A Midwest native, Paige completed her Bachelor of Science in Recreation and her Master of Education in Leisure and Tourism Studies at Bowling Green State University and Ph.D. in the department of Park, Recreation, and Tourism Resources at Michigan State University. Paige’s research has focused on marketing, communication, and consumer behavior related to tourism, with a special interest in adventure travel and ecotourism as well as sustainable community based development. Paige’s more than 12 years of experience in travel industry management offers her valuable insight and understanding into the importance of translating research into practical application for the tourism industry. She has worked with organizations such as the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) and Conservation International conducting research of both the supply side (providers of tourism goods and services) and demand side (consumers/travelers) of the tourism industry.
Paige also works with rural communities interested in developing sustainable community-based tourism as an alternative means of diversifying the rural economy. Sustainable tourism, as outlined by the World Tourism Organization (WTO), should make optimal use of environmental resources that help conserve natural heritage and biodiversity, respect the socio-cultural authenticity of host communities and provide socio-economic benefits to all stakeholders. Sustainable tourism has the potential to link the conservation of nature with the well-being of local communities through a number of positive benefits including revenue generation, cultural preservation, and capacity building. Her recent work with the Roanoke River Mayors Association has resulted in a tourism vision for the region (vs. individual towns) which embraces the principles of sustainable community-based tourism. Using a strategic framework individual towns join efforts and resources to develop a shared vision for tourism in an effort to bring greater economic impact to North Carolina’s Roanoke River region.
Conservation International, Roanoke River Mayors Association, Adventure Travel Trade Association, and a variety of leadership and tourism organizations.