The GALTA Board of Directors is elected to represent all Members and is supported by dedicated Representatives from across Australia.
Ph 0419 743 143
Louise was voted in as GALTA President at the 2019 AGM and has been involved as a Board Director since 2012. Her expertise and passion is in destination marketing and tourism strategy, drawing on over 20 years’ experience across State Government and regional tourism in Australia. Louise has held senior marketing positions with Tourism Noosa in Queensland and also at Tourism Victoria, where she led segment marketing for the State in a range of niche areas including gay and lesbian travel. She now runs her own tourism marketing business, Kindred Tourism, working with national and international businesses and destinations to enhance their tourism performance.
Ph 0406 384 886
Ben Woodward has grown up in the tourism industry, with his parents pioneering one of Tropical North Queensland’s premier attractions, Rainforestation Nature Park Kuranda, in the late 70s. He completed a Degree in Bachelor-Business (Journalism) at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane.
Ben lived in the UK where he worked as an LGBT+ Youth Worker, returning to Cairns to work for the family business, The CaPTA Group, which has become the region’s largest privately owned group of attractions and touring companies, consisting of Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas, Jungle Tours, Tropic Wings, Wooroonooran Safaris, Rainforestation, Cairns ZOOM & Wildlife Dome, and Australian Butterfly Sanctuary.
Basing himself between London and Cairns for several years whilst managing Western Markets for the group, Ben now has the role of Director of Sales & Marketing.
Ben has participated in Strategic Advisory Panels with Tourism Tropical North Queensland was Chair of the NQ YATEC Committee in 2012 and the National YATEC Chair. In 2013 he was awarded the Len Taylor YATEC Award for Excellence, and was was re-elected to the ATEC National Board in 2017. Ben has also been on the Board of Tourism Port Douglas & Daintree since 2014, serving in the role of Chair in 2018 and 2019 was also President for SKAL International Cairns.
Ben has volunteered with the Cairns Tropical Pride Festival, later becoming President, and DJs at regular events for the LGBT+ community, and is the organiser of gAyTE, a popular industry event at the annual Australian Tourism Exchange.
Ph 0416 290 291
Rod was the President of GALTA between 2011 – 2016 and was awarded Life Member of GALTA in 2016. Rod was the first Australian to receive an IGGY award (in 1995) for services to gay tourism internationally. He served three years as a board member and Director of Tourism Noosa, was a committee member of the Sydney Gay Business Association and still proudly represents Australia for the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA).
Social Media & Membership
Ph 0421 109 775
Dennis officially joined GALTA in 2011 as Director and Company Secretary and also volunteered previously introducing tourism products to GALTA.
Dennis has a long career in the airline & tourism industry spanning over 25 years and is currently with new airline start-up, Bonza. Previous roles include Global Head of Marketing, Partnerships, Distribution with On The Go Tours, Country Manager APAC for Back-Roads Touring, General Manager Australia for Scoot Airlines, 15 years with Virgin Australia in various commercial roles, Ansett Airlines and various hotel positions.
Dennis enjoys all things about travelling and connecting with the community and was welcomed as a Life Member at the 2018 AGM.
DEI Advocacy & Content Lead
Grace is Guest Services Associate at Ramada By Wyndham Marcoola Beach and has had a passion for creating unforgettable hospitality experiences from an early age. As a child she would transform her kitchen into a café, complete with menus, her bedroom into a hotel, complete with a reservation log, and her living room into a carnival, complete with ticket sales and prizes.
With each real-world experience in hospitality and events she becomes more passionate about the field and has discovered a multitude of possible careers that can enable her to draw on other passions in my life. With a background in Social and Behavioural Sciences and Art History, Grace's areas of interest include:
- Community development through tourism and hospitality
- The importance of arts and cultural events to community wellness
- Inclusion and visibility of marginalised communities, with a special focus on the LGBTQIA+ community
Over the years she has worked with hotels, performing arts centres, local non-profits, and city-wide cultural events. Whether at a hotel, a museum, or an entertainment venue, she brings her passion for creating memories to every position and use her skills to better the community.
