15 year hospitality vet hops on board Gympie tourism venture
Fifteen years of tourism experience has hopped on board the Mary Valley Rattler with the appointment of a Sunshine Coast industry stalwart to the board.
Julie Cullen has been appointed to the heritage train’s board in a move RRC chairman Ian McNicol said will help widen the market for the Rattler.
Ms Cullen is the owner advice business Tourism Tap, and has previously been the general manager of Underwater World and the Cairns Aquarium.
She has also worked with Aussie World, Visit Sunshine Coast and Ergon Energy.
Mr McNicol said Ms Cullen’s extensive experience with major attractions would be invaluable for fully developing the potential of the Rattler to deliver economic benefits to Gympie’s tourism sector and the wider community.
“There are few tourism professionals in the Sunshine Coast region who can offer such incisive skills as Julie,” Mr McNicol said.
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“We are at a stage where the Rattler has had two productive years back on the rails, but with the impact of bushfires, COVID and the associated economic challenges, we will be looking to fast-track the business over the next twelve months and beyond.
“Despite the severe operating conditions of 2020, we were able to deliver a significant operating profit over the past three months, and we’re on track to continue the above-forecast performance over the summer season.
“Given that travel is likely to be restricted largely to domestic travel in 2021, we are looking to widen our market base, attract new markets, re-establish groups business, deliver more events and continue to expand products.
“Julie’s experience will be particularly beneficial in expanding the Rattler’s horizons, building partnerships and developing further the capabilities of our team and our outstanding group of volunteers.”