Unique Vacations Inc., the marketing arm of Sandals Resorts International, including Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts, has realigned its leadership team with top industry talent forming an executive roster armed to push forward while continuing to position the company as a leader of luxury travel throughout the Caribbean.
The team represents "the very best minds in the leisure travel industry" who are uniquely prepared to meet the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead of a post pandemic marketplace, the company says.
“Experienced leadership is always important, but during a moment of transition as we are in now, it’s critical to meet the opportunity ahead. As leisure travel returns, we’re seeing a rising demand for knowledgeable and customer-centric expertise to guide decisions,” said Jeff Clarke, Chief Executive Officer of Unique Vacations, Inc., appointed in April 2020. “This team of seasoned pros is focused on the guest and well positioned for what I know are the travel industry’s greatest days ahead."
Effective immediately, are the following changes amongst the executive leadership team:
GARY SADLER, OD.
Executive Vice President of Sales & Industry Relations
Gary Sadler, OD, who pioneered the organization’s Canadian market, rising through the ranks to his most recent position of Senior Vice-President of Sales, will now serve as Executive Vice President of Sales & Industry Relations.
Sadler is heralded by travel advisors worldwide and credited with many innovative and award-winning programs, including the concept behind the Chairman’s Royal Club, which gathers top travel advisors around the world. In his expanded role, he is committed to the continued fostering of relationships with the broader industry including travel networks, airline partners, tour operators, travel associations, tourist boards and various government entities.
Vice-President of Sales and Marketing, Canada
Maureen Barnes-Smith, Director of Sales & Marketing in Canada has been promoted to Vice-President Sales and Marketing, Canada. A company veteran of 27 years, Barnes-Smith has successfully led the company’s growth and expansion across Canada, making it the largest operation of any Caribbean resort chain in the country.
A Director of Philanthropy for the not-for-profit Sandals Foundation in Canada, Barnes-Smith is also active in the Jamaican Diaspora community.
Chief Communications & Strategy Officer
Communications pro Maggie Rivera has been named Chief Communications and Strategy Officer. Rivera joined the company in 1997 and throughout her career has passionately stewarded the brands under her care, managing their reputation internally and externally and bolstering strategic initiatives for teams to perform at their best.
A new addition to the C-suite, Rivera is responsible for strategic insights, communications including earned media and influencer relations, partner agency management, corporate communications and public affairs, celebrity engagement, corporate social responsibility and social impact initiatives.
Senior Vice-President of Brand Development
Branding expert Tony Cortizas returns to the organization after a 15-year hiatus, as SVP of Brand Development. During his first tenure at UVI, Cortizas was part of the team that brought to life some of Sandals Resorts’ expanded weddings offerings. He also helped to make the family-friendly Beaches Resorts brand a must-do family vacation experience.
A creative thinker and strong brand marketer who takes defining service standards to heart, Cortizas will be instrumental in ensuring marketing programs are relevant and resonate with consumers.
Senior Vice-President of Group Development
Tonya Hawryluk, currently serving as Vice President, becomes Senior Vice President of Group Development, recognizing her more than 25 years’ experience in customer service, operations and sales.
Her professionalism and commitment to customer satisfaction has been instrumental in growing the demand for the MICE market. Hawryluk will be responsible for engineering the return of group incentive travel.
Senior Vice-President of Events, Experiences & Promotions
Debbie-Ann White, Unique Vacations Inc. SVP of Public Relations & Promotions, becomes SVP of Events, Experiences & Promotions, reflecting the organization’s goal to strengthen and develop consumer insights and external business relationships between the brands, key partners and allies.
Vice-President of Operations & Revenue Strategy
Hospitality revenue management expert William Tullmann, CRME, C.Dir, has been promoted from Director to Vice President of Operations & Revenue Strategy, where he will expand initiatives that grow global distribution, optimize revenue, and improve commercial operations.
Tullmann holds a certificate in Advanced Hospitality Revenue Management from Cornell University and is currently attending the prestigious MBA program at Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL), Switzerland. A champion for the greater hospitality business, Tullmann continues to contribute to the industry-leading innovation the brand is known for.
Vice-President of Trade Sales, US
Current Senior National Director of Sales, Garth Laird has been promoted to Vice President of Trade Sales, US. Laird joined UVI as a Business Development Manager and arose through the ranks as Director of Sales Industry Programs, where his talent for sales flourished and where he was repeatedly recognized, including winning the coveted Chairman’s Award for Outstanding Sales.
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