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Above: Bryan Death (at right) pictured at the brand launch of the Answer the Call of Vanuatu, August 23 2019.

For immediate release

The Vanuatu Tourism Office (VTO) is deeply saddened by the news today of the passing of VTO board member Bryan Death.

Bryan has been a leading figure in Vanuatu’s tourism industry for over seventeen years.

He was a former GM of Iririki Resort and Moorings Hotel, and a partner in resort management consultancy firm Total Management Solutions.

More recently, he developed private villa accommodation listing website Vanuatu Luxury Holiday Homes and acquired Pango resort Angelfish Cove Villas.

Beyond the positive contributions Bryan made to Vanuatu’s tourism industry as a manager, investor and business owner, though, his contributions as an industry leader are perhaps his greatest legacy.

In addition to his role as President of The Vanuatu Hotel and Resorts Association, Bryan was the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Tourism Councillor, and a board member of the Vanuatu Investment Promotion Authority.

Bryan has been a VTO board member since 2013 and was also Chairman of the Tourism Marketing Development Fund (TMDF).

Chairman of the VTO Board, Ben Leeshi, paid this tribute to Bryan:

“This is a very sorrowful occasion not only VTO, but for Vanuatu’s entire tourism sector. We have lost a leader and an advocate for the positive development of our industry. His loss will be felt not just by those who knew him, but by all of those who benefited from the positive changes that he helped instigate over the many years of his involvement.”

VTO’s CEO Adela Issachar Aru made this statement on behalf of VTO:

“Bryan was instrumental in securing funding for VTO. He championed industry in all aspects of tourism, including funding, resourcing, and strategy.

“He fought for the consideration of the private sector in decision-making by Government, and he led the private sector by encouraging their participation in destination marketing and ensuring they had a pathway to contribute.

“He was not afraid to challenge the status quo and challenge us all to think more broadly—and to do better. Thanks to Bryan, the partnership between VTO and TMDF has never been stronger, and our collaboration and trust has been critical in the return of visitor numbers and interest in Vanuatu.

“I would like to acknowledge the importance of Bryan’s steady leadership within the tourism industry, and to honour the critical part he played in assisting the industry to bounce back from Cyclone Pam.

“Bryan was also instrumental in the recent proposal for the amendment of the VTO Act Cap 142 to strengthen industry’s contribution to the 2030 Shared Aviation and Tourism Vision.

“Under his leadership, TMDF invested in support of the reopening of the Melbourne route with Air Vanuatu.

“He further facilitated support to deliver the VTO Market Development Plan to develop the Adventure and Meetings, Incentives, Conferencing, and Exhibitions (MICE) market, with funding support from both TMDF and Air Vanuatu.

“Bryan fought tirelessly on VTO’s behalf, with passion and commitment, and always put in 100%. Tourism in Vanuatu is all the better for his involvement.

“As sorrowful as this occasion is, we will always be grateful for Bryan’s open and cogent leadership style, his constructive criticism, and his devotion to improving the tourism industry for all stakeholders, whether big or small.

“The Government through the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Jotham Napat and the Ministry of Tourism, as well as the Vanuatu Tourism Office, our board of directors, and our staff, would like to share our deepest sympathies and condolences with Bryan’s partner Val, his children, and his friends at this time.

“We will all miss his contributions, his smile, and most of all his dedication to growing tourism in a country that he loved so much.”