The City of Jackson still requires facial coverings as part of the "Mayor's Safe Recovery Jackson Order," now in effect.
About Visit Jackson
The Jackson Convention & Visitors Bureau, dba Visit Jackson, is the official destination marketing organization for the City of Jackson. It serves the Jackson community by positively impacting the city’s economy through recruitment and securing meetings and tourism activities. Visit Jackson is a quasi-independent governmental agency created by the Mississippi State Legislature.
In FY 2019, Visit Jackson’s support of events & meetings prompted $88.4 million in total tourism spend which generated over $151.7 million in economic impact.
Goal The overall goal of Visit Jackson is to cause major economic impact for Jackson through programs designed to identify, attract and service conventions and meetings, trade shows, group tours, sporting events, and consumer travelers while cultivating relationships with stakeholders, the value of citizenry contributions, and the collective quality of life of the destination.
Mission The mission of Visit Jackson is to connect, engage and inspire the Jackson community to be a welcoming destination for conventions, meetings, sporting events, and special events, resulting in rich, cultural, and memorable experiences with a rewarding sense-of-place for visitors and an economically beneficial and an enhanced quality-of-life for residents.
Diversity and Inclusion Visit Jackson is fiercely committed to reflecting and upholding the value of diversity of thought, culture, and lifestyles that is inherent in the Jackson community. We are dedicated to practicing radical inclusion and believe that a plurality of ideas and experiences shaped around civil dialogue and equitable outreach is the driving and consistent force that makes Jackson a great destination and a great city.
Legislation In 1983, the state legislature established the Jackson Convention & Visitors Bureau now doing business as Visit Jackson. Senate Bill #3080 authorized the creation of Visit Jackson, identified its purpose, and provided for funding through the levying of a 1% sales tax upon hotels/motels and restaurants. These funds form the foundation on which Visit Jackson promotes Jackson as a tourist, group tour, trade show, and convention/meeting destination. Visit Jackson was awarded accreditation from the Destination Marketing Accreditation Program (DMAP) - first in 2012 and renewed in 2021 - and was the first accredited DMO in the state of Mississippi. DMAP is an international accreditation program developed by Washington, DC-based Destinations International which is the world’s largest resource for official destination organizations, convention and visitors bureaus (CVBs) and tourism boards.
Structure Visit Jackson’s three departments - administration, marketing and sales and services - work collectively to provide services to visitors, conventions, group tour operators, local hotels, restaurants, shops, special events and attractions, and assist to bring millions of dollars into the local economy annually.
The Visit Jackson Board of Directors meets monthly on the fourth Tuesday at 8:30 a.m. in our Executive Board Room at 308 East Pearl Street in downtown Jackson.
Advisory Committees The committees comprise a myriad of talents possessed by tourism professionals and stakeholders. The sharing of their knowledge base and collaborations have the propensity to contribute significantly to the enhancement of the strategic direction of Visit Jackson and its mission. Click HERE to download the list of staff and board liaisons.
Visit Jackson utilizes its services and staff to incorporate several signature programs to aid in strengthening the Jackson product, to recognize its accomplishments and provide resources to accomplish its goals.
VISIT JACKSON SIGNATURE PROGRAMS:
Mississippi Miss Hospitality The mission of the Mississippi Miss Hospitality Pageant shall be to identify, honor, and utilize young ladies between the ages of 18 and 24 to promote Mississippi’s tourism, industry, and economic development by serving as Mississippi's Goodwill Ambassador. Beginning this year, the pageant system in incorporating a Little Miss category. The Littles will be mentored by the Senior Queens and assist them as they promote and represent their communities.
Little Miss and Miss Jackson Hospitality will proudly represent the citizens of Jackson during the state-wide pageant this year. These unique ambassadors serve as the faces and voices for the Jackson Tourism Community, welcoming groups, conventions, and city special events and activities. To request an appearance by Little Miss and Miss Jackson Hospitality, you may send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Visit Jackson office at (601) 960-1891.
Meet Jackson's Hospitality Ambassadors:
Miss Jackson Hospitality: MaKayla Dillard
Jackson-native MaKayla Dillard is the 2021 Miss Jackson Hospitality, joining other 18-24-year-old young women from across the state to serve as their community’s “goodwill ambassador for tourism.” The daughter of Tom Dillard III and Amy Hedgepeth Dillard, MaKayla is majoring in political science & broadcast communications at Hinds Community College.
Little Miss Jackson Hospitality: Kaylen McKenzie Wade
Brandon-native Brecken Barrett, 7, is Jackson’s Little Miss Hospitality, chosen to serve alongside Dillard. Barrett is a first-grader at Rouse Elementary where she is an honor roll student. Her favorite subject is STEM and, when she grows up, she wants to be a pediatrician. Barrett enjoys dancing, gymnastics, and art. She is the daughter of Chris and Tori Rice and Ben and Amber Barrett.
Hometown Hero Awards Visit Jackson celebrates the best of the best in the Tourism Industry each year in the month of February. The awards program was created by Visit Jackson to recognize and show appreciation for the hard work of the industry’s top professionals who have helped contribute to the success of the tourism industry in Jackson. Watch the 2021 presentation.
- Tourism Visionary Award – the highest industry achievement award recognizes industry partners who navigate new standards of involvement and cooperation to develop Jackson’s tourism future.
- Hometown Heroes – Travel and Tourism Industry Employees in an industry-related business, which greatly contributed to the travel and tourism industry by serving above and beyond their usual job duties.
- SUMITT (Superlative Merit in Travel and Tourism) Award – recognize Jackson’s top tourism entities for their outstanding contributions to the advancement of travel and tourism in Jackson.