Chairman pushes for unified approach

THE new chairman of Tourism Whitsundays, Chris Jacobs said he will be pushing for a more unified approach within the tourism industry.

He said this week that he would constantly challenge the board, the CEO and the staff to look at the effectiveness of the organisation and to seek new ways of attracting more visitors to the region.

“The region is ready for a change, a much more unified approach and a big go forward,” he said.

“It will be exciting to be a part of that.”

Mr Jacobs is Executive Director of Cruise Whitsundays and moved to the Whitsundays in January this year.

He has been a director of TW since April.

He first came to the Whitsundays seven years ago and set up Cruise Whitsundays about five years ago.

Originally from Melbourne, Mr Jacobs has worked in the tourism industry for 28 years, starting as a coach touring guide in the UK.

He spent 22 years in New Zealand where he ran a cruise company and his company also operates a similar operation in Fiji. “Many of the issues and challenges that the Bay of Islands and Northland region faced are so similar to the Whitsundays that I have frequent déjÀ vu attacks,” he said.

“The Whitsundays is a stunning region but it just doesn't have the recognition and visitation it deserves and I have a very clear idea of where I think we need to go and how TW can help bring that about,” he said.

“In my view TW's primary role is destination marketing and while we also have other areas we are involved in such as destination development, our reason for being is to attract visitors to the Whitsundays,” he said.

Mr Jacobs served as a Board member for Destination Northland in New Zealand for 12 years, assisting in the re-invention of that body to become New Zealand's leading Regional Tourism Organisation.

Adrian Bram, Whitsunday Sailing Adventures, was elected as Vice Chairman; Jeff Aquilina, Water's Edge and Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat was re-elected as Treasurer; and TW CEO Peter O'Reilly remains Secretary.


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