Cumberland Gap Region Tourism Association recognizes Campbell Countians and WLAF
By Charlotte Underwood
CUMBERLAND GAP, TN (WLAF) – Campbell County had three recipients recognized by the Cumberland Gap Region Tourism Association (CGRTA). The fifth annual “Region Strong” awards ceremony and dinner was held Tuesday evening at The Old Church Events Center in Cumberland Gap.
Cindi Anne Rogers was posthumously awarded the Lifetime Achievement Region Strong Award. The award has been named after her and will be a new yearly award by the CGRTA. Her mother Shirley Fox Rogers and her daughters Micah and Kyla accepted the award.
Cindi Anne Rogers played a role in the start up of the CGRTA, which was founded in May of 2016. According to CGRTA founder and director Carl Nichols, Cindi advised him as he was starting the organization. She also served as the first CGRTA board president.
“Cindi’s philosophy was that a professional does not walk away from a struggling counterpart; when I was creating this organization, Cindi was a close advisor. She understood the need of collaboration for tourism directors across the region. Cindi wanted only the best for her county and her community,” Nichols said
According to Nichols, “Cindi was dedicated to her community, her county, her church, family and friends.”
“On October 31, 2020, Campbell County lost a true community leader and tourism lost a champion, all this pales to what her family lost,” Nichols said.
Shirley Fox Rogers said her daughter always “gave it her all.”
“We are so very proud of her, and we miss her so much. She gave her best to every single thing she did,” Shirley Fox Rogers said.
Campbell County’s WLAF Cable Channel 12-TV was also recognized for its community contributions throughout the county with a Region Strong Award.
“WLAF provides daily coverage of county-wide events and news, building a stronger community and bettering the county,” said CGRTA Director Carl Nichols.
WLAF celebrates 70 years on air Wednesday, May 17.
Campbell County’s Brad Smiddy received the Presidential Award at Tuesday’s award ceremony. Smiddy is the president of the Campbell Culture Coalition, he is active in Postmark LaFollette, as well as a CGRTA board member and past president.
Each year, an individual or organization in each of the ten counties served by the Cumberland Gap Region Tourism Association is awarded the Region Strong recognition for “exceptional contributions in their community.”
“We have so many wonderful and talented people in this region,” Nichols said.
The Region Strong awards were created to recognize the advancements and dedication of groups and organizations “that have made their community a better place to live, work and play.”
According to the Cumberland Gap Region Tourism Association board members, the Region Strong awards go to “community leaders, businesses, groups or organizations for building a stronger economy by promoting community and tourism development within their county.”
“We want to encourage everyone to become involved in making their community a better place,” Nichols said.
The Cumberland Gap Region Tourism Association is chartered as a non-profit 501c6 “membership” corporation. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 05/17/2023-6AM)