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Gudger named Alabama Tourism Advocate of the Year

State Sen. Garlan Gudger was recently recognized at the 2023 Alabama Governor’s Conference on Tourism as the state’s main tourism government advocate.

Gudger (R-Cullman), vice chair of the state’s Fiscal Responsibility and Economic Development Committee, was the youngest person  to be elected to the Cullman City Council. He served for 14 years, including president for the last 10 years.

Lee Sentell, director of the Alabama Tourism Department, touted the Yellowhammer State’s tourism industry.

“We have incredibly strong tourism industry professionals in Alabama, and those recognized this year are no exception,” said Sentell. “Their unwavering leadership and dedication continue to elevate Alabama as one of the go-to destinations in America.

“We are proud to recognize the people and organizations that contribute to the success of tourism in the state.”

In 1999,Gudger was the second-generation owner of an architectural salvage business that was established out of a garage in 1969.

Under the direction of Gudger, Southern Accents Architectural Antiques has grown into one of the top five architectural salvage companies in the nation. Southern Accents was also awarded “Best Antique Store in Alabama.”

Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.

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