Eckman recertified by the National Tour Association

Since Eckman took over as director of the Ottumwa CVAB, money generated from tourism has increased. 2012 saw a 6.7 percent spike and over $80 million total.

In 2007, Mark Eckman took over as director of the Ottumwa Convention and Visitors Bureau, and during that year he also was certified by the National Tour Association.

Eckman feels honored to be approved as a certified tour professional for another six years. He says the tour association looked at his higher education and tourism involvement when determining his credentials. Eckman is one of only six people in the state of Iowa to receive this certification.

â??It's something Iâ??m very proud of,â?? he said. â??My involvement with the National Tour Association is something i enjoy greatly and just having that opportunity have the seal of approval from NTA I think speaks volumes about the things that Iâ??ve done and the quality of those things.â??

Eckman got his start in the business as the director of the Villages of Van Buren County after graduating from the University of Iowa. He says his proudest accomplishment is bringing the 2015 Iowa Tourism Conference to Ottumwa and being able to jointly host that event with Fairfield.