About The CCVB

The Calhoun County Visitors Bureau was formed in 1979 and is the only organization that promotes Calhoun County regionally and nationally as a destination for business meetings, sporting events, and tourism-related activities.

The mission of the Calhoun County Visitors Bureau is to enhance the Battle Creek/Calhoun County economy through tourism – to position and sell our community, in partnership with public and private sectors, as a premier destination for competitive sporting events, conventions, tradeshows, corporate meetings, group tours, and individual leisure travel. In pursuit of its mission, the CVB generates increased visitor spending, local tax receipts and job development.

Our Team


Linda Freybler

Linda Freybler is the CEO of the Calhoun County Visitors Bureau and is responsible for the general direction, management and policy oversight of the CVB and all of its human and capital resources. Linda has over 25 years of experience including 15 years with the Kellogg Company. She has Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees from Michigan State University. As CEO, Linda has led the reorganization and rebranding of the Calhoun County Visitors Bureau – increasing tourism to the county through more effective business strategies and partnerships with tourism related businesses.  In 2015, she led the creation of the Battle Creek Welcome Center and retail store in downtown Battle Creek.   In 2018, she added the Cereal History Exhibit.  Linda is a recognized in the tourism industry as a leader and has been honored to serve as the President of the Cereal City Development Corporation which runs Kellogg Arena, is a Past-President of the Michigan Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus, current secretary of the West Michigan Tourist Association, and by invitation of Travel Michigan serves on the Conference Planning Committee for the Governor’s Conference on Tourism.


Heather Lawson

Business Services Manager


Ensuring the business side of the CVB runs smoothly, Heather handles all the finance/accounting functions. The Business Services Manager also assists the CEO with budgeting, scheduling board meetings, creating board packets and taking minutes at board meetings. Heather is responsible for scheduling Visitors Services staff and volunteers that work in our Welcome Center and Souvenir store. In addition, she maintains inventory for the store as well as office supplies. Heather has an Associates degree in Applied Science majoring in Accounting from KCC.


Kimber Thompson

Marketing Manager


With an extensive graphic design background, Kimber is responsible for a variety of marketing activities. She designs and oversees the production of our Visitors Guide, various brochures and print ads. Kimber is the Calhoun County Certified Tourism Ambassador (CTA) program manager, which is designed to promote enthusiasm and positivity for our area. She is helping to design interactive exhibits for the Cereal History Museum, attends Chamber of Commerce events in Marshall and Albion, and was on the committee that brought us the Battle Creek Fantasy Forest at Leila Arboretum. She also has served on multiple boards, and currently sits on the board at Leila Arboretum. Kimber has a Bachelor’s degree in Advertising from Michigan State University. In her spare time, Kimber has painted murals in Marshall, Battle Creek, Athens, and Coldwater.


Becca Pelton

Digital Marketing & Technology Manager


Becca is responsible for all of the CVB’s digital marketing.  She develops and manages both the CVB website as well as the Southern Swing website providing overall direction for the sites and managing content.  In addition, Becca is managing the CVB’s social media strategy, content and accounts.  She also writes blogs and takes photos.  In addition, she manages  the CVB’s content on partner websites including Pure Michigan and West Michigan Tourist Association and develops online advertising. Becca also provides technology support for the office.   Becca has a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Michigan State University.


Jay Gladstone

Director of Sales


Jay promotes and sells Calhoun County as a premier sports and meeting destination. Jay also works hand in hand with event planners to provide visitor services and ensure that their attendees will have a wonderful experience in our community. Jay has over 10 years of experience in the hospitality industry and a Bachelor’s degree in Tourism and Travel from Western Michigan University.


Emily Freybler

Advertising Designer


Emily adds to our county-wide marketing efforts with videography, photography and graphic design support. She creates promotional videos, website and social media banners, print materials and a variety of other materials. Emily has a degree in Advertising and Graphic Design from Michigan State University.


Kelli Beattie

Sales Coordinator


Kelli is responsible for managing our Southern Swing golf co-op. This includes, assisting golfers with information on golf courses and hotels, creating packages as requested and following up with golfers on packages, working with courses and lodging to prepare packages and bookings, managing packages, and assisting in the marketing efforts to promoting Southern Swing. She is also responsible for assisting the sales director in researching new leads, coordinating information for proposals from area partners, fulfilling requests for meeting and sports facility guides. Previously, Kelli worked at Yarrow Golf and Conference Resort as a Golf Coordinator and Conference Service Manager for 12 years. Kelli has an Associates degree in Fire Science from Kellogg Community College and Kalamazoo Valley Community College and has been part of the volunteer fire and first responder service since 2011.


Stacy Laur

Simba the Rough Collie


Rough Collie

Simba is the newest member of the CCVB and belongs to Becca Freybler. His job is to greet visitors, explore the office, play with the whole staff, and his favorite… sleep. Simba may look big but he is a sweety, who just loves to lick.