KINGSTON, Jamaica: Dr. Wykeham McNeill, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, has named a new 10-member Board of Directors of the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB).
According to Dr. McNeill, the new Board, under the chairmanship of Dennis Morrison, “possesses the right skill-set to steer this entity into the future. I think he did a good job before and I repose great confidence in him to lead this organization once again.
“I hope that, as we seek to move forward as a board, we can ensure continued positive effects for Jamaica such as increases in our arrival figures and tourism earnings, as well as the diversification of our tourism product.
“I think the Board has a good blend of members with valuable experience led, of course, by Mr. Morrison and the Director of Tourism and former chairman, Mr. John Lynch. Likewise, we will also benefit from the experience of former president of the Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association, Mr. Wayne Cummings and the current president, Mrs. Evelyn Smith, to name a few. In addition to those persons, we have an excellent mix of young, vibrant members such as Vice President of Jamaica Tours Limited, Mr. Noel Sloley Jr. and Managing Director at Chukka Caribbean Adventures, Mr. Marc Melville.”
The other members of the Board are former Director of Tourism, Paul Pennicook, General Manager of Rondell Village Limited, Carolyn Wright, Vice President of Corporate Marketing and Environmental Affairs at Superclubs, Zein Issa-Nakash and hotelier, Kevin Hendrickson.
McNeill said that “of this group only Mr. Lynch, Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Issa-Nakash and Mr. Pennicook served on the outgoing Board while all the other members are new to the team, though some have served on the Board in previous years. I know they will bring fresh ideas and we look forward to their contribution.
“I think that the Board possesses the right combination of skills to move this organization forward and to help steer our tourism sector into a new frontier. The ministry has changed with the addition of entertainment, so moving forward the Board will have to incorporate this aspect more in our marketing efforts given the strong synergies between entertainment and tourism.
There has to be that coming together to ensure that both sides of the ministry are successful.”
The minister added that “there are a few key issues that we must move to address speedily as we are facing a few challenges such as the impact that warm weather in some of our markets is having on bookings. The issue of marketing remains high on the agenda as we continue our drive to bolster our position in traditional markets while tapping into emerging markets.
“Addressing the organizational structure of JTB is also an issue this board will have to examine. Though we have been winning many awards, I believe organizations should be under constant review as we seek to improve efficiencies and enhance our internal structures.”
McNeill thanked the members for “accepting this challenge” and said he looked forward to a “very fruitful and successful tenure”, adding that he hoped they would enjoy their time on the Board.”
Morrison, who served on the board from 2002 to 2007, said he felt very honoured to be asked to serve again.
“I am happy that Minister McNeill has placed such confidence in me. I welcome all the members of the Board and I look forward to working with them in a collaborative way as this is critical to ensuring that we are successful in discharging our duties.”