Outgoing Tourism Industry Aotearoa CEO, Chris Roberts.

Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA) Chief Executive, Chris Roberts, has announced he will step down from the top job in pursuit of a new professional challenge and to recharge his batteries after an “intense 18 months”.

Roberts will vacate the CEO chair effective from 30 January 2022 after seven years with the organisation. Preparations have begun by the Board of Directors to seek a replacement CEO to begin soon after Roberts’ departure.

TIA Chairman Gráinne Troute paid tribute to Roberts for a long list of accomplishments, including the Tourism Sustainability Commitment, the Association’s ‘2025 and Beyond’ framework and the ‘Go With Tourism’ initiative designed to stimulate the labour market and encourage skilled and eager workers to consider and establish a career in the sector.

Chris Roberts speaking at NZHIC in 2018.

Furthermore, Troute said TIA-managed events such as TRENZ, Tourism Summit Aotearoa and the recently reintroduced New Zealand Tourism Awards have been lifted to a new standard, while the industry’s integration of Maori cultural values have been widely adopted and celebrated across the sector.

Roberts’ service to the industry will be formally recognised closer to his departure date, the Association said.