Twin Cities Gateway Announces Leadership Changes

Twin Cities Gateway, a regional convention & visitors bureau in the Minneapolis-Saint Paul area, has announced leadership changes for the organization. Al Stauffacher will assume the Director’s position on January 1, 2021. Natalie Conrad has been named the Director of Marketing and Communications, effective immediately.

Stauffacher has been serving as the organization’s Director of Sports Marketing and Events since October of 2016. He will replace Steve Markuson who is retiring on December 31, after nearly 40 years in the Minnesota travel and tourism industry. Prior to joining Twin Cities Gateway, Stauffacher served as the President of the Board for six years and was a regional logistics manager at Hewlett Packard Enterprise for 30 years. He is a Certified Sports Event Executive (CSEE) with the Sports and Events Tourism Association and recently completed the University of Minnesota Growing Tourism Leadership Certificate program. He also serves on many sports’ commission boards, including the Governor of USA Broomball and is an active member in the Minnesota Sports group.

Conrad was previously the Public Relations and Communications Manager for Minneapolis Northwest, a regional convention & visitors’ bureau, overseeing all public relations, communications and social media for three years. Prior to joining the tourism industry, she was a Public Relations Account Executive at a PR agency, and held various roles in marketing, communications and journalism, bringing more than nine years of expertise. In 2020, she was recognized as one of the Ad Federation of Minnesota’s 32 Under 32 Award winners and was part of the award-winning team that won an Excellence in Marketing Award from Explore Minnesota Tourism for Branding & Integrated Marketing Campaign.

Pete Turok, the organization’s President said, “We’re pleased to have Al Stauffacher taking the reins and Natalie Conrad joining the Twin Cities Gateway team. The COVID-19 circumstances have presented challenges for the tourism and hospitality industry, but we’re confident their comprehensive experience and expertise will lead us to continued success for both the short and long term.”

The mission of Twin Cities Gateway is to market and promote the destination area to generate increased visitation and tourism-related economic impacts for its member cities of Anoka, Blaine, Coon Rapids, Fridley, Ham Lake, Lino Lakes, Mounds View, New Brighton, and Shoreview in the north metro area of Minneapolis-Saint Paul. The nonprofit organization is funded by the local option lodging tax collected by 23 lodging properties throughout the member cities.