Our Mission Statement
The purpose of the Board shall be to market, advertise and promote Florence and Lauderdale County, Alabama as a tourist destination, as well as, a meeting and convention center.
This primary objective shall be accomplished by soliciting conferences, individual, corporate and group visitors, and through the promotion of our special attractions and overall resources of the region.
The Board shall further attempt to expand tourism through the support of educational, cultural, recreational, civic and social activities that enhance the perception of this area by showcasing its hospitality and natural beauty.
The overall intent of this mission is to strengthen the economic foundation for all citizens of Lauderdale County.
President & CEO
Rob Carnegie joined the Florence-Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau as President and CEO on September 28, 2015. Before joining the Florence Tourism staff, he was the Director of Tourism Kingston, the Destination Marketing Organization for his hometown of Kingston, Ontario, for 10 years. At Tourism Kingston, which was a division of the Kingston Economic Development Corporation, he developed key partnerships with municipal and provincial government agencies along with key local industry stakeholders. Carnegie oversaw the coordination and execution in multiple tourism industry segments including Leisure/Consumer, Meetings & Conferences, Travel Trade, Sport Tourism, Travel Media, Tourism Attraction and Visitor Services. Further to the marketing portfolio, he managed the Tourism Attraction & Investment file with a focus on developing Kingston’s product offering to visitors.
Prior to his role with the City of Kingston, Carnegie was the Director of Sport Tourism in the Nashville, TN area and developed Team Williamson, the Sport Tourism Council of the Williamson County Convention & Visitors Bureau in Franklin. He spent a total of 16 years in South Florida and Nashville, TN focusing his career in sales/marketing & communications. Carnegie is a graduate of Trinity University in Miami, FL with a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Resource Management.
Alison Stanfield, Director of Operations
A native of Florence, Alison graduated from Coffee High School and the University of North Alabama. She began working at Florence/Lauderdale Tourism in June of 1995 and is currently the Director of Operations. Alison handles a large part of the tourism operations including accounting, advertising, development of marketing materials and supervisor of the internship program. She coordinates the walking tours of historic Florence and works with organizers of various events. She was recently named Tourism Professional of the Year by the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association and received the Renaissance in Business award by No’Ala.
Suzie Shoemaker, Manager, Sport & Event Sales
A native of Tuscumbia, Alabama, Suzie is a graduate of Deshler High School and the University of North Alabama where she received a degree in Speech Communications and Theatre. Suzie is the Manager of Sport/Event Sales at Florence/Lauderdale CVB. Outside the tourism office, Suzie serves on the Florence First Fridays, Shoals Earth Day Fest, Keep the Shoals Beautiful & Alabama Renaissance Faire committees. She enjoys performing in community theatre. Suzie’s daughter, Rebekah is a student at The University of North Alabama.
Randa Simpson, Manager, Media Relations
A native of Northport, Alabama, Randa is a graduate of Tuscaloosa Academy and the University of West Alabama where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Integrated Marketing Communications. While in college, she was a member of the UWA softball team and Phi Mu women’s fraternity. Randa has worked in numerous facets of media communications. She has served as the editor-in-chief and copy editor for the Muse newspaper, co-coordinator of the first annual Integrated Marketing Communications Competitive Conference, co-anchor for UWA¹s news broadcasting station, graphic and website designer for The Livingston Press, and named Integrated Marketing Communications Scholar of the Year in 2016. Randa has traveled to both Las Vegas and Minneapolis to present her research on female body objectification in the media, landing her publication opportunities and entry into the Southeast Journalism Conference. Prior to working with the Florence/Lauderdale Tourism Bureau, Randa was the Customer Relations Specialist and Graphic Designer for a web design firm in Birmingham. Outside of the tourism office, Randa can be found snapping photos or playing fetch with her miniature dachshund fur baby, Luna Belle.
Rebecca Hopkins, Project Administrator
A native of Sheffield, Alabama, Rebecca is a graduate of Sheffield High School and Northwest-Shoals Community College where she received a degree in Office Administration. Rebecca was a student intern at Florence/Lauderdale Tourism in 2009 and began working in August of 2010. Her responsibilities and duties include convention and group services, website and calendar administration, weekly e-mail marketing and partnership program.
Visitor Experience Specialists
Suzanne@VisitflorenceAL.com A native of Sheffield, Al. Suzanne attended Sheffield High School and upon graduation attended University of North Alabama in Florence, Al. She worked in her family owned business for 27 years until it closed in 2005. After several years in insurance sales, Suzanne came to work for the Florence/Lauderdale tourism in 2014 as a visitor experience specialist. Her duties include welcoming visitors, providing information on local events and other points of interests. She resides in Muscle Shoals with her husband Wayne. They have three grown children and two grandchildren.
Linda@Visitflorenceal.com Linda is a native of Memphis, TN and moved to the area in 1991. After attending Northwest Shoals Community College, Linda was employed at Sara Lee and retired in 2012. Linda has returned to Northwest Shoals Community College and is taking a refresher course in microcomputers. She is one of our Visitor Experience Specialists and her duties include sharing information about all the things to do in the Shoals area.