National Board

 
President - Julian Clark
Independent Investor / Owner – Boutique Hotels Sector

Julian is CEO of The Lancemore Group, a family owned and managed business and one of the largest boutique hotel operators in Australia. Julian has extensive experience in the accommodation industry and in his current role manages several iconic properties across Australia that regularly feature in Gold List’s and Good Food Guides.  Julian is also a board member for the Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) and a past board member of Victorian Tourism Industry Council (VTIC). 

 

 

 

 

Deputy President - Simon McGrath
AccorHotels -  Hotels Sector

Simon McGrath is the Chief Operating Officer for Accor Hotels Australia, responsible for over 250 hotels, 33,000 rooms and 12,000 employees in the Pacific region.

Simon has an extensive and highly respected career in the hotel sector, having worked in management positions domestically and overseas. He has worked in senior executive positions in Australia’s major city and tourist destinations, including Sydney, Gold Coast, Cairns, Hamilton Island and Ayers Rock Resort as well as internationally in Malaysia and Thailand.

In addition to his role as Chief Operating Officer for Accor Hotels, Simon holds the following Directorship Roles:

  • Director of AAPC Limited
  • Director of Accor Vacation Club (AVC)
  • Director for Reef Casino Trust

Simon also currently holds positions on the following Boards:

  • Deputy Chairman of Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF)
  • Independent Director of Genesis Care
  • Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School Industry Advisory Board

Simon has been recognised with numerous company and individual awards for excellence during his tenure at Accor Hotels. He has played a major advocate role in advancing Indigenous employment opportunities in the hospitality and tourism sector as well as championing innovative human resources development, marketing and customer relationship management.

 

 

Treasurer - Bruce Copland
Independent Director

Bruce Copland is a professional company director and hotelier who has worked in the hotel, hospitality, tourism and related consulting business since 1969.  He has many years’ experience in the international arena spanning the United Kingdom, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Mexico, and Australia. Bruce first migrated to Australia in 1986 to work for Western Resorts in WA as Group Development Manager. He has since held other senior group management positions with Quality Pacific, Country Comfort, Austotel and was CEO of Toga Hospitality until June 2007.  During his tenure at Toga both Vibe Hotels and Travelodge were coupled to the already successful Medina brand and the first Adina Hotels were opened in Europe.  Bruce continues to serve on the board of TFE Hotels.  Bruce is also a Director of McKenzie Scott & Associates, providing consulting services and back office systems to a wide variety of companies across Australia.  Bruce is the Chair of the Audit and Finance Committee overseeing all remuneration, accounting and compliance issues for the Association.

 

 

 

Rachel Argaman
Toga Far East Hotels - Hotels Sector

Rachel Argaman is the CEO of Toga Far East Hotels, one of the largest accommodation providers in Australia and currently operating over 70 hotels in Australia, New Zealand and Europe. TFE Hotels is a leading hotel operator under the brands: Travelodge Hotels, Vibe Hotels, Adina Apartment Hotels, TFE Hotels Collection, including the beautiful Kurrajong Hotel, and Medina Serviced Apartments.  Rachel joined Toga Far East Hotels in 1998 and became the Chief Executive Officer in 2007. Rachel’s business expertise is well recognised with multiple national and international Awards. Rachel holds an MBA in Service Industry Management and is passionate about business growth, strong teams, customer centric cultures and loves working in the travel industry.

 

 

 
Ian Sandilands
Best Western Australasia - Motel Sector
Ian Sandilands is the President and Chairman of the Best Western Australasia Board of Directors and Audit and Risk Committee. He and his family have almost 40 years’ experience and involvement in the hotel, motel, restaurant, catering and hospitality catering industries and operate the 4-star Best Western PLUS Gregory Terrace Brisbane and Best Western Henry Parkes Tenterfield. Ian has been a Best Western member for 13 years and a board member for 10 years. He is a Director and a member of the policy committee on the National Board of the Accommodation Association of Australia (AAA), a member of the Hospitality Training Association of Australia (HTA), the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Principal of Sandilands Hospitality Consulting.
 

 

 

Zed Sanjana 
Quest Apartment Hotels – Serviced Apartment Sector

Zed Sanjana is the CEO of Quest Apartment Hotels, the largest and fastest growing apartment hotel operator in Australasia with over 150 properties located across Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. Zed’s current role sees him working closely with the Quest Board of Directors to lead the development and execution of strategy across the company’s various business operations of Franchising, Growth, Development, Sales, Marketing and Property.   

Since joining Quest in 2011, Zed has overseen the opening of over 30 new properties across its portfolio in Australia and New Zealand as well as the sale of over $200m in property assets.  More recently, Zed was responsible for the formation of a strategic alliance between Quest and The Ascott Limited (a subsidiary of Singapore listed property group CapitaLand) which involved among other initiatives, the establishment of a $500m property fund targeting Quest growth projects in Australia over the next 5 years.  In addition Zed has overseen the $10m brand relaunch to Quest Apartment Hotels, repositioning the brand to meet the needs of a new generation of corporate travellers.

