- Tell us about what you do at your company
I am the president of VisitLEX.
- How do you define leadership?
Leadership, for me, is all about service: service to others, the community, to God. There is a particular verse of Scripture that has been my primary inspiration as a leader: do justice, love kindness (mercy), walk humbly. (Micah 6:8)
- What was your biggest professional challenge and what did you learn?
There have been numerous opportunities to learn through challenges in my career. When VisitLEX first launched the iconic blue horse, there were naysayers and critics, including many in key leadership positions. But I could see the potential of the blue horse and what it could grow into for this community. I learned to trust my judgment. I also learned to exercise patience. Big ideas need time to take root.
- Is there an achievement or contribution that you are most proud of?
I feel incredibly blessed to have been a part of many meaningful endeavors, so it’s hard to pick just one. I was touched when Centre College honored me as Young Alumna of the Year. I’m equally proud to have received two Public Relations Society of America’s Silver Anvil awards, the highest in the industry. And I am truly thrilled with how the VisitLEX space came together in the recently restored Old Courthouse. The space is a warm welcome to all, and I love the commitment our staff has to incredible, gracious hospitality.
- What is one thing that people might be surprised to know about you?
I am the oldest of 20 grandchildren.
- What inspires you?
Acts of kindness, big and small. And being outdoors—especially on the water in a kayak.
Mary Quinn Ramer will speak at the Women Leading Kentucky Roundtable on August 29, 2019. As President of VisitLEX, Mary Quinn oversees all administrative, marketing and convention activities for the destination organization. Mary Quinn brings 20 years of tourism, marketing communications, and event planning experience to VisitLEX.
Prior to becoming President, Mary Quinn spent seven years as the Vice President of Marketing at the organization. During her tenure, she has overseen a successful rebranding effort and launch of the iconic blue horse brand, coordinated all Bureau activities for two international equine events, launched an original culinary tourism initiative, launched a national PR campaign for the destination, and has recently overseen the implementation of blue horse branded merchandise. Working with city officials and architects, Mary Quinn was an active participant in the restoration of the Old Fayette Courthouse, which now houses VisitLEX headquarters and their state-of-the-art visitor center.
In addition, Mary Quinn is active with numerous tourism-related organizations, including membership on the Kentucky Horse Park Commission and the boards of the Kentucky Travel Industry Association, Horse Country, Inc., Rural Land Management Board, Sister Cities, Equestrian Events International, LexArts, and McDowell House Museum. She is also a member of the Breeders’ Cup 2020 Host Committee.
Mary Quinn has been fortunate to be involved in many award-winning projects over the years. She is a proud recipient of the Public Relations Society of America’s top honor, the Silver Anvil, as well as the numerous marketing awards from the Kentucky Travel Industry Association, including Most Innovative Award in both 2017 and 2018. In 2015, Mary Quinn received the Lois Mateus Networking Award from the Kentucky Distillers Association and the Bourbon Women organization.
Mary Quinn is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Centre College, and in 2008, she received the Distinguished Young Alumna Award from the College.
Mary Quinn lives in downtown Lexington with her family and enjoys traveling–across the globe and to interesting spots in her beloved Commonwealth, trying out new restaurants, spending time with her precious nieces and nephews, and savoring every last bite of a gingerbread man from Burke’s Bakery in her hometown Danville.