Earlier this week, Roger Dow announced that he would step down as CEO of U.S. Travel in July 2022, after completing his 18th year in that role. He spoke with Travel Weekly editor in chief Arnie Weissmann about why he was leaving, what he intends to do next and critical issues still facing the industry.
Q: Let’s start with the most basic questions: Why are you leaving, and why now?
A: Real simple. When I retired from Marriott to take this job in 2004, I said I’d take it for five years. So I’m basically on, like, four extensions. My plan had been to leave at the end of 2020 or 2021, but then Covid happened last March. (U.S. Travel chair) Christine Duffy said, “Hey, we’re in the midst of this thing. Will you extend?” So what we’re doing now is just making a formal date.
Q: What do you see as the accomplishment you most want to be remembered for?
A: Taking a whole industry association to another level, where it is meaningful and effective. Quite frankly, when I joined [what was…