• Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC)
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Celebrating events and a new chapter

27 /09/ 2016 Comments are Closed

A message from outgoing Chief Executive, Dianne Smith

Happy World Tourism Day. In honour of this celebration, the September edition of the VTIC eNews has come a little earlier this month, and we hope that this year’s theme, Tourism for All – promoting universal accessibility resonates with you, as it does with VTIC.

Spring is an eventful time, and a time of change.

We received positive feedback from industry surrounding our recent MPs4Tourism breakfast event, where VTIC hosted fourteen State Government MPs and more than one hundred delegates. We were thrilled to see our members making connections, and to hear the buzz of productive and lively conversations taking place around the room.

The breakfast gave us an opportunity to acknowledge the overall sector growth, as well as reinforce and remind our government colleagues that we have  unfinished business, and areas needing improvement for the visitor economy. If we are to fully realise our potential, policy challenges must be addressed, and this can only be done with industry and State Government working in partnership.

Earlier this month, we were honoured to host the Tourism Legends Luncheon with William Angliss Institute. This event welcomes past Victorian Tourism Award winners of the Outstanding Contribution by an Individual (OCBI) category, and VTIC Life Members who have demonstrated a high degree of commitment to shaping the industry. Specifically, it was wonderful to have the company of the 1991 OCBI recipient, Geoff McGeary, founder of APT, and true industry legend.

VTIC is proud to deliver the upcoming RACV Victorian Tourism Awards on November 24, as an industry awards program run by industry for industry. Please book your seats now, as tickets are selling fast.

There has also, been a lot going on at VTIC HQ. As you may be aware, after five years as Chief Executive, I will be moving into a new role with the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry as Executive Director – Melbourne Chamber of Commerce.

It’s hard not to be sentimental at this time, as tourism and events have, and will always be my passion. I am intensely proud of Victorian tourism, and have relished working closely with operators going back to 1994, when I was at Melbourne Zoo, and on the Board of the Victorian Tourism Operators Association (a predecessor of VTIC). It has also been a privilege to work with the high-calibre VTIC board, and to represent the operators who are so enthusiastic about, and collegiate within our sector.

In 2012, I was fortunate to be on the Premier’s mission to China. During this trip, I travelled with several dynamic people, including John Forman of Red Rock Leisure, a passionate advocate for Chinese New Year, and Melbourne Convention Bureau’s Karen Bolinger, who is unrelenting in her pursuit of business events for Melbourne. And Jeremy Johnson invited me to the opening of Sovereign Hill’s dedicated sales office in Shanghai; an Australian first. This was just one trip of many over the years in which Victorian tourism provided me with so many reasons to feel proud of my home-state.

I honour the vision of the VTIC founders, and thank you for creating and guiding such an important organisation, which assists, and is able to speak independently on behalf of, tourism and event operators across the state.

Finally, I want to salute my team. I’m so proud of the growth of VTIC, which is due to the nature of our creative and effective team members, both present and past. I think they’re wonderful and thank them sincerely for their dedication and support.

Please continue the support for the ‘one voice’ you have in VTIC.

Dianne Smith

About the Author

Dianne Smith

Dianne Smith has enjoyed being Chief Executive of Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) since January 2012. In this role, Dianne draws on her vast knowledge and experience gained from over 20 years in the industry which has included marketing, visitor services, policy and strategy roles in regional Victoria and Melbourne.



22aug(aug 22)9:00 am24(aug 24)1:30 pmFeatured2018 Victorian Visitor Information Services (VIS) Summit9:00 am - 1:30 pm (24) Capital Theatre

22aug5:30 pm8:00 pmVictorian Chamber Presents: Fast Forward Speed Networking5:30 pm - 8:00 pm

28aug9:00 am12:00 pmDestination Melbourne presents: Transformative Technology Workshop9:00 am - 12:00 pm Citadines on Bourke


05sep5:30 pm7:30 pmVTIC 2018 Mixer Series - September Tourism Networking EventConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers5:30 pm - 7:30 pm DoubleTree by Hilton Melbourne

11sep9:00 am5:00 pmDestination Melbourne presents: The Exchange9:00 am - 5:00 pm

11sep5:45 pm7:30 pmVictorian Chamber presents: Business After Dark5:45 pm - 7:30 pm Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Goldfields Café and Bar

12sep1:30 pm3:30 pmDestination Melbourne presents: Tapping into Tourism- September1:30 pm - 3:30 pm Hobsons Bay Civic Centre

21sep12:00 pm2:00 pmVTIC Premium Member Lunch with Helen SawczakConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers12:00 pm - 2:00 pm Angliss Restaurant

26sep11:30 am4:00 pmVictorian Chamber and Pitcher Partners presents: Grand Final Lunch11:30 am - 4:00 pm Olympic Room, MCG


16oct6:30 pm8:00 pmYoung Tourism Network presents: Emotional Intelligence with Mel Neil6:30 pm - 8:00 pm Victoria University

22oct12:00 pm2:00 pmVTIC Premium Member Lunch with Lyell StrambiConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers12:00 pm - 2:00 pm Angliss Restaurant


22nov6:00 pm11:00 pm2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards – Gala CeremonySave the Date6:00 pm - 11:00 pm Palladium at Crown Dress Code: Black Tie

28nov4:30 pm6:00 pm2018 VTIC Annual General MeetingConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers4:30 pm - 6:00 pm VTIC Offices, Level 3