In response to Gov. Bill Lee’s first executive order to better serve rural Tennessee, TDTD has hired Jenni Veal as the new Rural Destination Development Manager. In this position, she will focus on destination development in Tennessee’s distressed and at-risk counties providing one-on-one assistance with product development, assessments, strategic planning and grant opportunities.
Jenni, a marketing and development professional, comes to TDTD after eight years working in regional tourism in Southeast Tennessee before starting her own tourism marketing and development consulting firm, Rural BaseCamp, in Chattanooga. She is passionate about partnering with rural communities to successfully plan and implement tourism, outdoor recreation and heritage projects that benefit local economies and quality of life. In March 2022, she launched Travel Embers, a heritage tourism podcast that promotes off-the-beaten-path locations and authentic experiences to the growing cultural heritage travel market. Jenni is an alumna of UT Knoxville’s communications department and has freelanced for various publications, specializing in outdoor family travel and conservation topics. She and her family live in Sequatchie County.
Additionally, TDTD has announced two new Welcome Center managers: Paula Clifton at I-65 Giles County (Ardmore) Welcome Center and Carl Tittle at I-81 Sullivan County (Bristol) Welcome Center.
Paula Clifton has been an assistant for the Ardmore Welcome Center for six years. Previously, she operated a daycare center in her home, and she and her husband owned their own construction business. Interacting with people has always been her strong point. She looks forward to her next journey as Welcome Center Manager. She is a proud employee of the State of Tennessee and her greatest support is her husband.
Carl Tittle began his management career by periodically being a leadman at Sandvik Rock Tools from 1989-2003. He was also a Café Manager at Books-A-Million from 2009-2017. Carl has always been professional and courteous to customers while earning several accolades through customer surveys. Carl holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from King University and received Dean's List recognition. He is married and has four children and three grandchildren. His favorite pastimes include travel and being a musician and singer in a band, entertaining at several different venues throughout Tennessee and Virginia for over 24 years. Previously, Carl worked at Ensemble Health Partners at Bristol Regional Medical Center, where he served in Admissions and Customer Service.