U.S. Space & Rocket Center

Staff Directory

Call: 256-551-2230 or 800-843-0468

The Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau team is here to make your next visit to Huntsville a memorable one.  We can help plan your convention, meeting, reunions or tour. 

The Huntsville/Madison County CVB is divided into four major divisions: 
AdministrativeConvention SalesTourism SalesMarketing.



President & CEO

(256) 551-2230


Judy Ryals, President/CEO of the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, joined the Bureau in 1978 and is the longest serving director of a tourism agency in the State of 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. The Huntsville/Madison County CVB was chosen as organization of the year by the Alabama tourism industry as well as by Alabama Mountain Lakes Association, the north Alabama regional tourism marketing organization. She is a graduate of the University of Alabama where she received a degree in public relations in 1976. Mrs. Ryals, an Alabama native, is married to Davis W. Ryals, Jr. The couple has two sons, Bo and Matt.


Executive Assistant

(256) 551-2283


Catie Wells joined the CVB team in September 2010. Her job description is quite multi-faceted and encompasses human resources, proofreading and editing, accounting, working with the Board of Directors, event planning and scheduling. Catie’s previous work experience includes teaching Spanish and English and working in the hospitality industry as the Reservations Supervisor at Miraval Resort in Tucson, Arizona. She is on the board of directors for Huntsville Community Ballet. Catie enjoys spending time with her horse, and they have recently started the first equestrian vaulting club in Alabama.


Administrative Assistant

(256) 551-2263


Lori Dendy’s family moved to Huntsville in the early 60s to become part of the space program. Lori arrived a bit later and is proud to be the native in the family. Her first job helping newcomers transition to the city, led her to appreciate the natural beauty and opportunities of her hometown with new perspective. Now she’s happy to be sharing that information with visitors looking to make the most of their time in the Rocket City. In addition to life with her engineer husband and two adult children, Lori enjoys reading Southern literature, volunteering and experiencing Huntsville’s local music scene.



Vice President of Conventions

(256) 551-2223


Bob Rogers is a 40 year veteran of the hospitality industry, beginning his career as a teenager at a Miami, Florida resort hotel. After graduating from Florida International University in Miami, he began his career at a large convention hotel in Atlanta, Georgia. He worked in every department in the hotel to gain knowledge of the entire operation of a hotel. From there he worked at Omni/Dunfee hotels and Hilton Hotels in a number of different cities in the U.S. as General Manager. His work in Huntsville led him to become Director of the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology’s Jackson Conference Center before becoming the Vice President of Conventions at the Huntsville Madison/County Convention & Visitors Bureau. Rogers has held many board positions on the state and local levels as well as winning a number of hospitality awards statewide and in Huntsville / Madison County.


Senior Convention Sales Manager & Technology Network Manager - Markets: Religious, Corporate

(256) 551-2233


Sharon Snell joined the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau in 1999. As Senior Convention Sales Manager, she is responsible for marketing Huntsville, Madison and Madison County as a meeting destination to the religious, corporate and multicultural markets. Additionally, Sharon oversees technology operations at the Bureau as well as updating website content. Prior to joining the Bureau, she worked for Intergraph Corporation, a computer mapping and graphics company headquartered in Huntsville. Sharon is a graduate of Tennessee State University where she received a degree in Management Information Systems.


Convention Sales Manager - Markets: Government, Military Reunions, Class Reunions

(256) 551-2334


As a Navy brat and an Army wife, Jo Seay has been training her whole life for her position as Convention Sales Manager at the Huntsville/Madison County Convention and Visitors Bureau, where she handles the government market. Prior to joining the Bureau she was a sales manager at the Hilton Huntsville for 5 years and a travel agent for 10 years for a government travel agency. Jo has an Executive position on the Board of Directors for the Association of United States Army (AUSA). She worked to establish the Rocket City Chapter of Society of Government Meeting Professionals (SGMP) and held a board position for many years. She served as president and board member of Hospitality Sales and Marketing Executives (HSME) and is a proud graduate of Leadership Huntsville/Madison County Class 28, as well as being active in several other organizations.


Convention Sales Manager - Markets: Sports and Education

(256) 551-2270


Don Dukemineer joined the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau in 2006. As Convention Sales Manager, he works with sports and education markets to attract meetings, conventions, tournaments, events and sporting activities into our community. Don serves as chairman and director for Sports Alabama, Alabama’s state sports initiative. He has earned his designation as a Certified Hospitality Sales Professional (CHSP) and Certified Sports Event Executive (CSEE). Don serves on various community boards including the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Executives (HSME), Friends Inc. (non-profit), HHS Future Business Leaders of America, Huntsville Special Events committee and is a graduate of the Leadership Huntsville/Madison County Connect program. He is also a member of the mentoring committee for the National Association of Sports Commissions (NASC). Don is a 2005 graduate of the University of Alabama.


