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John O’Sullivan to Chair TTNQ Board


Experience Co Limited Chief Executive Officer John O’Sullivan has been appointed Chair of Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) at the Annual General Meeting today (October 19).

Mr O’Sullivan has been a Director of TTNQ since May 2021 and is a regular visitor to Tropical North Queensland where Experience Co Limited operates Great Barrier Reef cruises, sky diving and a rainforest high ropes course.

The former Managing Director of Tourism Australia, Mr O’Sullivan replaces Chair Ken Chapman who has completed his three-year term.

Chief Executive Officer Mark Olsen welcomed Mr O’Sullivan as Chair and thanked Dr Chapman for his three years of service during the toughest time the tourism industry had ever faced.

“Ken’s unfaltering support for the region’s tourism industry and consistent approach to recovery helped to elevate our advocacy and secured millions of dollars in direct industry support,” he said.

“The $10 million in Federal Recovery Regions Funding secured to support our domestic recovery in 2021 through TTNQ’s advocacy not just for our industry, but for our regional economy, has helped to deliver record after record, culminating in $4.3 billion expenditure last financial year.

“After much lobbying TTNQ then became the only regional tourism organisation in Australia to get the support of the Federal Government for our international recovery.

“TTNQ has already generated publicity worth nearly $30 million in just three months to assist our international recovery after receiving $15 million from the Australian Government’s International Tourism Recovery Program administered by Austrade.

“Thank you, Ken, for your insight and guidance.”

Dr Chapman paid tribute to Mr Olsen, the TTNQ Board, staff and members who had worked together to tackle the most challenging three years in the history of the organisation.

“Despite this adversity, it has also been a time of great achievement with exceptional outcomes,” he said.

“I leave the Board knowing the organisation is in the best shape it has ever been and confident that our best times are still ahead of us.”

Mr O’Sullivan said he looked forward to chairing the TTNQ Board through the next three years to achieve the organisation’s goal of $5 billion in visitor expenditure by 2025.

Nikki Giumelli was elected to the Board and retiring Director Ben Woodward was re-elected.

Ms Giumelli is a tourism project manager through her business Green Arrow Consultancy and Mr Woodward is the Director of Sales and Marketing for The CaPTA Group.

The highlights of TTNQ’s 2022-23 Annual Report were:

  • Increasing visitor spend to a record $4.3 billion
  • Increasing the region’s share of Queensland’s visitor nights to 16.7%
  • Generating 224,000 operator referrals from website traffic of 1.75 million
  • Generating 133 business events leads valued at $92 million and 68 confirmed events valued at $46 million
  • Successful bids for ATEC Meeting Place (November 22), G'day Australia (October 23), Destination IQ, Destination Q and Queensland Tourism Awards (November 23) 
  • Increasing publicity for the region by 48% to $274 million
  • Launching the Sustainable Travel Hub and Accessible Travel Hub on cairnsgreatbarrierreef.com
  • Launching the TNQ First Nations Tourism Plan
  • Completing Phase 1 of the Queensland Tourism Climate Action Plan and being one of two regions selected to define their destination pathway to Net Zero by 2050
  • Launching the Pathways to Sustainable Tourism Industry Toolkit

 Read the TTNQ 2022-23 Annual Report: https://tourism.tropicalnorthqueensland.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2023/09/TTNQ-2022-23-Annual-Report_FINAL.pdf

From Left: Outgoing Chair Ken Chapman, CEO Mark Olsen, incoming Chair John O’Sullivan.

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