The Institute of Travel and Tourism (ITT) has defended its structure despite admitting its board categories are “not particularly relevant”.
Speaking as the ITT elects its new board, chairman and chief executive Steven Freudmann said the categories had been in place for 20 years and remained unchanged despite a review two years ago.
The latest elections will see Advantage Travel Centres leisure director Julia Lo Bue-Said appointed unopposed to the board in the domestic category, not the
Freudmann himself is standing unopposed in this category despite not having worked as a travel agent since 2008 when he sold his agency to his brother.
In the hospitality category, TTG editor Daniel Pearce, a journalist, is standing against Maltese hotelier Tony Coleiro. Freudmann said the board had considered ditching the categories but decided it was “not worth the time and effort”.
He added: “We don’t have hard and fast rules on it; as a director, you represent the entire membership not your constituent sector as such. The categories are not particularly relevant.”
However, Travel Weekly was told concerns remain about aspects of the way ITT is run, including board elections. One source said: “You can’t say you have these people representing these categories, then say they are meaningless and do nothing to change them.”
In the rules, it states the categories “must be shown by the board members to be the main discipline of their business.”
But Freudmann said it was at the board’s discretion as to whether members could represent categories they do not work in.
Five positions are being contested, with the results due on June 17.
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