Convention Sales Manager - Markets: Associations, Fraternal, Family Reunions, Multi-Cultural



Prior to joining the Convention team in December 2012, Leslie Walker enjoyed a 20+ year career in all facets of sales and hospitality. Working her way up through the ranks beginning as a front desk associate, planning meetings and conventions as a Sales Manager and Director of Sales as well as serving as a General Manager all within the hotel and lodging industry. Additionally, Leslie served as Logistics Planner for a Huntsville-based software company, organizing national and international exhibitions. In her position at the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, she works with Fraternal, Association, Cyber Security, Family Reunion, Multi-cultural and Social Media Markets as well as being a regular contributor to the iHeartHsv.com blog. Leslie served on the founding board of the Society of Government Meeting Professionals – Rocket City Chapter, has served as Vice President and President of the Huntsville Hospitality Sales and Marketing Executives and is currently the Board Vice President of Campaigns for United Cerebral Palsy of Huntsville & the Tennessee Valley.


Convention Services Manager - Welcome Packets: Brochures, Maps etc.



Van Brown is a Huntsville native who grew up within walking distance of the bustling downtown business district. He loves the history and folklore of the area, much of which was passed on by his grandmother. Van is active in the community and has served on the Huntsville Pilgrimage Association board. He participates in the Maple Hill Cemetery Stoll each year dressed as local bovine legend Lily Flagg. When he’s not at the CVB assisting folks with brochures, maps and other local information, you may find him leading a ghost walk for a local tour company.



Executive Vice President - Marketing, Media & Advertising inquiries

(256) 551-2235


Charles Winters is the Executive Vice President of the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, responsible for overseeing the marketing and public relations of the organization. A graduate of Huntsville High, and the University of North Alabama, Charles began his career at the CVB in 1986. He actively serves on several boards including Leadership Huntsville/Madison County, the Huntsville Sports Commission and the University of North Alabama Alumni Association. He has just been appointed to a three year term on the Advisory Committee of the North American Travel Journalists Association. Charles is a past president of the Huntsville-Madison County Hospitality Association, Hospitality Sales & Marketing Executives and received the 2008 Alabama Tourism Employee of the Year Award.


Marketing Manager

(256) 551-2294


Kristen Pepper is an Athens, Ala. native who grew up “on the outside looking in” at all of the hustle and bustle of the Rocket City. As Marketing Manager, Kristen supports the marketing, advertising, and public relations efforts of the Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau. After graduating with a bachelor’s in marketing from Auburn University in 2013, she returned to North Alabama and coincidentally interned at the CVB in 2014. From there, she started her career in the nonprofit sector before returning to the CVB full time in 2016. She is a member of the North Alabama chapter of the Public Relations Council of Alabama, serving as a board member as well as planning committee member for events such as Nonprofit University and the BIG Marketing Event.


Social Media Specialist


Heather Smith is a Huntsville native who left Alabama just long enough to want to come back home. A former newspaper journalist, she is a storyteller at heart, using the written word to tell people about all the things they don't know but should. As a writer, editor and general communications specialist, Heather has enjoyed a fun-filled career of unique writing experiences for cool places like NASA, the U.S. Army and the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology. When not tweeting, facebooking, or instagramming, she can be found hanging out with her two sons or sipping on a mocha at a local coffee shop.



Vice President of Tourism

(256) 551-2368


Jennifer Moore is the Vice President of Tourism for the Convention & Visitors Bureau. She has been with the Bureau for approximately 10 years. Her responsibilities include overseeing all aspects of the tourism department including promoting Huntsville and Madison County to leisure, group and international visitors, as well as overseeing the administration and operation of the Bureau’s two Visitor Centers. Jennifer works closely with tourism industry partners locally, regionally and nationally to promote and share information about the community. Jennifer was recently selected to serve on the U.S. Travel Association’s Destination Council Board of Directors representing over 500 Destination Marketing Organizations throughout the country. In addition, she has served as a board member for many local and regional industry organizations. She has been honored to receive several awards including; the 2015 Award of Excellence from the Alabama Travel Council, the 2009 Tourism Employee of the Year from the Alabama Tourism Department and the 2008 Tourism Professional of the Year from the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association. Jennifer graduated with a degree in Economics from Auburn University.


Tourism Sales Manager/Educational Escapes Program Coordinator

(256) 551-2204 or 866-ESC-2-HSV (372-2478)


Pamela Brooks Williams is a Huntsville native who is passionate about her city and sharing its highlights with anyone she can. She has been with the Huntsville/Madison County CVB for 11 years. As tourism sales manager, she works to bring groups of all types and leisure travelers to our community and especially enjoys working with student groups taking advantage of the unique offerings available exclusively through our Educational Escapes program which she coordinates. Pam is responsible for implementing new product and events in Huntsville such as Huntsville Restaurant Week , the Lucky Duck Scavenger Hunt, and Trains on Main Scavenger Hunt. She serves as the liaison to the City of Madison. Prior to joining the Bureau, Pam worked at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center serving in various roles and was active in the local hospitality industry. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Alabama Huntsville with a degree in history and political science. Pam enjoys travel and is frequently on the go. She has three talented, intelligent and very busy teenagers along with a canine baby.


Visitor Center Manager

(256) 551-2293


Prior to joining the Bureau, Lynne Williams was executive director of the Weeden House Museum. Her work during the three years she was at the museum focused on finding ways to engage with the community and getting visitors through the doors of the Weeden House. Lynne is a graduate of Florida State University and her career experience also includes work in the banking industry, marketing a retail shopping center and several years as a small business owner. Lynne manages part-time paid and volunteer staff members who warmly welcome visitors to Huntsville and all of Madison County, seven days a week throughout the year.