Moliterno Resigns From South Walton TDC - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Moliterno Resigns From South Walton TDC

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South Walton Tourist Development Council Executive Director, Dawn Moliterno, resigned following an impassioned speech addressing the Walton Board of Commissioners.

A hush fell over those in attendance leading up to her announcement.

"Therefore, I'm hereby rendering my 90 days...my resignation," said a stoic, yet determined Moliterno; effectively resigning as Executive Director of South Walton Tourist Development Council.

News 13 spoke with Moliterno after her announcement about the reasons behind her departure. She addressed what she called "hateful" rhetoric and she said enough was enough.

"You know, it was a personal decision, one that I didn't take lightly. I firmly believe when you do everything you're supposed to do, it's time to move on to the next chapter in life," said Moliterno.

Speaking Tuesday before the Commission, she passionately addressed the success of the TDC since she came on board in 2010, just days before the BP oil spill that ravaged the Gulf Coast and it's tourism industry.

"In face of disaster, in face of critical times, we were able to overcome, we were able to exceed everybody's expectations," she said to News 13.

Moliterno has seen success in her role. She's overseen the dissemination of 8 million in BP grants. In 2012, she was appointed to the Board of Directors of VISIT FLORIDA, the State's official tourism marketing corporation.

Yet in the last year, both her professional and personal lives have come under attack via blogs and in message boards.

"You know, you teach your kids to be nice to others and criticism comes with the job, but when it starts to get personal and it's unfounded, I just got to a place where I teach them to not be bullied and it was time for me to stand up and lead by example," she said.

Moliterno said she doesn't know what's next for her, but expects to move back to the private sector. She says she'll miss her team, but she is at peace over her decision and looks forward to more time with her family.

In the meantime, she vowed to work hard for South Walton in her last 90 days.

Stay tuned to News 13 for more on this developing story.