ORLANDO-Bill Peeper, a survivor in metro Orlando’s hotly competitive hospitality industry, wwas recognized Dec. 15 for his community leadership over the past 17 years.

The 200-member Central Florida Hotel & Lodging Association presented its Charles Andrew Hospitality Award to Peeper, president of the Orlando Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau, at the group’s annual awards banquet at Walt Disney World’s Coronado Resort.

The award is named for Charles Andrew, the association’s founder. Peeper helped organize the convention and visitors bureau in 1984 and grew the staff from two persons to 150 employees.

He has chaired the Florida Tourism Development Council Consortium and the board of directors of the International Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus.

Industry peers credit him with spearheading promotional efforts after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, DC. The Cleveland, OH-born Peeper has been a travel industry professional for 30 years.

Meeting News magazine has named him one of the 25 most influential people in the meetings industry for five consecutive years.

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