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Paddock, Marianita | University of Houston Libraries

Name: Paddock, Marianita

Historical Note:

Marianita Paddock worked with the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Council and assembled many of the documents in this collection. Other materials in this collection including ephemera were collected by her parents, Mildred and Harold Paddock.

From 1930 to 1962, the Houston Chamber of Commerce maintained a Convention department and during the 1950’s the organization developed a tourism program for the city of Houston. In 1962 the department aided in bringing 308 conventions and nearly two hundred thousand delegates to the city, which pumped over $19 million into the Houston-area economy.

With the opening of the Astrodome and future plans for a Livestock Show facility, Houston had the ability to entertain major conventions and trade shows.

As the volume of tourism increased in Houston, mainly around coastal attractions, as well as the Astrodome and the Manned Spacecraft Center, the Chamber of Commerce began a concerted effort to improve the city’s approach to conventions and tourism. In cooperation with hotels, restaurants, and other businesses, the Chamber created the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Council (GHCVC). Though the GHCVC formed in 1962, the organization did not officially begin to operate until the following year. At the outset, the Chamber supplied the Council with staff and requested for the International Association of Convention Bureaus to transfer its membership to the newly created group. The transfer took place on June 1, 1963 yet the Chamber of Commerce provided literature and continued its Convention and Tourism Committees through the end of the year.

Later, under CEO Don Vaughn, in an effort to keep with other tourist organizations around the country, a proposal was introduced to change the name of the GHCVC. The original plan dropped the “greater” and “council” leaving the name of the organization as Houston Convention and Visitor Bureau. Yet after great debate the compromise merely changed “Council” to “Bureau” leaving the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau we know today.

Sources: Houston History: http://02db39d.netsolhost.com/decades/history5od.htm
Note Author: Timothy Wyatt

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