The U.S. has a new head of its National Travel and Tourism Office (NTTO)—Mark L. Keam, who has been appointed deputy assistant secretary for travel and tourism in the International Trade Administration. As head of the NTTO, Keam and his team are charged with promoting the competitiveness of America’s industries, which in turn supports robust employment and economic growth for states and localities. The office produces research and works with Brand USA, the Tourism Policy Council, the Travel and Tourism Advisory Board and other private and public sector stakeholders to advance global travel and tourism.
Before joining the Biden Administration, Keam was a seven-term elected member of the Virginia House of Delegates where he led the Virginia Legislative Tourism Caucus. In addition to his experiences as a state legislator, he has served in federal and local governments, including as chief counsel to a United States Senate Assistant Leader.
As a naturalized immigrant, Keam has lived a global and multicultural life. He grew up and attended schools in five countries and traveled to over two dozen other nations. He, his wife and two children have visited every American state and some of its territories. He graduated from the University of California system with degrees in political science and law.
TTC Tour Brands has announced changes to the North American sales team with the promotion of Josh Hepp to vice president of national accounts from his current role as director of strategic accounts. Ursula Blackburne, who is working under The Travel Corporation’s (TTC) sales team will transition to North America sales manager, Brendan Vacations, a Celtic tour company included in TTC Tour Brands. Hepp joined TTC in December 2013 as a regional sales manager with Contiki. He has spent the past two years as director of national accounts. Prior to that he managed the sales managers on the West Coast and Midwest. Blackburne has been a part of the TTC North America sales team since February 2018 and will transition to focus solely on Brendan Vacations in her new role as North America sales manager.
Central Holidays, which includes USA product among its products, has announced changes in the organizational structure of the company. Adam Greis, who since 2017 has been responsible for directing the Group Travel Experiences brand, has been promoted to general manager of Central Holidays. As part of a realignment at the company, Maria Jose Merino, vice president of operations for Central Holidays will take on an expanded role to include the overall direction of product development. Under the new structure, Marco Evangelista serves as sales director for the Central Holidays brands and Margie Bell continues to serve as vice resident of sales.
Great Rail Journeys has promoted group chief financial officer Dave Riley to role of chief executive with oversight for the rail specialist and its sub-brands. Riley, who joined the business in October 2018, took over from Peter Liney earlier this month. GRJ said in the top role, Riley would be tasked with driving an “ambitious global growth agenda” at GRJ, which offers more than 200 independent and escorted rail and river cruise holidays in 50-plus countries. The business also owns Chicago-based rail holidays brand Vacations by Rail. GRJ was acquired by mid-market private equity firm Duke Street in July 2018.
Tourism Economics has announced that Dan Roberts has joined the company’s U.S. team in the role of senior economist. Dan brings considerable industry experience to our team from his years managing market and economic analysis for Choice Hotels. More recently, Dan has distinguished himself as director of research & market intelligence at Virginia Tourism Corporation where he established a foundation of data-driven decision making and accessibility throughout the organization.
Winnie Wang is the new vice president of revenue at Empire State Realty Trust (Empire State Building). She comes to her new role from Fairmont Hotels & Resorts in New York, where she served as director of revenue management. Previously, she was area director of revenue management for Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants.
Kelly Walker is the new head of distribution at easyJet holidays. She was most recently trade and partnerships manager at villa specialist Oliver’s Travels and previously James Villas. She took up the position at the carrier’s in-house tour operation last week, leading a distribution team which work with more than 3,000 agents.
BCD Travel has appointed Rene Villarreal as director of Mexico operations. Villarreal takes on his new role with more than 20 years of professional experience in commercial and operational areas support the new director of operations. The BCD Travel Program Management team is based in Monterrey and Saltillo.
Chris Simmonds has taken over as CEO of JG Travel Group, replacing Andy Freeth, who stepped down from the role. Simmonds joined the company a few months ago as marketing director. He was previously Saga Holidays CEO and also boss of Revitalise, a charity and provider of holidays for disabled people, said: “I am excited about the challenge and opportunities ahead. We have fantastic brands with massive addressable market and great prospects.”
