For more than 17 years, I have been an active member of the travel and tourism industry, including my current role at Sojern as VP Audience Strategy & Development, and I can’t tell you what it means to work in such a dynamic field. I love the purpose that my job gives me, and I love knowing that through my work, I contribute to making people’s dreams come true. From planning that once in a lifetime vacation, to trips home to visit loved ones, it’s an honor to play a part in making those travels a reality.
My love for travel has been shared with everyone around me, and my husband and I have instilled the importance of travel in our family. My own children embrace the adventures of travel in the same way I do. Now aged 11 and 13, they have had the privilege to visit amazing parts of the world, including Botswana and most recently, Japan. This is all because of what I do for work.
It has not come without its sacrifices. I can’t count the number of birthdays, first days of school, parent-teacher conferences, anniversaries, and other personal milestones that I have missed out on because of work travel, like many working parents. And although I regret missing some of these important milestones, I do it because I love what I do. Through working at an agile and innovative company like Sojern, I have the flexibility to work from different locations, take the time I need with my family, and I’ve also been able to tag personal trips onto my business travels, so that I can catch up with those nearest and dearest to me.
About a year ago at an industry dinner, I found myself surrounded by 15 smart, accomplished, and driven women leaders from across travel and tourism. We quickly discovered that we shared similar challenges: balancing our personal and professional lives; being women leaders in what is still a somewhat male-dominated industry; regrets for not always being home to kiss our children good night; disappointment for not playing golf. We also shared our greatest connection, our shared love and appreciation for the travel industry.
My career has taken me to incredible places and I have had an opportunity to work with and learn from amazing people over the years. I’ve nurtured and developed relationships with the biggest brands in travel, and worked to build a team that I am incredibly proud of.
This is my salute to all the amazing women in travel who help to make other people’s travel dreams come true!