MPCC Monthly Luncheon: Helen T. Hill, CEO, Charleston Area Convention and Visitors Bureau
Helen Hill is the Chief Executive Officer of Explore Charleston (also known as the Charleston Area Convention & Visitors Bureau). The nonprofit organization represents 800 member businesses and ten municipal governments in the tri-county region with the mission to create overnight visitation and support responsible development through travel and tourism strategies. Growing up in Charleston provided Hill with unique insights she has put to use throughout her more than 30 years of promoting the region as a leisure and business destination.
Under Hill’s leadership, Explore Charleston has developed industry-leading programs that have assisted the Charleston area in becoming one of the most acclaimed destinations in the country. Accolades include a current ten-year run as Best City in the United States as voted by the readers of Conde Nast Traveler and eight consecutive years being named Top U.S. City by Travel + Leisure. The travel and hospitality industry grew to employ 40,000 local residents and generate a $9.7 billion annual economic impact for the Charleston region pre-pandemic.
In 2019, Hill was elected the Charleston County Aviation Authority’s first female Board Chair. Her efforts in air service development over the last decade were instrumental in expanding Charleston International Airport’s route map, including the recruitment of Southwest, Jet Blue, Alaska, Allegiant, Frontier, and British Airways.
Hill serves on numerous regional and national boards, including US Travel Association, Southeastern Wildlife Exposition, the Gaillard Management Corporation, and multiple statewide tourism organizations.
For her record as a civic and community leader, commitment to the tourism industry and contributions to South Carolina’s economic development, Hill was awarded the Order of the Palmetto, the state’s highest civilian honor.
Hill is a faithful alumna of Ashley Hall School and Clemson University. She is married to Charlestonian Burrow Hill, a retired contractor, and has three sons, Charlie, Martin and Turner.