Ph 0416 005 486
Originally from Sydney, Andrew's passion for travel and tourism shined through straight out of school, when he attended the University of Technology, Sydney, for his Bachelor of Management in Tourism. After working for many years as a Travel Agent in Sydney’s Northern Suburbs, Andrew moved to Los Angeles for 13 years to take up a position with Qantas Vacations/Helloworld Travel.
Working through all aspects of the business, Andrew was Director of Sales, selling Australia, New Zealand & The South Pacific under a number of brands, to the travel trade. In particular looking after the consortia groups of Ensemble, American Express, Signature & Virtuoso.
Since returning to Australia, Andrew has started his own representation company, Smile Marketing, using his knowledge of the tourism industry, knowing all key players from consortias and wholesalers in the USA, to Inbound tour operators and key companies in Australia. He has worked with various companies such as Tasty Tours, Coastal Cruises Mooloolaba, Sydney WorldPride23 and Australia's inaugural SXSW event to help them become export ready and welcome international visitors.
Ph +61 481 746 287
With a background in arts administration and event management of more than 20 years, Rohan has had the opportunity to work on a diverse range of productions from intimate theatre through to large-scale events.
Key appointments have included General Manager for the former Riverina Theatre Company in Wagga Wagga, Northern Rivers Performing Arts (NORPA) in Lismore, Feast Festival in Adelaide and Jigsaw Theatre Company in Canberra. Additional appointments have included Presenters’ Coordinator for the Victorian Arts Council (now Regional Arts Victoria), Precinct Operations Supervisor for the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games, Creative Producer for the Adelaide Queer Film Festival (2008) and Interim Company Manager for Red Stitch Actors Theatre (2012).
He has completed the Associate Diploma in Small Companies and Community Theatre through Swinburne University, and has completed the Graduate Diploma of Management (Arts and Cultural Management) through the University of South Australia. He regularly appears on JOY 94.9’s Sunday Arts Program as a guest.
Regional NSW Representative
Ph +61 419 230 670
Mario is Co Founder and Managing Director of Planetdwellers Travel Tours and Events, a proudly gay-owned and operated Australian travel agency, tour operator and events organising company that has been connecting LGBTQ+ travellers with welcoming people and places for over 15 years.
Prior to founding Planetdwellers, Mario worked in a variety of capacities in the retail travel sector, including roles with inbound tour business Out and About Travel and global retailer Flight Centre.
Mario is also Immediate Past President of GALTA, a role he held from 2016 to 2019.
Regional NSW Representative
Barry is Co-Founder, General Manager and Lead Tour Guide with Planetdwellers Travel, Tours and Events, a proudly gay-owned and operated Australian travel agency, tour operator and events organising company that has been connecting LGBTQ+ travellers with welcoming people and places for over 15 years.
Barry is passionate about ensuring all travellers to Australia, specifically who identify with the LGBTQ+ community and their friends, are treated with respect and valued, while being shown the majestic beauty, natural wonder and party atmosphere that is Australia and the amazing world we live in!
Ph +61 448 866 977
For the past fourteen years Peter has managed Waterfront Dunsborough – thirteen prestige holiday homes located in the south west region of W.A.
Peter has been in the industry since 1984, starting at Merlin Hotels in Malaysia.
Peter has also worked in Perth, Sydney, the Sunshine Coast, Canberra and Auckland, and he knows his way around a hotel, at every level! He has won many awards for his work.
He is a founding committee member of Busselton Pride (WA). He has two degrees.
Whitsundays + FNQ Representative
Ph +61 401 075 693
Nathan has worked in the tourism and hospitality sector for the past 20 years, managing backpacker hostels/bars/nightclubs and also as a travel agent, and brings a wealth of tourism marketing and social media knowledge.
For the past 7 years he has been the Sales Captain for multi-award winning companies Ocean Rafting in the stunning Whitsundays and Ocean Safari in Cape Tribulation in far North Queensland, locally owned and family operated for over 23 years.
He is also on the board of the Airlie Beach Backpacker Assoc (ABBA) and has been working with Whitsundays tourism and hospitality operators since 2008.
He was on the board of Adventure Queensland for a few years and in 2018 was voted Tourism Industry Legend by his peers at the Adventure Tourism Awards – Australia and New Zealand.