Destination NSW appoints new chair, as John Warn heads to Accor

NSW Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney Stuart Ayres has announced the appointment of Christine McLoughlin as the new chair of the state’s destination marketing agency.

McLoughlin (pictured above) is one of Australia’s most highly-regarded company directors and an accomplished business leader, having held various domestic and international executive positions in a range of industries spanning the corporate, government and not-for-profit spheres.

She is currently chair of Suncorp Group, chancellor of the University of Wollongong, and a director for Venues NSW, Cochlear Limited and the McGrath Foundation. McLoughlin is also the co-founder and chair of the Minerva Network

Minister Ayres said McLoughlin’s extensive professional and governance experience made her the ideal candidate to lead the recovery and growth of the NSW visitor economy.

“NSW is well-positioned to not only recover from the combined impacts of drought, bushfires and COVID-19 in the short term, but also for our visitor economy to thrive over the next 10 years,” he said.

“Strong leadership will be needed to implement our blueprint, the Visitor Economy Strategy 2030, and align the efforts of government and industry to achieve our vision for NSW to be the premier visitor economy of the Asia Pacific.

“Christine has proven strategic skills and expertise in governance, complex stakeholder engagement and innovation, which will be invaluable to support Destination NSW during this first phase of recovery and beyond.

“Christine has extensive board experience and has demonstrated leadership through her many professional and personal activities spanning financial services, telecommunications, resources, health insurance, sports and entertainment and infrastructure.”

Minister Ayres also thanked John Warn, who has decided to step down from the board of Destination NSW after two-and-a-half years as chair to take up the role of chief operating officer for apartments and leases at Accor.

John Warn

“The strength of John’s leadership has been especially evident over the past 12 months.” He said.

“He has steered the organisation through the most challenging of times – unquestionably the most turbulent period of Destination NSW’s history – to ensure that it maintained a laser focus on providing support to stakeholders and delivering programs that drove a recovery agenda.

“On behalf of the NSW government, I would like to thank him for his tireless commitment to growing the visitor economy, to the development of the Visitor Economy Strategy and his stewardship of Destination NSW.”

The state’s destination marketing agency has also launched a new media centre to support “every professional publishing and content creation need, providing access to the latest travel and tourism news and the largest collection of content assets of any tourism body in the world”.

Media and content creators can discover more than 30,000 images, videos, B-roll, press releases and editorial-ready content about Sydney and New South Wales via the new Destination NSW media centre.