Live Video Replay: New BTA CEO Kevin Dallas

November 17, 2016

Newly appointed Bermuda Tourism Authority [BTA] CEO Kevin Dallas introduced himself to the public during a live video chat on Bernews Facebook page this afternoon [Nov 17], saying that everyone that he has met so far has been “really positive and encouraging.”

Mr. Dallas, a Bermudian, is going through a corporate transition process as he prepares to take over as chief executive in January 2017, once current CEO Bill Hanbury completes his contract.

12-minute live video replay with new BTA CEO Kevin Dallas

When asked about yesterday’s Tourism Summit — which was the first time he met many stakeholders — Mr. Dallas said “It was quite a baptism by fire, being not yet in the job and really meeting the team for the first time and meeting many of our stakeholders and partners for the first time, but it was a great day and it helped that everyone was wearing a name tag.

“It was a really interesting opportunity to reconnect with some people from my past and to see all the energy in the room I think was probably the thing that I really took away. Just how incredibly positive people are now feeling about the momentum behind tourism.

When asked about coming back home to take the position, Mr. Dallas said “I was born in Bermuda, I grew up in Bermuda, I am a Bermudian. I left Bermuda to go to University. I thought I would be away for a few years after that and then come home and find what I wanted to do or what I wanted to be when I grew up.

“Obviously there was no Bermuda Tourism Authority in those days, but tourism was always something that I was interested in. It’s actually the reason that I made some of the choices that I made around my career, I actually went to South Africa for a long time to work for South African Tourism, but there hasn’t been the right opportunity for me to come home.

“There hasn’t been a job that I thought was the job that I’d be really excited to do here. Then with Bill deciding that now is the time to move on, and with tourism here being in such a great position as we look to the future, it felt like a great moment to come back and take up the reins and build on what Bill and the team have done.”

When asked for his thoughts on the public scrutiny and the accountability that comes with running an organization like the BTA, Mr. Dallas said, “Public scrutiny, I think, is something to be welcomed. I think we are largely funded by the government, they’re an important stakeholder.

“I think it’s important that we need to be transparent and open with people and I think people have a right to ask questions and get information. When I reflect on the last few years, I think as we have been working to turn the corner, I think people have been quite quick to be critical and to judge.”

“We’re obviously in a different and much more positive place now and I really hope that as people question us and as we give them answers, as we explain what we’re doing and why, that people get behind that and support the BTA.”

When asked about taking on the position, Mr. Dallas said, “It certainly feels like it’s an enormous responsibility to carry on the work that Bill and the team have been doing and to really help us go to the next level.

“Since I’m not really in the job yet and I’m just getting my head around the numbers, I don’t have any projection for the future, but I do believe that 2016 has been an inflection year for us in that as we’ve now shown really strong growth I certainly believe we should be carrying that momentum through 2017 and the America’s Cup and beyond.”

When asked what in his career up to this point has helped prepare him for this role, Mr. Dallas said, “I think there are really three things that I talked to the selection committee and the board about around that. The first is that for 14 years I was a strategy consultant.

“I worked with different organizations including tourism authorities, but also large corporations and other government agencies around what their strategy should be, how they would grow in the ways that were important to them. I’ve done that for a long time.

“The second is, of course, in my current role what I do is product or proposition development and marketing and demand generation for a global technology company. Actually, in many ways, the role of the BTA is proposition development, enhancement of our local tourism product, and of course, marketing Bermuda around the world.

“There’s actually quite a lot of overlap between what this organization is all about and what I do in my current role. The third would be – the organization that I work for today is a leading service provider to the airline and travel industry.

“While my direct tourism experience is further back in my CV, my recent experience has actually been a lot about working with, in particular the digitally-enabled and eCommerce led tour operators and travel agencies.

When asked how his meeting with Premier Dunkley went, Mr. Dallas said, “It was great to meet with the Premier this morning. I think he’s certainly very supportive of what we’re trying to do.

“It was good to meet yesterday with Minister Fahy, who I think is also very supportive of what we’re trying to do. In fact, I think everyone that I’ve met so far has been really positive and encouraging about both what’s been done as well as this next phase of our growth.”

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Comments (19)

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  1. Onion Juice says:

    From South Africa to Bermuda, a like for like transition.

    • Terry says:

      You are a f.)( moron Onion.

      Hopefully your seed will not grow.

      See you next week.

      • wahoo says:

        He is trying to spread the divisive race seed. That is all that they have left, it is a shame that Bermuda does not have a viable opposition.

        • mixitup says:

          He’s speaking the truth if you ask me.. :/

          • Toleratate says:


          • Onion Juice says:

            De divisive race seed was spread centuries ago when we were stolen from our Homeland !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

            • The Real Onion says:

              While slavery was truly tragic and horrible, not everyone was “stolen”. Many were captured and sold by their own people. In fact slavery in many forms is still a huge problem in many countries including Africa. Sad, but true. I’m not saying this makes it any better, or justifies what was done, but if you want to tell the story tell the whole story, not just the parts that help paint the picture you want us to see.

            • says:

              Younshould think about going back then. Immigration is very welcoming in most African countries.

            • Zevon says:

              No one is stopping you from going back.

            • Derek Wade says:

              You must be really old!

    • The Real Onion says:

      Maybe if Onion Juice spent less effort trying to be the first person to complain after every article on Bernews and spent just a little time actually doing something positive for the community Bermuda would be a better place. Unfortunately his mindset will always keep him back. He (or she) is the his own worst enemy. Were you not hugged enough as a child? I hope you are surrounded by a large family because with such a negative attitude all the time, I trust you don’t have many real friends that want to spend time with you.

  2. Clare says:

    I met Kevin at the Tourism Summit yesterday. I am really excited to have a smart young Bermudian take over the reins and lead the BTA. Bill Hanbury and the BTA team have really done an amazing job dragging our tourism industry out of decline and into the digital age. Kevin seems like a great fit to take over for the next chapter. Things are looking up, Bermuda!

  3. frank says:

    why did Glen Jones not get that job

  4. wahoo says:

    Who’s desk? Haha-you-are-an @$$ K!$$#41!

  5. somuchless says:

    Looks like the gov is gonna continue funding this authority. Oba you stated that they will become self sufficient. What happened?