Meet Pádraic Gilligan, SITE Chief Marketing Officer
2018 is a year of massive change and innovation at SITE with the appointment of an independent CEO and the outsourcing of the MarCom and Events functions. As previously announced, our MarCom partners have been chosen and the new SITE marketing team of Westley Hackmann (Dana Communications), Aoife McCrumm (SoolNua) and Julie Johnson is already up and running. Leading the team as Chief Marketing Officer, a newly created executive leadership role, is SoolNua’s Pádraic Gilligan.
There’s a touch of the “poacher-turned-gamekeeper” about Gilligan’s appointment. For the past three years he has served as a SITE Foundation Trustee under the leadership of Kurt Paben and Rhea Stagner. Last year, in the role of Vice-President Research and Content, he oversaw the launch of Motivate, SITE’s content repository and the SITE Index, one of the SITE Foundation’s most impactful research projects to date.
Pádraic (Gaelic for Patrick and, for the uninitiated, pronounced PAW – RICK) comes to the staff role of SITE CMO with an impressive volunteer pedigree. He served as President of his local SITE chapter in Ireland in the 1990s, chaired the European SITE University in Bruges in 1999, was voted Member of the Year in 2001, served on the SITE International Board of Directors for 6 years and was elected global president of the association in 2008.
“Other than my business partner, Patrick Delaney, SITE and its people have been the single most formative influence on my career as an incentive travel professional. I attended my first SITE event way back in 1994 in Puerto Rico and, because of Patrick, was fortunate to connect quickly with incentive travel legends like Fay Beauchine, Chris Perks, Jim Dittman, Jeff Broudy and the ones we’ve lost – Mike Hurwitz, Moira Hearn, Paul Flackett, Jane Schuldt. Those were golden days – a bit like living in Italy during the Renaissance or Britain in the early years of the Beatles.”
So how does PAW-RICK see his role as CMO over the next couple of years? “I’ll be working a lot on refining SITE’s brand value proposition and trying to channel SITE’s rich legacy and heritage. We need to reconnect more meaningfully with our past – we really are standing on the shoulders of giants – while we define and refine SITE’s indispensable contribution to its members, the industry, the business world and society at large."
“We need to create discussion, dialogue and debate with 4 audiences – first, our membership, then our industry, then the world of business and then society at large. I believe in the awesome, transformative power of travel experiences and, while we cannot claim to be curing cancer, I’m with Mark Twain when he says ‘travel is the enemy of bigotry’. We can make a real difference. We are making a real difference.”
Get to know Pádraic!