Executive Board

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Sarah leads the Destination Marketing Sales team at TripAdvisor, for the Asia Pacific region. The team is focused on working with and supporting all tourism boards in Asia Pacific, as well as helping local hospitality businesses better understand the impact of digital on their business. Under Sarah’s leadership, the Asia Pacific team launched the first TripAdvisor’s Destination Academy, a three-day Digital Boot camp for government organisations and the CEO Challenge, a regional campaign that supports the discovery of less well-known destinations in the region.

Prior to her current role, Sarah was based in TripAdvisor’s London office as part of the Destination Marketing Sales team and was responsible for the European, Asian and African markets. During that time, she worked closely with key clients such as South Africa Tourism and Greek National Tourism Organization, sharing best practices with industry partners. Her work with South Africa Tourism on its first global strategic partnership was featured in the recent UNWTO E-Marketing Handbook.

Prior to joining TripAdvisor, Sarah held MICE and international marketing positions at the Hong Kong Tourism Board and Visit Flanders, where she worked with industry partners drive awareness of both destinations. Sarah was a senior executive at Cesar Ritz Colleges in Hong Kong before that.

Born and raised in Hong Kong SAR, Sarah has also lived in Beijing and Australia and is fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese, giving her a deep understanding and appreciation of the region.

 

Dr. Chris Bottrill is the Dean of the Faculty of Global and Community Studies at Capilano University in North Vancouver, Canada. He holds a PhD in tourism network and destination development.

Chris oversees programming and development in tourism and hospitality fields in a complex portfolio involving five academic schools, international projects, and aboriginal education programming. He has taught a wide array of tourism topics including destination development, sustainability, marketing, and entrepreneurship at universities in Canada, New Zealand, the USA, and Austria.

Chris has extensive applied industry experience having completed over 50 tourism management and development projects around the globe. These have included new product feasibility analyses, marketing strategies, resource assessments, and multiple stakeholder engagement processes. He has also presented on tourism related topics ranging from Olympic preparedness to community tourism development at conferences and forums in China, Canada, Russia, Finland, New Zealand, Vietnam, Malaysia, India, and Cambodia.

Chris’s first experience with PATA was as a conference volunteer in Vancouver in 1995. He joined PATA in 2011 and has participated in a wide array of roles. He has served as the Chair of the Human Capital Development (HCD) Committee and Vice Chair of the Sustainability and Social Responsibility Committee since 2014, and he has also been a Trustee with the PATA Foundation for the past two years. During his tenure as Chair and Vice Chair, Chris initiated a revision of both committee terms of reference, rebuilt committee membership, and led the formation of action plans which have seen many initiatives begin and come to fruition. In his role as HCD Chair he also facilitated highly successful Youth Symposiums in Phnom Penh, Chengdu, and Bangalore.

Chris is also the Director of the acclaimed PATA supported Vietnam Community Tourism project aimed at protecting ethnic hill tribe culture through tourism, and last year he led a PATA Pacific Asia study on Indigenous Tourism and Human Rights.

Chris recognises the immense and unique value of the PATA network, the history of collegiality and community building, and would value the opportunity to continue contributing through the Executive Board.

 

Stephen Pearce, Member

Stephen Pearce is a strategic marketer with over thirty years’ experience in destination marketing and development. He sees himself as a change-agent; negotiating and implementing strategic alliances and partnerships with public and private businesses to compete effectively.  Curiosity, risk, creativity and innovation define his approach to market synthesis and development.

Stephen has worked with public and private companies across Canada, and has been with Tourism Vancouver since 2001 where he is currently the Vice President of Leisure Travel and Digital Marketing.  Responsibilities include consumer marketing, travel trade, digital marketing, research, and business technologies.  He coordinates campaigns in 11 geographic markets around the globe.

Stephen is very active at the national level; having served as the Chair of the Canadian Tourism Commission’s Research Advisory Committee for seven years, and currently serving on the Emerging Market Committee.  Stephen is also the Chair of the BC chapter of the Canada China Business Council and a Board member of PATA.

An avid traveller, he has lived across Canada, in Germany and in Uganda. He has also led volunteer missions in Tanzania and Kyrgyzstan to develop and grow their tourism economies.

Stephen has an MA in Geography from the University of Western Ontario and an MBA in Marketing from the University of York.

 

Andrew Jones grew up in the hotel business as his parents managed Country Inns and Restaurants in the United Kingdom. Over the past 45 years, he has worked in numerous senior management and corporate positions for prestigious hotels, resorts and management companies in London, Bermuda, Canada, Hong Kong and across Asia.

