Tourism Windsor Essex Wins Two Awards at the Ontario Tourism Summit

Tourism Windsor Essex CEO Gordon Orr Receives Accolades as the 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

Windsor, ON –Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island is proud to announce that we have won two Ontario Awards of Excellence at the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario’s (TIAO) Ontario Tourism Summit, presented tonight in Mississauga during the Awards of Excellence gala.

The Ontario Tourism Awards of Excellence are designed to celebrate success and recognize those who have made outstanding contributions to Ontario’s tourism industry. The awards received include:

  • Tourism Marketing & Travel Media Award of Excellence – Tourism Digital Marketing Award for the My Happy Place Campaign
  • Tourism Marketing & Travel Media Award of Excellence – Travel Media Story Award for the BlackTipH Fishing “Fishing As A Kid” Video Series

“Coming out of the pandemic, we were looking for a way to connect with our target audience in a fun and playful way, and the My Happy Place Campaign was born to help those rediscover what makes them happy. We’re proud of the campaign designed in collaboration with our advertising agency of record TANGO Creative Services” said Gordon Orr, CEO of Tourism Windsor Essex. “The campaign was geared around highly engaging photography and content, including itineraries and blogs. Clearly the campaign connected with our audience, and we are honoured to be awarded on a provincial level for our initiative.”

The My Happy Place Campaign was launched to engage both locals and out-of-market visitors through an immersive and cohesive brand running throughout the summer of 2022 to encourage exploration of Windsor Essex with the ‘My Happy Place’ digital pass and a check-in-and-win contest encouraging users to explore more throughout the summer and winning gift cards to spend at those local businesses along the way.

Almost 2,000 users registered for passes and checked-in at over 16.6k businesses, and over $30,000 in gift cards were given away for future spending by those users.

“Content is king in our marketing initiatives, and being awarded for our “Fishing As A Kid” video series with BlackTipH Fishing helps emphasize our intent to reach a world-wide and highly niche market in a new way, but more-so connect with that audience personally with two celebrated local personalities in a larger way” said Jason Toner, Director of Marketing & Communications with Tourism Windsor Essex. “Yearly Tourism Windsor Essex creates 30+ written content pieces, plus engages with 15+ local and international influencers to help sell our story, fully integrated into our campaigns to help inspire travel in an authentic way.”

The BlackTipH Fishing “Fishing As A Kid” Video Series features brothers Jake and Josh Jorgensen highlighting their return to Windsor & Lakeshore where they were born and raised. Part 1 “She Caught The Biggest Fish” and Part 2 “The Largest Predator In the Lake” of the series were filmed in the fall of 2022, while the filming of Part 3 and Part 4 are being filmed this November on the shores of Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River.

The series to date has received over 5.3 million views on YouTube and social media channels.\

“The opportunity to partner with Tourism Windsor Essex and showcase the waterways where we learned to cast our line growing up on the shores of Lake St. Clair to our followers was a win-win partnership” said Jake and Josh Jorgensen, partners and hosts of BlacktipH Fishing. “We thank the Tourism Windsor Essex team for supporting us and letting us profile Windsor Essex, which is honestly one of the best fishing spots in the world for freshwater fishing. We look forward to the future video segments and putting Windsor Essex on the map for fishing.”

In addition to the Awards of Excellence, Tourism Windsor Essex CEO Gordon Orr was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award during their Awards of Excellence Luncheon on Tuesday October 23rd. Orr’s career in tourism spans over 30 years beginning at the Best Western Rose City Inn at the age of 23 to the appointment of CEO of Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island in 2011, a position he still holds today.

Accolades for Orr include the founding president of the Windsor International Film Festival, member of the Canadian Destination Leadership Council through Destination International, board member of the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce, and President of the UWindsor Alumni Association to name a few. You can view the official announcement of Orr’s Lifetime Achievement Award by clicking here.

“I want to thank the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario for this tremendous honour and receiving this recognition by my peers and provincial colleagues makes it even that much more special” said Gordon Orr, CEO of Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island. “I am grateful to my tourism team, past and present, who also share in this award.”

You can click here to view Gordon Orr’s Lifetime Achievement Award celebration video.

You can click here for photos from this week’s award celebrations.


Cast your line and discover waters brimming with muskie, walleye bass and more! 🎣 🐟 Discover a full list of fish found in our region on our website! #YQG #WindsorEssex #DiscoverON #DiscoverYQG #DiscoverCanada #OntSouthwest


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Have you checked out the @carrouselmcc yet? Don’t miss out on a weekend of celebrating culture, tradition, and delicious food! Windsor Essex prides itself in its diverse community. Check out some of the highlights from featured villages at last weekend’s event.
#YQG #WindsorEssex #DiscoverON #carrouselofthenations

Featured Villages:
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