Regional Tourism Ambassador Program

Regional Tourism can sometimes be a tricky space. Working in the regions, we don’t always have a team on hand to troubleshoot, brainstorm or lean on. Prolonged drought and bushfires, followed by COVID-19 and now extensive flooding on the east coast, have made times tough in regional Australia and as an industry, we need to support each other as we move forward.

The Tourism Hub has been designed specifically for regional tourism professionals to connect, share information and best practice solutions to common challenges.

ART have formed a Regional Tourism Ambassador team to act as our community experts, and to develop and share relevant information through the Tourism Hub.

Are you interested in becoming a Regional Tourism Ambassador? Sign up to the Tourism Hub and fill in our Expression of Interest form and we’ll be in touch!

Regional Tourism Ambassadors


Alysia Brandenburg | Director at Alysia Brandenburg

Alysia has been involved in the regional tourism industry since her teens working in the family hotel in Dimboola, Victoria. Alysia holds a Master of Tourism from Monash University, is a Victorian Tourism Award Judge and has worked for multiple entities including resorts, tourism boards, associations and state government. She is a Non-Executive Director of Ecotourism Australia and holds IAP2 engagement certification.

Alysia has a passion and expertise for engaging in a collaborate manner, focused on sustainable destination planning, product experience architecture, community involvement and industry development. She was the architect of award-winning regional tourism experiences during her career at Parks Victoria and developed nature-based tourism strategies and products.

Alysia continues to work with clients in the experience economy on strategy, analysis and development. She has a personal commitment to the health benefits of engaging with nature and is dedicated to experience development that connects visitors with people, place and storytelling in a sustainable manner. She is highly regarded as a tourism specialist and industry leader, has a great team spirit, sense of humour and capacity to bring people together to progress concepts to reality.


Carolyn Childs | Futurist, Strategist, CEO at CEO, Futurist and Strategist Carolyn Childs’ passion is empowering travel organisations to succeed. Her career spans 30+ years & 35+ countries including with Travel Research Centre, the International Air Transport Association & heading TNS’s Australian travel vertical.

She is a top-rated speaker; has published an e-book (emerging markets) and white papers on Trends, Markets (e.g. India), Tourism Sectors (e.g. Luxury) & Policy (Taxes). She is Immediate Past President TTRA Asia-Pacific, a Certified Member of the Market Research Society, sits on World Tourism Association for Culture and Heritage’s Advisory Panel and was on the UNWTO Panel of World Tourism Experts.



Katrina Denoux | Postgraduate Academic & Lecturer – Agritourism & Culinary Tourism

Katrina Denoux is an Ambassador for Regional Tourism Australia. With M.HSc wellbeing practitioner & Gastronomic Tourism (Le Cordon Bleu) qualifications, she is a specialist in boutique heritage & nature-led regional accommodation, wellbeing itineraries, wine & gastronomic tourism, & specialises in the promotion of the three pillars of environmental, socio-cultural & economic sustainability. Her own postgraduate studies were in organic viticulture assays of international Agritourism regions. Operating tourism accom businesses in both France & Australia, she has had her feet firmly planted in the regional tourism community for the last two decades (actually, since tiny-tot years – travelling with her mum who had her career with Ansett Airlines!). She is also an Academic leader: a Learning Designer – developing degrees, training faculty, & lectures Postgraduate Tourism/Hospitality/Event Management & Sustainable Business Leadership, & is a judge for State Tourism Awards. Katrina is passionate about helping tourism businesses develop & champion themselves in the Experience Economy.


Peter Freeman | Managing Director & Digital Strategist at WOOF Media

Peter is the Managing Director at WOOF Media, a team of creative professionals who believes the visitor economy is one of the biggest opportunities to sustainably support our regions. Why? Well, it’s simple really – they want to make sure future generations can experience the quality of life those of us who ‘grew up in the country’ enjoyed.

Since 2001, the company has evolved from a small design studio in coastal South Australia to a distributed business with passionate team members across regional Australia and now Canada. Distance truly is no barrier to doing great work with good people. Peter and his team have developed campaigns such as the Aussie Travel Code, ‘Start Here‘ for Far North South Australia, and staff recruitment for Innamincka Hotel – all practical, impactful projects that realise WOOF Media’s vision of sustainably supporting regional communities. With more than 25 years experience in technology, travel, tourism and marketing, Peter is adept at cutting through the overwhelm facing so many regional businesses and tourism organisations when it comes to their digital marketing tactics and systems.



