We are pleased to introduce to you our speakers for the 2020 ART Virtual Convention, additional profiles will be added over the coming weeks so please keep checking in with us!
Convention Speakers 2020
Introduced to the world of destination organizations by a random internship application to Visit Baltimore (then known as Baltimore Area Convention & Visitors Association), Andreas Weissenborn began an unexpected career into hospitality that left him with a continued passion towards the tourism industry.
Weissenborn spent just short of 11 years with Visit Baltimore helping with its Research, Technology, and Information Systems across the organization. In 2017, he joined the Association on behalf of a Destinations International Foundation initiative to be a dedicated research source for Destinations International.
Colin is the founder of Causeway Innovation and was previously the founding CEO of the Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast. He has worked with over 300 startups, small and mid-sized firms and large corporates with a focus on business development through innovation. Colin is also Course Facilitator for the New Venture Planning course in the Executive MBA program at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
Colin’s business career started in London where he became International Product Manager for Dulux before moving on to be the co-founder and CEO of Yellowbrick Training & Development with SME and corporate clients such as IBM, Unilever, Marriott International and Deloitte in the UK, Canada and USA. In recent years, Colin has worked with owner managers of small and mid-sized businesses across regional Australia in a wide range of sectors including food and agribusiness, tourism, health and wellbeing, ICT, environment, creative and professional services.
Craig Wickham is the owner and Managing Director of Exceptional Kangaroo Island as well as the Chair of Australian Wildlife Journeys. Craig lives and works on Kangaroo Island where he grew up in a business family with a range of tourism ventures. He studied wildlife management and worked with the South Australian National Parks Service before getting into private enterprise.
Craig has been travelling internationally promoting his touring business, Kangaroo Island and Australia for over 20 years. Craig, his wife Janet, their family and their local team have been in business since 1990.
Leadership and sustainability are two primary tenets Craig follows, and he has been a consistent contributor to community and industry. He has held board positions with the South Australian Tourism Commission, SA National Parks Council, Regional Community Consultative Council, Regional Development Board, Natural Resources Board, Presiding Member of the local Development Assessment Panel; and ten years in Local Government including four as Deputy Mayor.
In running their Kangaroo Island tourism enterprise, Craig and Janet have successfully navigated a succession of business challenges: historically high-interest rates (24%!); the long shadow of the Pilot's Strike; SARS; Bird 'Flu; Swine 'Flu; Equine Influenza; MERS; September 11; the collapse of Ansett which took out Kendell Air, the primary air service provider to their region; bankruptcy of their biggest customer; and a succession of bushfires including the extraordinary January 2020 events before COVID19. Key learning: innovate or fade away!
Dr Gabby Walters
Dr Gabby Walters is an Associate Professor in Tourism with the University of Queensland’s Business School. She holds significant expertise in image and reputation management and in particular market recovery following crises and disastrous events. Her research focuses primarily on the tourism sector. She has conducted numerous consultancies and projects with tourism destinations from different parts of the world seeking to enhance or revitalise their reputations and regain trust among the tourism market as a result one or many critical events.
She has a well-established publication record including her recently published book "Image and Reputation Recovery for the Tourism and Hospitality Industry" (Goodfellow, 2019) and she is the Associate Editor of a reputable academic publication – the Journal of Vacation Marketing. In 2017 her work in the tourism and hospitality field was recognised through the Centre of Australian Universities Tourism and Hospitality Education (CAUTHE) Fellows Award.
Gabby is passionate about using her work to assist destinations through all phases of the recovery process. Her presentations are filled with current research led facts that will be beneficial to all tourism stakeholders whether they be from small business, destination marketing authorities or government.
Sara Quon has been the Chief Executive Officer of The Sovereign Hill Museums Association since January 2019. Sara is a strategy and marketing professional with two decades of experience across tourism, major events and fast-moving consumer goods.
Sara's previous roles include Group CEO of Beechworth Honey, inaugural CEO of Tourism North East Regional Tourism Board, Marketing Director and Interim CEO of Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.
Sara currently sits on the board of Visit Victoria and the Committee for Ballarat and also serves on the Council of Australian Museum Directors executive. In February, 2020, Sara was appointed to the Federal Government’s Regional Tourism Bushfire Recovery Grants Advisory Panel.