President's Update - April '24

Ash Munn

President - Skål International Australia

Ash Munn

Partnerships & Technology

Dear Skålleagues,

It is an absolute honour to be elected your 21st President of Skål International Australia. I would like to thank all our members for your support, your confidence and your trust in electing me as your leader. I am very much looking forward to working with our clubs to create a shared vision of growth and success, and to promote and encourage a sustainable future for Skål International Australia.

I would like to extend a huge thank you to Skål International Perth for hosting a fantastic AGM and National Assembly last month. The National Assembly was engaging, interactive and very insightful and showcased the very essence of networking and 'doing business amongst friends'. I also extend a huge congratulations to Perth on their 60th Anniversary!

We were incredibly privileged to welcome many international Skålleagues to our National Assembly including five international Directors, and we thank them all immensely for making the journey to Australia. We are very grateful to have welcomed colleagues and friends from afar to be part of our national event.

It gives me great pleasure to formally introduce and welcome our new Executive Board for 2024.

President - Ash Munn (Partnerships & Technology)
Vice President - Taylor Spinks (Membership Development & Young Skål)
Vice President - Tara Strickland (Industry Engagement & Events)
Director - Melinda Brown (Communications, P.R & Media)
Secretary - Sandy Hammond (Governance, Administration & Protocol)
Treasurer - Ernst Krolke (Financial Management & Planning)
Senior Auditor - Richard Condon
Auditor - Michele Hodgson

I congratulate all those elected and look forward to a productive year ahead working with you all.

The Executive Board recently met via Zoom for our first board meeting with some fantastic new and innovative projects already planned for 2024. Our projects this year will be largely focused on membership development, strengthening our industry credibility and relevance, increased membership benefits through partnerships, return on membership investment, further newsletter and social media enhancements, and the establishment of a Young Skål and Sustainability subcommittee.

Following on from our National Assembly discussions regarding the lengthy delays to the Skål International websites, initial planning is underway for Australia to implement our own websites should the April 30 deadline pass without definitive news.

This month is a very important month on the Skål calendar as we celebrate 90 years of Skål on April 28. This is a day to celebrate Skålleagues worldwide and to reflect and appreciate the work of so many industry colleagues who have helped shape the organisation into what it is today.

Skål is a networking organisation that enhances our visibility within our travel and tourism industry. By actively participating in Skål affairs, sharing our expertise and engaging with others, we establish ourselves as reputable and trusted travel and tourism professionals. Skål gives us the platform to build professional connections, gives us access to a global network and helps create business opportunities in a social atmosphere.

It is vital to the success of our organisation, that we continue promoting the values and benefits of Skål, encouraging unity and a shared purpose among our members to maximise our opportunities for continued growth and success!

Next month, Skål International New Zealand will hold their AGM and National Congress 17 - 19 May in the stunning Otago Region in beautiful Queenstown. Despite my many trips to New Zealand over the years, this will be my first visit to Queenstown, I am beyond excited! This is an ideal opportunity for Australian Skålleagues to jump on a direct flight from the east coast for an unforgettable kiwi autumn experience and of course to connect with our kiwi family. It isn't too late to register so hopefully I can look forward to seeing a few Australian Skålleagues on the beautiful shores of Lake Wakatipu... no bungee jumping!

Following the New Zealand Congress, I will travel direct to the Kingdom of Bahrain on the Persian Gulf to attend the Skål Asia Area Congress to be held 23 - 26 May. I am looking forward to the opportunity of reconnecting with our Asian Skålleagues to strengthen our relationships and promote business opportunities between our regions.

Yours in Skål,

Ash Munn
President - Skål International Australia
Partnerships & Technology