Patricia Ann Talley (Courtesy Photo)
Patricia Ann Talley (Courtesy Photo)

Patricia Ann Talley, the Peace Representative in Mexico for the World Peace Prayer Society/ Peace Pals International, will be the keynote speaker at the “Sun & Fun” event for travel professionals, hosted by the Hotel Association of Ixtapa Zihuatanejo, Guerrero, Mexico on January 10-13, 2017. Professor Talley, originally from Michigan, USA, has been a language and business instructor in the area for 20 years, and she is the founder of the Ixtapa Zihuatanejo Peace Program.

Travel agents, travel writers, and travel industry professionals are invited to the “Sun & Fun” event. This year’s theme is “Sustainable Tourism.” The purpose of the event is to help travel professionals become familiar with the destination. Hotel accommodations, meals, and event activities are provided free to all participants. Event participants are only responsible for the cost of their air transportation.

The United Nations has set Sustainable Development Goals for the world to accomplish over the next fifteen years that are critically important for people, our planet, economic prosperity, and peace.  Tourists visit beaches, attend cultural festivals, visit historic sites, and buy local souvenirs and products. Thus, sustainable tourism provides social and economic benefits for the local community; it enhances cultural exchange, and is good for the environment. Sustainable tourism is vital to our world!

Back in 2010, Professor Talley along with representatives from the Ixtapa Zihuatanejo tourism industry, local universities, and not-for-profit organizations formed an alliance to develop and support various programs for peace education, conservation, diversity, and other community issues. The community built a peace pole to remind everyone of this commitment.

In 2015, these unified efforts resulted in Ixtapa Zihuatanejo being certified as an “International City of Peace”. In 2016, Ixtapa became one of only two EarthCheck certified destinations in the Americas, strengthening the region’s position as a leader in sustainable tourism. The state is implementing new health programs, and there are many other projects for the social and economic development of the community.

Patricia Ann Talley, MBA, is a Whitney Young, Jr. Fellow of Economic Development from the Ross Graduate School of Business at the University of Michigan. She also holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance from California State University in Long Beach, California. Professor Talley has also conducted extensive research on the African presence in Mexico, and is the publisher of English on-line magazine for the area. In 2011, Talley was honored as Ixtapa Zihuatanejo’s “Immigrant of the Year”. She is the daughter of Alfred and Barbara Talley of Southfield, Michigan.