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Strong interest in Gladstone DestinationQ events conference

24 July 2018

Vern Kimball


World-renowned Canadian events leader Vern Kimball has been confirmed as the keynote speaker for next month’s DestinationQ forum in Gladstone, with nearly 200 tourism operators already registering to attend the free event.


Tourism and Events Queensland has confirmed Mr Kimball, the former CEO of the Calgary Stampede, will appear at the conference, joining a strong line-up of speakers who will address delegates and share valuable insights.

TEQ chief executive Leanne Coddington said she was delighted to not only bring the forum to Gladstone for the first time but to secure a speaker of Mr Kimball’s calibre.

“Our DestinationQ events conference will give operators from all across Queensland a valuable insight into what makes events successful and how to run events in a way that benefits the economy and the region,” she said.

“The theme of the day is ‘remaining relevant in the everchanging event landscape’ and Vern Kimball is the ideal speaker to share his experience on this topic having been CEO of the world-renowned and extremely popular Calgary Stampede.

“More than 1.2 million people attended the Calgary Stampede in 2017, a 10-day event celebrating the best of Canadian culture, and Vern will be able to share how he helped shape it into the extremely successful event it is today.”

Mr Kimball said he was excited to present at the forum and experience Queensland.

“I’m really excited to be invited to come and speak at the DestinationQ events conference in Gladstone, in what will be my first time in Australia,” he said.

“The three key areas that help make any event successful and sustainable are authenticity, the importance of the local community and long-term planning and I look forward to sharing more about that on the day.

“Of course Queensland is home to a huge variety of events too and I can’t wait to hit the ground and hear the success stories first-hand.”

The DestinationQ conference will be held on August 8 at the Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre.

For more information, visit the DestinationQ website