An Oro Valley woman is the new program manager for the Pima County Economic Development and Tourism Department.

Catherine Strickland, who's been with the department since 2003, is responsible for developing economic development strategic plans and new programs to assist Pima County's leased and managed attractions "so they may increase their awareness and grow their educational and recreational services to the community," a release said.

Pima County leased properties include 15 diverse attractions primarily run on behalf of county residents by non-profit organizations. Among them are the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Pima Air and Space, Colossal Cave Mountain Park, Crooked Tree Golf Course, the fairgrounds and Old Tucson Studios.

Strickland also works with the Southern Arizona Attractions Alliance, a cooperative non-profit destination marketing organization consisting of 50 Southern Arizona attractions in various marketing disciplines.

Strickland is also the new chair of Pima County's Integrated Waste Management planning committee, which will help the attractions and Pima County vendors develop long-term programs to reduce waste and conserve natural resources.

Strickland is a summa cum laude graduate of the University of Arizona - Eller School of Management. She is a lifelong Oro Valley resident, Canyon Del Oro High School graduate, and musician at her church with her father, who plays the guitar.

The Department of Economic Development and Tourism acts as primary liaison with the business, academic and tourism community to enhance the economic well being of the region, the release said.

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