In 1996, Andrew embarked on a new journey.  He founded and became the Guardian of Sanctuary Resorts a resort management company creating responsible and sustainable tourism experiences where people can balance their body, mind and spirit in an environmentally friendly space.

As part of his PATA service to Industry, Andrew is an active member of the Board of Trustees for the PATA Foundation and Advisor on CSR and Responsible and Sustainable Tourism for PATA. Andrew is also a member of the World Travel Market and World Responsible Tourism Day Advisory Panel.

A Certified Hotel Administrator of the American Hotel and Lodging Association, and a Fellow of the Institute of Hospitality, Andrew was previously a member of the Board of the Indian Ocean Tourism Organization and Director, Asia Pacific Affairs for the International Hotel and Restaurant Association.

Andrew is a leading proponent of Corporate Social Responsibility and Wellness in Tourism and is a knowledgeable Keynote Speaker, Moderator and Panellist on matters of Responsible and Sustainable Tourism at many Hotel, Environment and Social Enterprise Forums and Conferences as well as at Universities and Vocational Schools.

Andrew believes in directly contributing to the community in which he lives and is Chairman Emeritus of the KELY (Kid’s Everywhere Like You) Support Group, a Past President of the Rotary Club of Kowloon, and a supporter of numerous other Charitable organisations and Social Ventures in Hong Kong.

 

Hailed as a respected professional in Sri Lankan tourism, Hiran Cooray contributes an impressive mixture of passion, honesty, integrity and tenacity to the industry. Carrying on the legacy of his father, the late Herbert Cooray, Hiran is the current Chairman of Jetwing – a family owned company which counts a storied history of over 4 decades. His achievements are numerous and much acclaimed, being educated at the prestigious St. Joseph’s in Colombo and going on to graduate from the University of North Carolina prior to following a General Manager’s course at Cornell University. Hiran has been Chairman of PATA Sri Lanka Chapter (2003/4), a Sri Lanka representative on the Board of Directors of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) (2010/12), President of the Tourist Hotels Association of Sri Lanka (2005/8) and was recently appointed as an Alternate Member of the UNWTO – World Committee on Tourism Ethics 2013-2017.  Hiran has also served President of Tourist Hotels Association of Sri Lanka from 2014 to 2016.

Today, Hiran sits on the Board of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau. In addition, he holds over 50 director positions in various hotels and related companies – making him a much sought after speaker/panellist at tourism-related international forums.

 

A native of Guam, Jon Nathan “Nate” Pangilinan Denight has more than 15 years of private sector marketing experience, specializing in brand management, video production and event planning. He served as Deputy General Manager for the Guam Visitors Bureau since July 2011 and in January 2015, was unanimously appointed to serve as GVB’s President & CEO. More recently, he served as the Chairman for the coordinating committee of the prestigious 12th Festival of Pacific Arts, which Guam hosted in May 2016. Under Denight’s leadership, GVB also hosted the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Annual Summit and the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Ministerial Debate, a first for the Pacific region.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in commerce from Santa Clara University in California in June 1999, Denight returned to Guam to begin his career. He quickly worked his way up from Business Development Manager to General Manager at Mark’s Motors Honda. In 2004, he opened up his own company, Revolution Productions, and then in 2007, joined Denight Marketing Group as Creative Director. While managing both positions, he developed marketing campaigns and events for some of Guam’s largest businesses and brands, as well as created several TV shows and publications.

During his time at the Bureau, Guam reached its best year in tourism history with over 1.53 million visitors in 2016 through efforts to grow and diversify Guam’s source visitor markets. Through his leadership, GVB also won numerous awards overseas and in the local community, most notably the Department of Commerce export award and the Pacific Daily News best agency award two years in a row. Denight is the co-author of the Tourism 2020 plan, which sets to transform Guam into a world class destination of choice by the year 2020.

Denight enjoys travel and sports. He lives on Guam with his wife Lana and his dog Cali.

 

Mohamed Sallauddin is the General Manager of Airline Marketing at MAHB. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accountancy and Computer Science from Northern Illinois University, USA in 1985. He also holds a Master in Business Administration (MBA) (Strategic Management) Degree from the International Business School, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia.

His association with the aviation industry began when he was recruited by Malaysia Airlines (MAS) as a Management Trainee in 1986. He further enriched his aviation repertoire when he joined Malaysia’s first aircraft manufacturing company Composite Technology Research Malaysia (CTRM) Sdn. Bhd. in 1997, which afforded him the opportunity to serve in general aviation sectors in the USA and Australia.  His employment with MAHB in 2001 saw him joining the cadres that led the marketing of the international gateways managed by MAHB that eventually allowed him to lead MAHB to organise Asia’s first World Route Development Forum in Kuala Lumpur in 2008. He is highly committed to making KLIA as the Next Generation Hub for both commercial airlines and travellers which are aligned to MAHB’s grand vision in years to come.

