Salute to Tourism Awards

6th Annual
Somerset County Salute to Tourism Awards
January 24, 2020

12:00pm-12:30pm – Networking & Open Bar
12:30pm-1:00pm – Awards Presentation
1:00pm-2:00pm – Featured Speaker & Luncheon

The Awards Program

This annual event is designed to recognize individuals, places, organizations and events that have made Somerset County, NJ the vibrant place it is to visit, live, work and attract talent.


Congratulations to last year’s 2019 Salute to Tourism Winners

  • Service Excellence – Gina DiFrancesco, Rooms Controller, Bridgewater Marriott. For going above and beyond to help successfully relocate a new Rutgers University football coach and his family from Ohio to Bridgewater.
  • Economic Champion – The Center for Contemporary Art. For its impact on Somerset County in the areas of employment, financial contributions, and community events and programs.
  • Tourism Champion – Tour of Somerville. For championing Somerset County’s cycling heritage, drawing over 25,000 spectators and 1,000 cyclists to thriving Downtown Somerville in its 75th year, and expanding event offerings to appeal to the entire community.
  • Outstanding Event – Somerset County’s Weekend Journey Through the Past. (An initiative of the Somerset County Freeholders and Somerset County Cultural & Heritage Commission) For bringing the educational, economic and preservation benefits of heritage tourism to residents and visitors for over 10 years.

Registration for 2020 coming soon!

Somerset County Tourism would like to express our deepest appreciation and thanks to our Charter Sponsor, Duke Farms, for their continued generosity and endorsement of the Salute to Tourism Awards Program.


We would also like to thank House of Blooms for sponsoring the centerpieces for 2019.

For more information about sponsorship opportunities, please email

Nominations for 2020 will open in early Fall 2019.

Award Categories

Economic Champion: Distinguishes a person or organization that has made a significant and direct impact on the Somerset County economy, whether through greater visitor spend, job creation, or increased tax revenues. Indirect impacts will also be considered.

Service Excellence: Presented to a Somerset County tourism professional who has demonstrated outstanding service. This person has gone above and beyond the call of duty to make a customer’s experience at one of County’s tourism assets more enjoyable and represents the ideal of friendly and helpful service.

Tourism Champion: Recognizes an individual or organization that has promoted Somerset County’s attributes and resources to help establish the destination brand and draw more visitors. The winner enhances community pride and promotes an understanding of the long term sustainability of our tourism industry.

Outstanding Event: Presented to an event that exemplifies tourism industry best practices, supports the spirit of the Visit Somerset County brand, and demonstrates overall success in a positive economic and community-focused environment.

Past recipients include:

The Bernards Inn                                                       
Bridgewater Commons 
Bridgewater Marriott              
The Center For Contemporary Art                                                                   
Downtown Somerville Alliance                          
The Dessert Plate                                                        
Duke Farms                                                                    
The Far Hills Race Meeting Association          
Greater Media New Jersey     
Hampton Inn & Suites Bridgewater                               
Hyatt House Bridgewater
Natirar Resort Development LLC
The Olde Mill Inn & Grain House Restaurant
Raritan Valley Community College
The Somerset County Park Commission
Somerset County’s Weekend Journey Through the Past
The Somerset Patriots
Studio 7 Fine Art Gallery
Tour of Somerville
The United States Equestrian Team Foundation
USA Today Network/Gannett Company
The USGA Golf Museum
Verve Restaurant