KITCHENER, ON, February 25, 2020 – Robert Harris, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Regional Tourism Organization 4 Inc. (RTO4), is pleased to announce the promotion of Andrea Gardi to Executive Director of the organization, one of 13 regional tourism offices established by the Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries in the province of Ontario.
“Andrea joined RTO4 in 2015, and has put to good use her undergraduate degree in Honours Business Administration from Ivey School of Business and a Master’s degree in Tourism Policy and Planning from the University of Waterloo,” says Mr. Harris. “Her professional background includes positions with economic development and destination marketing organizations across Ontario. Previously she served as Project Manager, Senior Project Manager and Director of Projects and Operations at RTO4.”
Ms. Gardi’s appointment follows the retirement in 2019 of David Peacock as CEO, who since 2011 has driven RTO4’s innovative, analytical and non-traditional approach to tourism growth and economic development. David will continue to serve RTO4 as Executive Advisor & Chief Strategist on a part-time basis. “The Board of Directors, staff and partners thank him for his exceptional vision, leadership and dedication,” says Mr. Harris.
“Andrea brings strong organizational and analytical skills and a passion to address the challenge of growing tourism in the region she was born and raised in,” says Mr. Peacock. “Her work has contributed significantly to the regional tourism model that RTO4 has developed for Waterloo, Wellington, Perth and Huron and for the Ontario Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries. I look forward to her future work as she builds on the solid foundations of RTO4 and steps into a well-deserved role as a recognized leader in the Province.”
Ms. Gardi says she was attracted to RTO4 in 2015 by its goal-strategy-measurement approach and for the innovative model and guiding principles it developed.
“As Executive Director, I look forward to serving the industry-led board and championing research and data driven decision making,” she says. “I strongly believe the key to successful destinations is highly engaged communities taking an active role in shaping their collective tourism future and will continue to develop and refine the RTO4 model for the region, province and Ministry.”
Regional Tourism Organization 4 Inc.
RTO4, one of 13 regional tourism offices established by the Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries in the province of Ontario, provides leadership and support to a flourishing tourism economy in Huron, Perth, Waterloo and Wellington. RTO4 has been called the “petri dish of tourism development in North America” by the Canadian Tourism Commission and pays particular attention to empowering operators, stakeholders and visitors to become the distribution channels for marketing purposes – a necessity in an environment of continually expanding distributed media and commerce.
Contact – RTO4 519-271-7000