In a unanimous decision by the NTIG committee, Michael Stamboulidis, General Manager of QT Newcastle has been elected as successor to outgoing chair Kent Warren who successfully led the committee for over four years. Changing work commitments led to Kent’s decision to step down as chair, but he will continue to serve as a member of the NTIG committee.
In his capacity as General Manager of QT Newcastle, Michael is a key stakeholder in the local visitor economy, giving him a powerful voice when advocating on the industry’s behalf. He also brings a wealth of experience from positions at Merivale in Sydney, Bigfoot Lodge in Niseko/Japan and QT in Melbourne.
Kent said, “It’s been a privilege to help provide a voice for Newcastle’s tourism and hospitality sector. We’ve been through tough times and the current economic climate continues to create challenges for the industry.
“But highlights like the resounding success of the Elton John concerts and being named NSW’ Top Tourism Town 2023 are testament to the sector’s resilience, to the quality and diversity of our offerings. I’m very much looking forward to continuing to serve on the NTIG committee and wish Michael all the very best for his new role as chair.”
Michael commented, “Having moved to Newcastle just two years ago, I still feel a bit like a newcomer to this fantastic city and continue to be amazed by everything it has to offer. The stunning beauty of our surrounds, the passion and ever-present push for innovation in our local hospitality and tourism businesses make Newcastle a must-visit destination for domestic and international visitors alike. We were proud to acknowledge the depth and breadth of local talent in our recent, inaugural Hospitality & Tourism Awards.
“While there’s much to celebrate in this industry, we also need to create a supportive environment for the sector to continue to grow and flourish. With almost 5,000 jobs and an economic output of close to a billion dollars we are a crucial part of the local economy. I am honoured to take over as chair from Kent who is leaving an impressive legacy and big shoes to fill.”
On behalf all NTIG members, the committee would like to thank Kent Warren for his invaluable contribution and wish Michael Stamboulidis all the best in his new role.