COLUMBIA, S.C. (Tuesday, November 20, 2012)- Midlands Authority for Conventions, Sports & Tourism (MACST), the governing arm over Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center (CMCC), Columbia Metropolitan Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) and Columbia Regional Sports Council (CRSC), has received a number of recognitions this year as a preferred organization and destination for meeting, sport, event and convention planners.
Ric Luber, Kelly Barbrey and Jason Outman

Columbia CVB was recently honored with the 2012 Successful Meetings Pinnacle Award, an award that celebrates excellence in hospitality by identifying convention and visitor bureaus, hotels and conference centers that set the standard for others to follow. Voted on by readers of Successful Meetings Magazine, this industry-driven award reflects peer impressions about the work the organization has done and continues to do.

"The environment throughout the organization is one of drive and passion for selling the region and telling its story," said Ric Luber, President and CEO of MACST. "From the marketing and communications efforts, to the sales, convention center and event teams, we work seamlessly to draw individuals to this thriving region. Once here, we roll out the red carpet and ensure their time in the Columbia region was well spent and worth many return visits."

Columbia CVB was also recognized as a 2012 ConventionSouth Reader's Choice Award recipient. Highlighting the best in meeting sites across the south, this award was nominated and voted on by meeting and convention planners throughout the southeast. The CMCC/CVB has been named to this prestigious list for the fifth year in a row.

In addition to these notable honors, CRSC was recognized earlier this year with the National Association of Sports Commissions (NASC) 2012 Outstanding Web Presence award for their website and overall social media outreach.

"We are extremely proud of the work we as an organization have done this year to receive such honors," said Luber. "These awards will be great encouragement to our team as we continue to attract new business and individuals to The New Southern Hot Spot."

About the Midlands Authority for Conventions, Sports & Tourism:
The Midlands Authority for Conventions, Sports & Tourism is a private, not-for-profit corporation funded primarily by revenue generated by visitors through accommodations taxes and is the parent organization of Columbia Metropolitan Convention & Visitors Bureau, Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, and Columbia Regional Sports Council. The mission of the Midlands Authority is to strengthen the area's economy by marketing and selling of the entire Columbia region, its accommodations, restaurants, facilities and attractions as a destination for meetings, conventions, tradeshows, special events and leisure travel. For more information, please visit