Michele Saran has been named the new Chief Executive Officer of Explore Waterloo Region.
Saran comes to Waterloo Region after serving as the CEO of Tourism Nova Scotia. There she was focused on establishing strong relationships with industry stakeholders, making research-based decisions and leveraging local, regional and national partnership opportunities to support and grow Nova Scotia’s tourism economy.
Prior to COVID-19, the province broke records for both revenue and visitation following the strategy which she worked to create. Under Michele’s leadership, the organization won national awards for both product development and media relations programming.
Commenting on her appointment, Saran said: “This has been a time of unprecedented challenge in the tourism industry and I am looking forward to returning to Ontario and working with operators in Waterloo Region as we push toward recovery. I’m excited by the region’s brand that celebrates the past and embraces the future. We will continue to leverage that brand as we work to grow leisure travel as well as meetings and sport tourism business.”
Saran replaces Minto Schneider, who is retiring from the organization after nine years in the role.
Said Schneider: “It has been an honour to work with the many great tourism operators and attractions across Waterloo Region. It has been challenging and exciting work. We have come a long way in promoting what Waterloo Region is, and what there is to do here. I am confident Michele will continue the great work we have started. She brings a wealth of experience that will significantly benefit Waterloo Region.”