InteleTravel, the world’s oldest and largest host travel agency, today announced multiple senior-level promotions and new hires across numerous departments at the company, effective immediately.
The deepening of management follows InteleTravel’s recent acquisition of Hickory Global Partners. This brought together industry leaders in leisure and corporate travel categories to create a modern consortia by providing a single source of advantages and support for all travelers and the professionals who serve them.
InteleTravel is also coming off a record-breaking year with over $529 million in sales in 2022. The all-time high represented an increase of 113% over pre-pandemic sales in 2019 and 92% compared to total sales in 2021, both of which were previous records for the host travel agency originally established in 1991. This year, InteleTravel is selling 85% more year-over-year, and aims to reach $1 billion in sales.
“Our record setting performance and growth does not happen by magic,” says James Ferrara, president of InteleTravel. “It takes incredibly talented travel sellers supported by a talented and dedicated team of professionals and executives working round the clock, rethinking everything, managing with data and skill in the most strategic way. Our success demands constant advancement and augmentation of that team. We are truly fortunate to make these announcements.”
InteleTravel’s leadership promotions and new appointments include:
Tara Minson has been promoted to executive vice president of InteleTravel. She joined InteleTravel in 2008 and most recently served as its senior vice president of marketing and communications. Over the years, Minson has helped the company earn multiple Travel Weekly Magellan Awards while guiding InteleTravel’s overall strategic marketing initiatives and producing large-scale events for its network of advisors. In her new role, she aims to continue creating and providing industry-leading tools and resources to help advisors succeed in their own business. Minson is also a board member of Women Leading in Travel and Hospitality, Delta Vacations and American Airlines Vacations. She is also a member of Apple Leisure Group Vacations’ advisory board.
Dave Spinelli has been promoted to senior vice president of industry relations. Spinelli joined InteleTravel in 2017, bringing over 30 years of industry experience as an accomplished leader in leisure travel sales, partner relations, and agency distribution. Since joining the host travel agency, he has spearheaded the company’s double-digit annual growth in preferred partner sales. Prior to joining InteleTravel, he served as vice president of industry relations at Vacation.com, which boasted more than 5,500 member locations throughout the United States and Canada as North America’s largest vacation selling network.
Dayna Jordan has been promoted to vice president of operations. Since joining InteleTravel as its director of operations in 2015, Jordan has led the company in evaluating and supporting managers and teams in reaching all departmental objectives while evaluating processes for improvement. In her new role, Jordan will oversee the development of the company’s business processes and solutions – including new AI initiatives – while enhancing current tools to support the success of InteleTravel’s advisors and managers across departments. Prior to InteleTravel, she held positions with Air Travel Price Index (ATPI), McCord Travel Management, and The Vacation Store.
Jessica Sitomer has been promoted to vice president of advisor education and success. Sitomer is responsible for the development and management of InteleTravel’s innovative training programs for advisors. Since joining the host travel agency in 2015, she has created innovative training solutions and resources that help InteleTravel’s independent travel advisors successfully launch and manage their own business. Sitomer, formerly as a director, has also hosted the company’s signature Dream Maker events and led the training at its annual conference, InteleTravel Quest, which is attended by thousands of agents and suppliers every year.
Tricia Handley-Hughes has been promoted to U.K. managing director of InteleTravel. Handley-Hughes joined InteleTravel in 2018 as U.K. director, bringing over 40 years of experience across travel and hospitality sectors. Since then, she has guided the company to becoming the largest homeworker agency in the U.K. with over 14,000 independent travel advisors, as well as 500 in the Republic of Ireland. In her new role, Handley-Hughes will oversee and manage all of InteleTravel’s U.K. and Ireland business operations, including expanding its network suppliers and agents, optimizing the host travel agency’s training programs, and advancing the brand’s strategic marketing communications initiatives.
Brian Holmberg has joined InteleTravel as director of industry relations. With over 30 years of experience at some of the industry’s top brands, Holmberg previously served as director of sales for Norwegian Cruise Line. Prior to that, he held various leadership positions in sales, marketing, and strategic partnership roles at several companies, including Carnival Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, and Signature Travel Network. As InteleTravel’s new director of industry relations, Holmberg will be responsible for managing a portfolio of nearly 40 preferred supplier relationships across various sectors, including cruise, hotel, and resort partners.
Courtney Tyler has been named director of events at InteleTravel. Tyler has been in corporate event planning for over 15 years, where her experience includes planning for groups both nationally and internationally, ranging in size from 200 to over 18,000 attendees. As the newly appointed director of events, Tyler will be responsible for sourcing, planning, and executing an annual calendar of over 30 effective and memorable events for the host travel agency and its growing network of independent advisors.
Sandra Jamali has been promoted to director of industry relations. Jamali joined InteleTravel in 2019, bringing over 15 years of experience working in advertising agencies and in-house marketing departments, including traditional and digital marketing for global, general market, and Hispanic agencies across the country. She is a seasoned industry relations manager with expertise in account management, sales, and business development. Along with her new role as director of industry relations at InteleTravel, Jamali is dedicated to creating long-lasting relationships with wellness and sustainability leaders in the travel industry.
Traci Daniele has joined InteleTravel as comptroller. Prior to joining InteleTravel, Daniele spent nearly 20 years as the controller for Ensemble Travel Group where she managed budgets, forecasting, commissions to agents, financial accounting, and annual audits for three countries and over $1 billion in sales. As the newly appointed comptroller, Daniele will be responsible for directing the company’s commissions department in optimizing its workflow and reporting, helping develop plans to ensure InteleTravel’s continued financial growth, and the accurate, efficient on-time payment of millions of dollars to the company’s travel advisor business owners.
By Mian Saeed Ahmed Khan