He currently serves as a Council Member of the Institute of Marketing Malaysia since 2007 and was also Executive Board Member of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) for 2013-2015. His present appointment as Deputy Chairman of the PATA Malaysia Chapter underlines his belief that aviation and tourism are complementary to each other in generating sustainable air travel.

 

Peter Semone is managing partner of the strategic advisory organisation Destination Human Capital and founder of the internationally acclaimed Lanith – Lao National Institute of Tourism and Hospitality vocational school in Laos.

He has acted as Chief Technical Adviser and Team Leader for European donor and Asian Development Bank projects. He also consults for United Nations agencies including the World Tourism Organisation and International Labour Organisation.

Peter is the Chairman of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Foundation. From 2002-2006, he worked as PATA’s Vice President and over the past 20 years has served on a variety of the organisation’s committees and task forces.

Following university studies in US East Coast Ivy League colleges, Peter founded a destination management company that provided shore logistics services to cruise ships at ports-of-call throughout Indonesia and participated in an assortment of tourism start-ups. He sold his stake in the company in 2000. Peter’s introduction to working in Southeast Asia came in 1991 when he was engaged by PATA and the Indonesian Government to implement the 2,000 delegate PATA Annual Conference held in Bali, Indonesia.

Peter is widely published in peer-reviewed journals on topics related to tourism development and destination human capital. He enjoys lecturing and is in continual pursuit of a PhD in international tourism development studies. In his free time, Peter spends time with his family in Bali.

 

Born in Macao, Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of East Asia, Macao (now University of Macau), in 1987.  After her internship at the Luso International Banking Limited, she came on board the Marketing Department of the Macao Government Tourist Office in 1988, and throughout the years organised many local and overseas tourism exhibitions, conferences, seminars, marketing, and promotional activities of different scale.

Fernandes speaks fluent English, Cantonese, Mandarin and Portuguese.  With 10-years of experience and relentless dedication to her work, she became one of the two Deputy Directors in September of 1998, where she continues to be highly involved in the marketing and promotion of Macao as a tourism destination. Ms. Fernandes was appointed as Director of MGTO in December of 2012.

She concurrently serves as Coordinator of the Tourism Crisis Management Office of the Macao SAR Government and is member of the Tourism Development Committee, MICE Development Committee, Economic Development Committee, Cultural Advisory Committee, Creative Industries Committee, Urban Planning Committee, among others, of the Macao SAR Government.

 

Pilar Laguaña has successfully led the Guam Visitors Bureau Marketing Department for nearly four decades, drawing from a wealth of over 38 years of leadership and managerial experience in international tourism and the travel industry. Pilar’s background also includes more than 30 years of Micronesia regional tourism marketing, experience in international advertising and public relations, global brand development & management, business development with heavy emphasis in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Russia, China, USA and the Philippines,  global event planning & management, multi-national digital media management, and customer & industry relations.

Pilar is a proven and energetic leader in global project management, strategic planning, integrated and global social media marketing, global media and trade relations, government procurement, and contract negotiations. Her strength in developing strategic and tactical direction, visionary and proven leadership, team building, and her aggressive passion and commitment to the Guam Visitors Bureau, its membership and the people of Guam have been the foundation of her continued success.

Pilar is responsible for the establishment, overall planning, development, implementation, coordination and supervision of all the bureau’s worldwide marketing and promotional activities with wide latitude in the exercise of independent judgment and actions. She is in charge of the bureau’s marketing department, its personnel and overseas marketing offices, and negotiates contracts with vendors in a highly efficient manner.

Some of Pilar’s most recent contributions include development, management and supervision of the bureau’s first-ever integrated and award-winning global social media campaign as well as establishing new markets and air route service into Guam.  In addition to accomplishments promoting and branding Guam as a premiere travel destination, Pilar also provides leadership support to the national and state tourism offices of the Micronesia island nations.  Pilar is currently Chairperson the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), Micronesia Chapter.

 

Ben is a corporate ambassador for Centara Hotels & Resorts, the sustainable growing Thai-owned hotel chain. She is responsible for strengthening relations between Centara and the owners of Centara-managed hotels currently located in 11 countries in Asia and Indian Ocean.

