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New Chair to lead Tourism Australia
New Chair to lead Tourism Australia

Mr Rick Allert AM, currently Chair of Coles Group Limited, will become the new Chair of Tourism Australia, replacing Mr Tim Fischer AC. Tourism Minister Fran Bailey said with his strong  business experience, Rick Allert was an ideal choice to take Tourism Australia forward.

"Rick Allert will bring a strong commercial focus to the Board of Tourism Australia, with more than 40 years of business experience, including Chairing one of Australia`s largest companies," Fran Bailey, Minister for Small Business and Tourism, said.

"Rick Allert has a long-standing association with the tourism and hospitality industry as Chair of the Voyages Hotels and Resorts, the National Wine Centre and Southcorp. International tourists spent an extra $1.8 billion in Australia in 2006. The challenge is to build on this excellent foundation and I have every confidence that Rick Allert has the skills to take Tourism Australia to the next level."

Rick Allert`s appointment will commence once he has finalised his existing commitments. His term will expire on 30 June 2010. In the interim, Tourism Australia`s Deputy Chair, Mr Andrew Burnes, will be acting Chair.

Fran Bailey also announced the Board appointment of Grant Hunt, former CEO of Voyages Hotels and former General Manager of Marina Mirage Gold Coast. Grant Hunt, a Gold Coast resident, has excellent experience in eco-tourism and Indigenous Tourism.

"With his extensive business and tourism experience, Grant Hunt will make an important contribution to the Board," Fran Bailey said.

Fran Bailey thanked Tim Fischer for his term as Chair, describing him as "almost a tourism icon himself" and bringing "his own individual brand of enthusiasm in his mission to tirelessly promote Australia."

Fran Bailey also thanked outgoing director Wayne Kirkpatrick for his excellent contribution to the Board.

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