RCL Cruises has appointed Kathryn Valk as Director of Sales & Marketing, Neil Linwood as Director of Operations and Melinda Ryan as Head of Revenue & Planning, completing the new-look leadership team for Australia’s fastest-growing cruise company.
These senior appointments follow the appointment of Adam Armstrong to Managing Director earlier this year whilst Gavin Smith was promoted to Senior Vice President International.
“We are about to kick off our biggest season ever. As we begin the countdown to the December arrival of the all-newOvation of the Seas, the biggest thing to ever happen to Australian cruising, I am excited to welcome these new leaders to our local management team,” said Adam Armstrong.
“I’m confident that they will do a tremendous job in leading our brands through this milestone season – and well into the future,” he concluded.
Kathryn Valk joined the company earlier this month and leads the Marketing and Sales functions in Australia & New Zealand. She brings a wealth of experience from her previous position as Executive General Manager of Marketing & Sales with Ardent Leisure Group’s theme park and attractions division, comprising Dreamworld, Whitewater World and the Skypoint brands. Kathryn has also previously held the position of General Manager at both Creata, a global brand activation company working with McDonalds, Shell, Virgin and Kellogg’s, and Build-A-Bear Workshop Australia.
Neil Linwood joins with significant cruise industry experience including his most recent role as Managing Director of CLIA Australasia. With over 25 years of experience in a range of industries, previous roles include Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President Strategic Development at Carnival Australia as well as senior positions with Pepsi and Hilton International. His new portfolio includes responsibility for Port Operations and Customer Services.
Melinda Ryan has been promoted to Head of Revenue Management & Planning Asia Pacific, rounding out the new commercial team. Mel established Royal Caribbean’s Australian revenue team when the office opened in 2009, and now steps into an expanded tri-branded role which includes Celebrity and Azamara, managing deployment, revenue planning and air planning. Before joining RCL, Mel worked in revenue management roles for a number of international hotels.