Ben represents Centara in various Industry Councils and Associations. She was a Chairperson for PATA Thailand Chapter in 2014-2015 and currently is a member of Executive Committee of PATA Thailand Chapter. She is a member of Academic Committee of Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT), an active committee member of Hospitality Committee and Human Development Committee of Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA). She is a frequent speaker at tourism industry events including PATA’s and a guest lecturer at Universities in Thailand, Philippines and China.

Currently, Ben is also representing TCT at Joint Public & Private Working Committee to develop workforce from Thailand Vocational Education for Hotel and Tourism Industry.

Ben has been assisting Thailand Research Fund under Project Coordinator Tourism and Hospitality Management Program since 2014. As one of their tourism expert panel, she helps evaluate the Tourism & Hospitality Research Proposals.

Before joining Centara, Ben worked for the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) at its head office in Bangkok as PATA Regional Director – Greater Mekong/Director of PATA Chapter Development. Ben started her career in the hospitality industry at the Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Tower in Bangkok. She had also worked at the Shangri-La Hotel and The Mandarin Oriental.

Ben was born in Chiangrai, Thailand. She went to Chiangmai University for her bachelor degree in Mass Communications in 1996. In 2003, she earned her Mini-MBA from Chulalongkorn University. Ben married to an American, Scott Montgomery. They have 2 amazing daughters, Sophia and Grace. The couple raises their children to be citizens of the world.

 

Anthony Lau took up the position of Executive Director of the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) in 2007 and is responsible for managing and guiding the promotion of the city as one of the world’s leading destinations for business and leisure travellers.  Working in alliance with the Board of the HKTB, Government and tourism-related trade and organisations, Anthony provides overall leadership in mapping the strategic direction of HKTB, guiding the organisation in responding to emerging tourism trends with creative strategies, and building successful partnerships with a variety of stakeholders.

Anthony serves on a number of tourism-related boards and committees in Hong Kong, including the Advisory Committee on Travel Agents and the Advisory Committee on Cruise Industry. He is also a director of the Hong Kong-Taiwan Economic and Cultural Co-operation and Promotion Council, an executive committee member of the Hong Kong Arts Festival Society, and a member of the Advisory Board of PMQ.

 

Soon-Hwa has over 30 years of extensive experience in the Asia-Pacific tourism and hospitality industry.

Currently, he is the Asia Pacific Regional Director at Blacklane, a new tech professional chauffeur service provider offering rides in over 500 airports in some 250 cities in 50 countries globally.

Prior to this, he was Vice President of the Hertz International for Asia & Japan, opened the regional HQ in1993 in Singapore and built the business from scratch to what is now the regional market leader. He spent 3 years in Shanghai from 2007 to 2010 where he supervised the China business.Prior to Hertz, he was the SE Asia Regional Manager for Air New Zealand, GM of Marketing for Mansfield Travel and Deputy GM of Avis Singapore.

Prior to Hertz, he was the SE Asia Regional Manager for Air New Zealand, GM of Marketing for Mansfield Travel and Deputy GM of Avis Singapore.A BBA graduate of the National University of Singapore, he is also a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing UK and attended the Stanford Executive Program.

A BBA graduate of the National University of Singapore, he is also a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing UK and attended the Stanford Executive Program.Soon-Hwa is presently serving as Chairman of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Singapore

Soon-Hwa is presently serving as Chairman of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Singapore Chapter and is a member of the Industry Council. He has served in many positions within PATA over the years and was a recipient of the PATA Award of Merit in 2008.

 

Faeez Fadhlillah is the CEO and Co-founder of Tripfez, an innovative, state of the art travel portal dedicated to the rise of global Muslim travellers.

Named as one of Forty Individuals Who Shaped Southeast Asian E-Commerce by EcommerceIQ, Faeez is also an avid speaker at many international travel conferences and seminars and currently chairs the R&D committee of the Malaysian Association of Tour & Travel Agents (MATTA). Faeez was elected as Vice President of MATTA, Malaysia’s largest travel association for the term 2015 -2017.

Faeez was named 30 under 30 by Forbes magazine in 2016, 40 Under 40 by Prestige, Top 10 Young Entrepreneur Rising by Top 10, People To Watch 2016 by TTG as well as the Most Innovative Young Leaders Award 2016 by UCSI.Heading the brand of

Heading the brand of Tripfez and Salam Standard, Faeez advocates the concept of localising the travel experience through information enabling travellers to make an informed decision. He has been featured in major publications including BBC, CNBC, Forbes, TTG, and more.

Faeez works very closely with various Destination Marketing Organizations (DMO) to promote the concepts of localisation of travel and inclusive travel experiences. Faeez graduated from the University of Sydney with first class honours from the School of Engineering.