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JJOHANNESBURG – A dynamic team to deal with a dynamic travel environment. That is the profile of the Association of Southern African Travel Agents’ newly elected board, steering the organisation as it reinforces the important role of travel agents as consummate professionals navigating the increasingly complicated world of travel.

Vanya Lessing, Sure Travel CEO and formerly CEO of ASATA, takes the helm as the organisation’s president over the coming year with the focus of ensuring the travel industry under the highly respected national and global ASATA brand remains “professional and relevant to the travelling public”. 

ASATA CEO Otto de Vries says he is delighted with Lessing’s appointment as ASATA President. “Her leadership of one of the most influential travel consortiums in South Africa combined with her unwavering commitment to ASATA not only now but in her past roles as Vice President and CEO will serve the association and the new board well. I look forward to her guidance and support as our association continues to focus on its mission to champion ASATA members as the consumer channel of choice.” 

Travel With Flair MD and Founder, Johanna Mukoki, joins Lessing as Vice President, with James Sedgwick of Sure Travel, Fish Hoek as Treasurer.

Additional board members include:

• Bronwyn Phillips, HRG Rennies Travel
• Claude Vankeirsbilck, Tourvest Travel Service
• Johann Strydrom, World Leisure Holidays
• Lance Smith, Avis Rent A Car

The ASATA board’s appointment comes as the industry stands resolute against several challenges experienced this year, such as the Ebola outbreak and new immigration regulations.

“Despite these and other challenges, the industry has adapted to the changes and influenced those where we can.”

“ASATA is growing in stature and credibility. Our role is expanding but we remain steadfast and focused in our mission to support our members in meeting the consumer’s needs of value and security through developing and maintaining the highest level of expertise and professionalism,” concludes de Vries.

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