Andrew Thomson MA MIH, Head of Hospitality, Events & Fingal, Edinburgh, has been elected Chairman of the Scotland Branch of the Institute of Hospitality.
At last week’s IoH Scotland Branch Annual General Meeting (AGM), Andrew formally took over the Chairmanship from Gordon Mackintosh MIH, General Manager of the Carnoustie Golf Hotel & Spa, on the Angus coast near Dundee. Andrew runs the Royal Yacht Britannia’s Hospitality & Events team and their luxury 23-cabin floating boutique hotel, Fingal, berthed on the Scottish capital’s Leith waterfront.
One of Scotland’s most respected hospitality, tourism and event management educationalists Ken Alexander – a member of the organising committee for the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games, and a lecturer at both City of Glasgow College and Ayrshire College – was elected to the newly created position of Vice-Chairman of the IoH Scotland Branch.
Commenting on his election as Chairman, Andrew Thomson said: “I am delighted and honoured to have been elected Chairman of the Institute of Hospitality Scotland Branch. As Scotland’s hospitality industry recovers from the unprecedented challenges of the COVID pandemic, membership of our worldwide professional body is more important than ever. The Institute’s priority is to nurture future and existing talent in the industry through promoting lifelong learning and inspiring hospitality professionals to perform at their very best. Its membership grades are an industry recognised acknowledgement of each individual member’s qualifications and professional experience. As such, they are an invaluable benchmark for future employment.
“With the job market opening-up again, there has never been a better time for Scotland’s hospitality managers and aspiring managers to increase their skills and knowledge through the many benefits afforded by membership, at both national and branch level. These range from conferences, webinars, and educational and social networking events, to online learning courses and awards.
“The hospitality industry is a people’s industry and having fun is also a key aspect of IoH branch life. We have just finalised two such events: a one-day golf tournament on Friday, 17 September at the Auchterarder Golf Club, Perthshire; and for food and drink lovers, a Scotland Branch Burns Night Supper, hosted by the luxury 4-star Maryculter House in Aberdeen, on Friday, 21 January 2022. I look forward to meeting new Institute of Hospitality Scotland members at these events and at our other activities over the coming months.
“I am very excited about continuing and building upon the excellent work of my predecessor Gordon Mackintosh, whom I’m pleased is remaining a member of the Scotland Branch committee. We owe him an enormous debt of gratitude for his inspirational leadership at such a difficult time for our profession.”
Commenting on his election as IoH Scotland Branch Vice-Chairman, Ken Alexander said: “It is a great privilege and honour to have been elected Vice-Chairman. I look forward to continue to forge links with the education sector and with all the different sectors that make up Scotland’s exciting hospitality industry, while ensuring that people development remains at the forefront of our profession.
“We urgently need a new cohort of talented hospitality, tourism and event management students as we rebuild our businesses in readiness for what promises to be a post-COVID boom for the industry, and because of a hard Brexit that has resulted in the departure of many EU staff. Toward this end, I am delighted to report we are re-launching the IoH Scotland Branch’s popular ‘Quaich’ awards for Scotland’s top hospitality and tourism students.”