Huntsville/Madison CVB’s Judy Ryals honored with Lifetime Achievement Award

Judy Ryals wins Lifetime Achievement Award
Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau CEO Judy Ryals was given a Lifetime Achievement Award Monday. (Hville Blast)

If you are talking about Huntsville, it’s hard not to mention Judy Ryals. The CEO of the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau is truly all things Huntsville.

And Monday her hard work in promoting the Rocket City was recognized at the Governor’s Conference on Tourism in Fairhope with a Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by Gov. Kay Ivey.

Judy Ryals Lifetime Achievement Award

Judy Ryals gets award from Kay Ivey
Judy Ryals gets a Lifetime Achievement Award from Gov. Kay Ivey. (Hville Blast)

The Alabama Governor’s Conference on Tourism gives out the Lifetime Achievement Award annually (last year’s winner was Mobile Film Office director Eva Golson) and this year’s winner — fittingly — was Ryals.

Judy Ryals joined the Bureau in 1978 and is the longest serving director of a tourism agency in Alabama. She has been appointed by six governors to serve on the Advisory Board of the Alabama Tourism Department and currently serves as Chairman.

She was one of the first females to serve as a board member of the International Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus, which is now Destination Marketing Association International.

She has served on the Board of Directors of many statewide boards including the Alabama Council of Association Executives, Alabama Association of Convention & Visitor Bureaus and Alabama Travel Council.

She received the state’s top award and was inducted into the Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame, the first CVB representative to receive this award. 

She is a graduate of the University of Alabama where she received a degree in public relations in 1976.

An award for Judy Ryals is an award for Huntsville

Huntsville is one of the fastest-growing cities in the U.S. (Nathan Watson/Hville Blast)

Ryals’ award Monday comes after a bevy of accolades showered upon the Rocket City in the last couple of years.

Recently, the Rocket City ranked among the best cities for new home buyers, an accolade that added to its ranking by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best places to live in the U.S.

Also in the last year or so, Huntsville has been recognized for its tech industry, for being family-friendly and for being one of the top cities in the nation for income growth.

Other accolades include:

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Michael Seale
Michael Seale
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