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Friday, August 14, 2015


(Michelle Constant, CEO of BASA)

BASA CEO appointed to SA Tourism Board and wins prestigious award.

Business and Arts South Africa CEO, Michelle Constant, has been elected to the Board of South African Tourism (SAT) and was recently named a regional winner in CEO Magazines Most Influential Women in Business and Government annual awards.

“The recognition by CEO Magazine and being asked to be on the SAT Board is truly an endorsement of the good work that my colleagues at Business and Arts South Africa are doing as a whole, and of their incredible support - and I am thrilled with both honours,” stated Constant.

Constant was named the regional winner (South Africa and SADC South) of the Arts and Culture category at the CEO Awards event held at the Vodacom Dome in Midrand in July. Aimed at honouring Africa’s Most Influential Women in Business and Government and Titans Building Nations, she will now represent the region at an upcoming, continent-wide awards event, joining winners from Mauritius, Kenya, Uganda, Egypt, Ghana, Zambia and Namibia.

The CEO Magazine accolade comes a few months after Constant was officially named to the SAT Board.

“We are very pleased to welcome Michelle to the SA Tourism Board,” said chairperson, Vincent Zwelibanzi Mntambo. “She will make a great contribution to the effort to market South Africa as a destination as she deeply understands the contribution that arts can make to tourism and vice versa. Her knowledge, networks and passion for the arts, tourism and destination South Africa will help us to take on the challenges ahead with greater confidence.”

Kwanele Gumbi, Chairperson of BASA said: “Michelle brings the detail and depth of the arts sector for the improvement of the South African Tourism brand. Her energetic and creative approach will help drive focus to the value of the arts and culture tourism.”

Constant said her appointment meant she will be able to lobby and advocate for cultural and artistic tourism to be placed prominently in South Africa’s tourism marketing mix: “I am excited to be able to engage in an ongoing conversation about the role that arts and culture tourism can play in drawing both internal and international visitors to different parts of this beautiful country,” commented Constant.

“You only need look at global benchmarks like the Venice Art Biennale and the upcoming Edinburgh International Festival to understand the powerful attraction of the arts to a broad cross-section of visitors. The National Arts Festival has also just proved locally that it is capable of growth, with total number of tickets issued increasing by nearly 7 percent, even in a tough economic climate and at a time when the arts are facing increasingly difficult challenges.

“Alongside being in a strong position to place the arts as an essential part of our tourism mix, I am honoured to have joined such an esteemed board. I am sure that I can learn a great deal from my fellow board members in a way that can only benefit that business and arts nexus that BASA is focused on,” Constant concluded.

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