BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – Former chief executive officer of JetBlue Dave Barger joins a growing list of top executives and celebrities who will participate in Caribbean Week New York, a series of tourism trade and consumer events organized by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) to showcase the region in one of its most important markets.
Already, executives from Google and Caribbean Journal, as well as film and stage actor Robert Riley, have been confirmed for Caribbean Week New York.
An airline industry veteran who over the course of a career spanning four decades became one of the most recognized leaders in global aviation, Mr. Barger will be the motivational speaker at the Students’ Colloquium, the Caribbean Week youth programme designed to engage the future leaders of the Caribbean in tourism related activities.
Mr. Barger retired from his post as CEO of the New York-based carrier last year after eight years at the helm, and under his watch JetBlue became the fifth largest airline in the United States.
“It is wonderful delights to have Mr. Barger deliver the motivational speech to the tourism industry’s rising stars. His successes at JetBlue and, prior to that, at Continental Airlines, and his community involvement in a number of key areas including education, means he has a compelling story to share,” said Sylma Brown, head of the CTO’s New York office which manages Caribbean Week.
Last year’s winner of the colloquium, the Turks & Caicos Community College, will be joined by three other Caribbean tertiary institutions, the College of the Bahamas, University of Technology of Jamaica and the University of the West Indies St. Augustine, Trinidad & Tobago campus in the contest for the best tourism-related business plan.
The students will be challenged to create a sustainable bed and breakfast business in the Caribbean that will become the new face of accommodation in small lodging establishments in the next ten years; develop and design an innovative strategic plan to increase intra-regional and domestic tourism; or demonstrate how an agritourism programme might be sustainably developed to support rural communities in the Caribbean.
The Students’ Colloquium takes place on Wednesday 1 June from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, New York.
Organized by the CTO, Caribbean Week New York is the largest, most engaging regional tourism activity in the “Big Apple” and typically attracts thousands of participants, including Caribbean tourism officials, the media, artists, performers, celebrity chefs, fashion designers, models, investors and other strategic partners. It showcases the sights, sounds, colours, culture and unique holiday experiences of the Caribbean and combines business sessions and consumer-oriented events with food, fashion, entertainment, sales and networking opportunities.
Caribbean Week is supported by Academy Engraving, Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, the Atrebor Group, the Islands of the Bahamas, Barbados, Caribbean Airlines, Cayman Islands, CitiTech Solutions, Dominica, El Dorado Rum, Empire State Building, Grenada, Jade Mountain/Anse Chastanet Resort, Jamaica, Martinique, Nassau Paradise Island, Nevis, Saint Lucia, St. Kitts, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Travel + Leisure, Resonance Consultancy; Trinidad and Tobago, Turks & Caicos Islands, Sugar Bay Resort & Spa and Unique Vacations, Inc./Sandals.