Lindsey (Guinn) Stevens has been promoted to the position of vice president of marketing communications at the Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau. She was previously director of marketing communications. Prior to that she was international public relations manager for Visit California.
As announced last May, after almost six years with Gebeco Travel, Björn Oberländer has taken over the management of the tourism department at the travel agency chain Derpart. Oberländer brings substantial experience to the new job: he worked for Gebeco Travel in Kiel as a sales and service director, before that he headed the marketing and sales department at Aovoa Touristik in Hanover. DERPART is part of DER Touristik, the tourism division of the REWE Group.
The Argentinian Günther Leudesdorf is Air Canada‘s new general manager for Mexico and Colombia. The new appointment is aimed at strengthening the company’s presence in two of Latin America’s most important countries. Leudesdorf is originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he started his professional career in tourism and hospitality, then he continued in the financial services.
Agaxtur Travel, one of the 25 largest travel companies in Brazil, which markets domestic product as well as international product (to the USA and other destinations), has promoted Vilmara Souza to the position of product department manager. She brings 16 years’ experience to the job.Gold Medal has strengthened its team of destination managers with the appointment of Leanne Davies who will oversee East Coast USA and Canada. Davies joins from within the dnata Travel Group, which includes Gold Medal. She has been purchasing assistant for the Americas and Caribbean since 2017. Davies brings more than 10 years in the business. She will be based at Gold Medal’s Leyland head
Following are tour and travel industry jobs as posted by the recruiting firm, Searchwide Global. For more information, go their site, Searchwideglobal.com and click on JOBS.
- Vice president of finance & administration, Visit Franklin
- President & CEO, Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism
- Executive director, Baltimore Convention Center
- CEO, Society for Incentive Travel Excellence
- General manager-Charlotte Convention Center
- Vice president of enterprise sales, American Society of Association Executives™
- Director of sales, Preferred Hotel Management Company
- Director of communications, Santa Monica Travel & Tourism
- Senior sales manager, Royal Sonesta Minneapolis
- General manager (outdoor hospitality), upscale outdoor resort
- Resort manager, international luxury hotel company
- Senior vice president, community engagement & public affairs, Visit Seattle
- Northeast director of sales, luxury hospitality group sales organization
- Senior director of human resources & culture, Destinations International
- Vice president of business development, Explore Asheville Convention & Visitors Bureau
- President and CEO, Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Executive director, Explore Sisters
- National Sales Manager, Experience Scottsdale
- Executive director, Explore Butte County
- Downtown Vacaville, executive director
- Chief marketing officers, Visit Williamsburg
- Director of the film & creative industries office, Visit Dallas
- President and CEO, Visit Bath
- Executive director, Pacific County Tourism Bureau
- Director of group sales, Visit Vancouver WA
- General manager, Los Angeles Convention Center
- Chief executive officer, Discover Santa Clara™
- Vice president of sales, Bermuda Tourism Authority
- General manager, Moscone Center (ASM Global), San Francisco
- President and CEO, VisitGreenvileSC
- Vice president of sales, Visit Wichita
Readers might want to check out the linkedin site for jobs. There are usually hundreds of job descriptions and links, which are updated regularly. Some samples of jobs include these:
- Director, public relations, Resorts World Las Vegas
- Travel and tourism lecturer, Eden Brown Education
- Division coordinator, marketing, Lindblad Expeditions
- Copywriter, EF Go Ahead Tours
- International product development manager (shore excursions) American Queen Voyages™
Travel Wisconsin is looking for a Digital marketing Specialist in Madison Dance County, Click here for details.
Also, check out TheTravelVertical. Hundreds of jobs largely having to do with travel and tourism leadership positions, or in the digital side of the industry, can be found in this sister publication of the INBOUND Report.