Executive profiles

Executive profiles

Chief executive officer: Thulani Nzima

Thulani Nzima, the chief executive officer at South African Tourism, has a wealth of experience in the travel and tourism industry.

Mr Thulani Nzima took up his position as CEO in January 2012. He is responsible for all South African Tourism's operations in South Africa and abroad.

Thulani's illustrious career began in the banking industry in 1987. In 1991, he joined South African Airways (SAA), where he spent 14 years honing his skills in all aspects of the local and international travel and tourism sector. He worked his way up through the national airline, holding numerous key positions along the way. He worked in the African, Asian, Australian and Benelux markets, as well as locally, culminating in his position as senior executive manager and the driving force behind the strategic realignment of SAA’s Voyager programme.

In 2005, Thulani joined the South African Travel Centre (SATC) as CEO, where he succeeded in at re-energising the business model, creating new revenue streams.

Chief financial officer: Thomas Bouwer

Thomas (Tom) Bouwer is South African Tourism’s chief financial officer.

Mr Tom Bouwer, who has more than 40 years' experience in public financial management and has worked for a number of national government departments, joined South African Tourism in 2013. His key focus includes delivering effective and efficient financial management in South African Tourism's key markets.

An expert in governance issues such as policy formulation, Tom joined us from the South African National Biodiversity Institute, where he was the chief financial officer (CFO). Before that, he worked at the Department of Water Affairs, was an associate director with Saha International, CFO at the national Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (now the national Department of Tourism) and director of financial services at the Department of Housing.

While at the Department of Tourism, Tom received the Southern African Institute of Government Auditors (SAIGA) Award for Best National Department – Financial Statements, as well as the SAIGA Award for the Most Consistent Financial Statements.

Chief operating officer: Sthembiso Dlamini

Sthembiso Dlamini is the chief operating officer for South African Tourism.

Ms Sthembiso Dlamini joined our team in 2014. It is her job to lead business planning and budgeting processes, ensure optimal management of resources and adherence to good corporate governance through prudent financial management. She also ensures compliance with the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and all other legislation affecting South African Tourism.

Before joining us, Sthembiso was employed as a senior manager in the office of the CEO at the National Development Agency (NDA), a role she had occupied since August 2012, and had worked for the South African Revenue Service as acting director of corporate affairs from 2007 to 2012.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Criminology and a Postgraduate Diploma in Project and Programme Management.

Chief marketing officer: Margie Whitehouse

Margie Whitehouse is South African Tourism’s chief marketing officer.

Ms Margie Whitehouse, who joined us as chief marketing officer in 2015, has more than 25 years’ experience in nurturing and growing African brands, in both the public and private sectors.

Her marketing journey began when she joined the Unilever management graduate programme in 1988 and since then her experiences in various marketing roles have shaped her into a seasoned brand innovator, developer and entrepreneur.

An entrepreneur at heart, she has created and started brand consultancies to assist companies, both start-ups and established, to innovate and build strong brand identities. She built Freedthinkers in 1999, where she worked as CEO until 2005, assisting brands such as the Department of Trade and Industry, FirstRand, Nando’s, Investec, MTN and Moyo's.

Margie has served on the SAA Board, presently sits on the Board of HospiceWits in order to give back to society, and also chairs the WPGA (the Women’s Professional Golf Association) through her passion for golf. Her focus has been on inspiring girls to play and excel at golf, and on corporate governance, which she’s also deeply interested in. All her involvement in golf is on a pro bono basis.

Margie holds a Degree in Bachelor of Business Science (Honours Marketing) from the University of Cape Town.