Wanda Maloney was selected by the Executive Committee of the Blue Ridge Parkway Association (BRPA) to serve as the next Executive Director beginning March 1, 2022. Jessica Icenhour Roberts, BRPA Board President and Executive Director of the Mount Airy Tourism Development Authority, noted, “We had a wonderful selection of candidates and are thrilled with Wanda Maloney’s acceptance of BRPA’s Executive Director role. Maloney’s experience with byways will prove to be an asset as the Association moves into its next chapter.”
Maloney will join a staff of two full-time employees who are dedicated to marketing the scenic corridor of Shenandoah National Park, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park by providing travel information to visitors to the region. BRPA is a nonprofit organization comprised of businesses, communities and individuals working together to promote member businesses and organizations to approximately 15 million annual visitors who spend over $1.1 billion annually in the region.
“I’m passionate about scenic byways and could not be more excited to work with the Blue Ridge Parkway Association. I look forward to helping connect travelers to experiences along the Parkway as well as visitor services and unique local experiences in Blue Ridge Parkway communities,” Maloney explained.
Maloney has worked with scenic byways since 1996 when she joined the collaborative team developing the Georgia Scenic Byways Program. Following the launch of the Georgia program, Maloney was hired as a Byways Specialist for the America’s Byways Resource Center to provide training and technical assistance to byway organizations nationwide that were designated under the Federal Highway Administration’s National Scenic Byways Program. She was involved in the development and production of several key Resource Center publications, including Making the Grassroots Grow: Building and Maintaining Effective Byway Organizations and Conserving Our Treasured Places: Managing Visual Quality on Scenic Byways. She is also credited with the creation of The Road Beckons: Best Practices for Byways, a competition designed to recognize outstanding byway projects.
Maloney founded Corridor Solutions in 2005 to provide policy, planning, and organizational development consulting services for byway programs and scenic byway management organizations. Since then, she has worked with byways across the country, including the Flaming Gorge – Green River All-American Road in Wyoming, the Lincoln Highway in Nebraska, and the Wisconsin Great River Road, to develop corridor management plans and national designation applications. She served as Program Coordinator for the Florida Scenic Highways Program for six years and developed the state’s current scenic byway guidance. Her areas of expertise include the byway visitor experience, where she has combined her extensive experience traveling byways with research and visitor feedback data to develop training tools and enhancement strategies for byway leaders. She believes understanding the needs and preferences of visitors is key to delivering rewarding travel experiences that visitors want to repeat and share.
Maloney served on the board of directors of the National Scenic Byway Foundation for six years and remains actively involved as a volunteer and training partner for webinars and virtual workshops. In 2021, she managed the Foundation’s “Love Our Byways” micro-grant program sponsored by Toyota.
Maloney is a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and currently lives in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She holds a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s in public administration from the University of Houston.