Valley Forge Tourism & Convention Board
“An honest partner…”
With 74 hotels and casinos, 54 golf courses, 650 restaurants, hundreds of years of history, recreational activities ranging from ski slopes to indoor sky diving, and what Valley Forge Tourism & Convention Board CEO Mike Bowman calls “an aircraft carrier of a shopping mall,” the tourism industry in Montgomery County, Penna. is a multi-million dollar economic engine. Tourism generates over 30,000 jobs and the Board’s 500 members represent the spectrum of vibrant hospitality, cultural, gastronomic, sightseeing and recreational venues. Whether promoting Montgomery County as a specific destination for its 96 miles of trails, quaint community shopping experiences or Valley Forge National Historical Park, or to plan a wedding, convention or expo, or as a satellite center catching the overflow from such major events in adjacent Philadelphia as a political convention or a Pope’s visit, the Board’s 26 staff and interns fill 130,000 hotel room-nights each year.
“Tourism promotes community balance, jobs, economic impact, and the future,” says Bowman, sitting in his spacious offices behind the enormous King of Prussia Mall complex, the largest retail space in the U.S. “We’re very proud of the value proposition in Montgomery County. There’s free parking throughout almost the entire county, hotel room rates are reasonable, and there are options for whatever meets your wallet and expectations.”
Your Part-Time Controller was brought in to the organization a number of years ago when it made the transition from an arm of county government to an independent nonprofit. Today, Bowman says he’s hooked on YPTC’s services.
“We use an outside accountant to augment our own internal accounting resources,” he says. “I like the fact that YPTC is extremely reputable, with no bias. It’s not just that they take a fresh look at everything: they don’t conduct a witch hunt. Rather, they have a philosophy of a strategic, educated and logical culture that supports our processes and procedures. You wind up feeling excited about the audit – which no one is supposed to do! – and their work lets you sleep at night.
“YPTC’s people are balanced and mature,” he continues. “They’re always educating themselves to make sure they’re up to speed on new developments. In the world of finance, you want to have a fresh set of eyes looking at things. YPTC has the resources to bring in other personnel and they understand the law inside and out.”
Bowman appreciates the transparency in working with YPTC staff. “Nothing will be hidden. It’s nice when you have a partner who tells you not only that they’re looking at something but also why they’re looking at it,” he adds. “Their work is all based around honesty and integrity. There’s nothing better than having an honest partner.
“They’re good guys – we love them! I’d recommend them to anyone in business.”