At this year’s AITO Agents overseas conference in Prague (June 12 – 15, 2014), Gemma Antrobus (Haslemere Travel) has been announced as AITO Agents’ first female chairperson, taking over the chair from Oliver Broad (RB Collection).
Gemma Antrobus will become chair as Oliver Broad stands down at the end of the Prague conference. Ted Wake of Kirker Holidays continues to support as Deputy Chairman.
Gemma Antrobus says: “It’s an honour and a pleasure to be taking over from Oliver as AITO Specialist Travel Agents’ Chairperson. Some fantastic foundations have been laid over the past four years under Oliver’s leadership and I look forward to building upon those for the benefit of our agent members. It is a unique group of agents that celebrates the close partnership between AITO’s expert tour operators and independent, specialist travel agents.
“Following our long-term strategic review, a number of new projects will follow. The AITO Agents’ Panel sees value in promoting the AITO brand more visibly. It is important that consumers understand and appreciate the values of booking with an AITO Agent, and brand awareness is a huge part of this.
“We’re all excited about the next stage of development for AITO Specialist Travel Agents. The panel and I (four agents and four AITO operators) will ensure that the organisation remains the leading group of independent agents and the very first source of expert advice for UK’s most discerning travellers.”
Oliver Broad says: “I have thoroughly enjoyed the last six years being involved with the AITO Agents’ panel, four of which were as AITO Agents’ Chairman.
“I am delighted that Gemma is taking on the role. She has a wealth of knowledge, is extremely enthusiastic and is very well-connected in the industry. I have no doubt that she will lead the group well, as it continues to modernise and develop further.
“To me, AITO Agents is still one of the most unique ‘families’ of companies. I look forward to being a supportive member of the organisation’s future projects and being as active as I possibly can over the next few years.”
About Gemma Antrobus
Gemma grew up in a travel industry family, studied international hospitality management at the University of Brighton and then spent the next seven years in renowned international companies in the travel, hotel, events and restaurant sectors.
In 2008, Gemma became Managing Director of Haselmere Travel, which consists of a hugely successful retail shop in Haslemere and a division of nine elite homeworking consultants based across the country. Gemma has served on the AITO Agents’ Panel for five years, working on the sub committees for PR & Marketing, Training & Events and Conferences.