Zed joined Quest following a successful 10-year career in corporate finance with global advisory firm Ernst & Young, where he advised his clients on strategy, growth and M&A across a range of industries both in Australia and Europe.  Zed is a qualified Chartered Accountant and holds undergraduate degrees from the Australian National University in both Commerce and Law.

 

 

Colin Hughes
Independent Owner Operator – Motel Sector

 

Col is a Director on the Accommodation Association of Australia's Board. 

Col’s background is in Aviation having held senior Executive positions at Cathay Pacific Airways, Continental Airlines, Northwest Airlines and QANTAS, in Australia, Asia, Europe, Middle East and USA.

Col is also Chair of Business Events Sydney (BES), member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) and Director of Aviation Online (AOL). He is also past Chair & cofounder of the National Tourism Alliance (NTA), Director of the travel compensation  fund (TCF), Director of Best Western Hotels Australasia (BWA), Governor of the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM), Chair of Hong Kong based WinLu holdings, Chair of the Asia Pacific advisory Board of USA based Ensemble Travel Group (ETG).

 

Trent Fraser
Choice Hotels Asia-Pac

Trent Fraser began his hospitality career in 1988 with Southern Pacific Hotel Corporation (SPHC) and by 2002 he had held several senior management roles in a broad range of locations around Australia and South East Asia. Trent joined Choice Hotels in 2002 and was appointed Chief Executive Officer in April 2012.

Choice Hotels Asia-Pac is the largest Hotel Franchisor in this region with more than 270 properties across Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. Choice Hotels Asia-Pac is a 100% owned subsidiary of Choice Hotels International who are a publicly listed (NYSE:CHH) company in the United States with more than 6, 300 hotels and in excess of 500, 000 rooms in more than 40 countries around the world.

Trent led the successful launch and implementation of the Econo Lodge brand in 2009 and Ascend Hotel Collection in 2013 into Australia and New Zealand.

Coupled with record growth in the Australian and New Zealand markets in 2014, Trent announced Choice Hotels had signed a development agreement with Hangzhou-based Boli Hotel Management Co., Limited, an independent authorized licensee of Choice Hotels, which will be responsible for the development and operation of 30 hotels in China, across the Clarion and Quality brands. Construction of the first new Clarion build is underway in Hangzhou, with plans to move ahead and deliver the remaining 29 properties in other cities across the Greater China region by 2021.

Trent holds an Associate Diploma of Business from the Canberra Institute of Technology and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and lives in Melbourne with his wife, Michelle and their three daughters.

 

 

Barry Robinson
Wyndham Hotel Group, Wyndham Vacation Resorts
Barry Robinson has been the President and Managing Director of Wyndham Vacation Resorts Asia Pacific since September 2003. 

In 2009, Barry launched Wyndham Hotel Group in the South Pacific.  Barry has been the driving force behind many significant new property acquisitions, enhanced resort developments and has brought a renewed customer focus to the business.  Under his leadership, both Wyndham Vacation Resorts Asia Pacific and Wyndham Hotel Group in the South Pacific have expanded their portfolios throughout Australia, New Zealand, the South Pacific and South East Asia.

Appointed President and Managing Director of Wyndham Hotel Group South East Asia and Pacific Rim on January 1, 2015, Barry continues to lead the expansion of both Wyndham Vacation Resorts Asia Pacific and Wyndham Hotel Group across the region.  Barry oversees a property portfolio of more than 81 hotels and resorts under seven different brands.

With more than 30 years’ hospitality experience, Barry has a vast knowledge of the hotel and resort industry – from management, operations, development, branding and franchising.  He has held a number of senior leadership positions in the Asia Pacific region and has worked for some of the world’s largest hospitality companies including Swiss-Belhotel International, SwissĂ´tel Worldwide Partner Hotels and Choice Hotels International.

 

Tomas Johnsson
Mantra Group

Tomas joined Mantra Group in July 2007 as the Executive Director of Operations. In March 2016 Tomas moved into the role of Chief Operating Officer and is now responsible for the overall accountability for Operations, Sales, Marketing, Revenue, Distribution and Digital functions across the Group. Tomas has over 25 years’ experience in senior management roles in the tourism industry and is currently on the boards of the Accommodation Association of Australia and The Arts Centre Gold Coast.

Prior to joining Mantra Group, Tomas was the Senior Asset Manager for General Property Trust responsible for its leisure portfolio including Sheraton Four Points Darling Harbour, Ayers Rock Resort and Voyages Resorts. Tomas has also held senior management roles with Mirvac and Rydges Hotels.

Tomas successfully completed his Master of Business Administration (MBA) in 2016 and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.