Giovanna Lever | Founder and Managing Director of Sparrowly Group

HI, I’m Giovanna Lever. I am the founder and Managing Director of Sparrowly Group leading its consulting, mentoring and training work for the visitor economy. I believe in the direct and indirect power of the visitor economy and work towards developing solutions that enable the sector’s continued success. And we’ve done that with over 500 small businesses throughout Australia through transformation projects with organisations including Macadamia Australia, South Australian Tourism Commission and the Department of Regional NSW.

I began Sparrowly Group in 2015 with a vision to help create better, sustainable businesses backed by a better workforce for the future. This is our continued focus. Adding continued value to this sector is key. This includes the development of two research papers on accessible tourism and career pathways.



Lori Modde | Managing Director of Lorick Management

Lori Modde has had a diverse career in community and economic development of over 25 years. From Regional Marketing Manager at Tourism NSW, Community and Economic Development Manager at a Local Government Authority through to Senior Manager of Place Activation and Strategy at Sydney Olympic Park Authority.

In the past 15 years through her business, Lorick Management, she has held roles such as Event Manager of the NSW Tourism Awards, Marketing Manager of New England North West Tourism and CEO of Outback NSW Tourism, Hills Hawkesbury Tourism and South Coast Tourism. Through her business she now hold the role of Project Manager for Sturt’s Steps in Outback NSW, CEO of Outdoors NSW and General Manager of Visitor Economy Development.



Ryan Smith | Chief Access Officer, The Access Agency

Chief Access Officer, Ryan Smith leads The Access Agency and consults on accessible and inclusive tourism. He is a qualified Access Consultant, has a degree in Design and is a widely traveled wheelchair user.

Ryan has worked with many organisations an government to raise the profile of Accessible and inclusive Tourism, to build capacity and grow opportunities. He delivers and consults on all areas of accessible tourism including capacity building, reporting, planning and innovation in product development.

He’s conducted in-person events with Tourism Australia, Visit VictoriaRed Cross Australia, Melbourne University, Accessible Inclusive Tourism Conference Asia Pacific (AITCAP), and many more.

Visit Victoria, Tourism and Events Queensland, City of Gold Coast, Tourism Northeast, Destination Gippsland, BengidoNEXT, Tourism MidWest Victoria and Cairns Hilton are among his clients.

He’s the acting-Chair of a not-for-profit disability organization and was a judge for the 2023 Victorian Tourism Awards. He has written for Architecture Australia’s Victorian Chapter on the future of accessible accommodation and been interviewed on ABC Radio and The Age.


Hannah Statham | Founder and Director, Media Mortar

Hannah might only just clear five foot, but she could easily enter herself into a heavy weight content marketing competition. Her signature move? Planting a target on your audience’s back and hitting them with bullseye accuracy. She’s first and foremost a content marketer, creating words, images and videos for clients, the kind of content that stops people in their thumb-scrolling tracks. With ten years’ experience in tourism and lifestyle marketing, Hannah brings a contagious energy to every task she does. She’s as creative as she is strategic and spends most of her time unashamedly working on her client’s big picture. When she’s not refreshing her Instagram feed, you’ll find Hannah searching for the best gnocchi in Brisbane.




Kate Shilling | Executive Officer of Ultimate Winery Experience Australia

Kate Shilling is a strategic sales and marketing professional, passionate about connecting tourism enterprises in regional Australia. With a strong track record in partnership marketing across the travel industry, Kate has worked with leading distributors, media, creative and digital agencies to develop and distribute innovative tourism experiences in Australia and overseas.

Kate’s CV includes leadership roles at Flight Centre, Tourism NT, NRMA Travel, Qantas Holidays, Helloworld and Australian Traveller Media.  Kate is the founder of Family History Holidays, the Chair of Destination Riverina Murray, and has been the Executive Officer of Ultimate Winery Experiences Australia for nearly two years.



Linda Tillman | Managing Director of Tilma Group

Linda is Managing Director of regional tourism and events agency, Tilma Group, and a recently retired Director on the Board of Australian Regional Tourism. She is a regional tourism strategist and practitioner boasting a suite of regional tourism and event expertise with LGAs and RTOs across Australia in regional tourism and event development, tourism strategy, destination marketing, regional branding, and event development. Linda is also the founder regional events capacity building program

Linda has a strong marketing and events background, coupled with intuitive skills in community and tourism development, and has worked on a range of regional tourism and events projects such as destination branding, regional tourism strategy and development, regional event strategies and capacity building, destination marketing campaigns, and industry training and mentoring. Linda has an intimate understanding of regional Australia and an innate ability to connect with regional communities that has been a standout over the past 20+ years of her career in regional tourism and events.

You can catch up on the Regional Tourism Ambassador team’s industry insights and posts through the blog featured on The Tourism Hub (free registration required).