"As the first female President and CEO of WTTC, it is an honour to champion this important initiative. The pledge made today with the launch of the first Women’s Initiative in Travel & Tourism by a combination of the private, public and academic sectors to work towards women’s equality, marks a significant step forward. Globally, women have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic which has exacerbated the pay gap, the opportunity gap and the shocking lack of senior positions and leadership roles across the Travel & Tourism sector. This needs to be changed, WTTC research shows women play a vital role and represented 54% of Travel & Tourism’s employment worldwide. Yet while more than half the sector is accounted for by women, all too few occupy any senior or strategic roles. Therefore, I’m delighted to share a platform today with one of the world’s greatest ever tennis players, Martina Navratilova, to help launch WTTC’s ground-breaking Women’s Initiative."
Previous President & CEO, WTTC
"Women have always had to outperform men, and whilst things are changing for the better, it is still a fight and a constant battle. Change happens much quicker when it comes from the top. Companies would be more profitable if more women were in positions of power and boardrooms were less homogenous and reflected the diversity of their customers. This is why I am delighted to be here with WTTC on the day it launches its Women’s Initiative. As an advocate for women’s rights, I know every act we take will help change the lives of women everywhere and make the world a fairer and better place."
World Famous Tennis Player, Winner of 59 Grand Slam titles
"Women have made significant contributions in travel and tourism for generations, and our industry has the opportunity and obligation to lead the way in creating a more inclusive, equitable workforce. I’m surrounded by talented and remarkable women at home and at work, so I’m thrilled to support WTTC’s Women Empowerment Initiative and the advancement of women leaders in the travel industry."
President and CEO, Hilton
"When we choose to empower the women in the Travel & Tourism sector, we choose to give them a seat at the table. That seat is a platform for not just the individual, but for the collective voices, insights, experiences, and knowledge we bring to the world as women in this industry."
President of Strategic Partnerships, American Express
"In Quintana Roo, we work together so that tourism benefits everyone, including the empowerment of women. In the tourism sector of the Mexican Caribbean, there are greater opportunities for women's empowerment. Indeed, two of our most important programs; Guest Assist and Guest Locator, are led by women, Directors of Tourist Care and Information Technologies."
Carlos Joaquín González
Governor, Quintana Roo
"As a female business owner, with an entirely female leadership team, I am completely behind this initiative and feel that in a world full of diversity it is important to not only allow equal opportunity, but to create it, and grow it. Only by offering equal opportunity can we truly understand and acknowledge our full capabilities and to appreciate those of our pairs."
CEO & Sole Founder, IC Bellagio
"70% of travel consumers are women. Women drive 70-80% of all consumer purchasing decisions. If we believe innovation is critical to winning the future, and we commit to the principles of design thinking that require us to really get to know—to understand—our customers, then we obviously need more women at the table."
Vice President of Innovation, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport
"Diversity and inclusion, particularly at a leadership level, are fundamental to developing a stronger and more sustainable travel and tourism industry. We, as a sector, have already taken strides to become more representative but we still have a long way to go. The WTTC, through this initiative, are driving further positive changes that allows women to play a decisive and equal role in the future of our industry."
Cintia Scafutto de Menezes
Vice President of Service Operations Americas, SITA
"COVID has reminded us how women worldwide have proven themselves to be remarkable leaders in a crisis. Whether leading their country, company, team, or family, the data show that women effectively balance decisiveness with collaboration. WTTC’s research in the area is vitally important to furthering this dialogue and, ultimately, bringing more equity and impact to leadership."
"Every child is born with the fundamental human right to freedom, freedom to make their own life choices. And this begins with the equal right to education. If we are not educated, how can we possibly know what opportunities are open to us and, in turn, be equipped with the confidence and voice to break barriers that may lie in our way?
The gender gap represents one of the most significant barriers to effective and sustainable development. The COVID-19 pandemic has a devastating effect on the limited gains made over the past decades; it has deepened pre-existing inequalities, exposed vulnerabilities in our social, political, and economic systems.
This important initiative led by the WTTC shines the light on the issues facing Women's Empowerment effecting policy changes within our industry to accelerate positive societal and cultural change. Every girl, every woman, can achieve the future she deserves. More than ever, the time to act is now."
Chief Culture Officer, Value Retail