Global Leader Profiles
Melanie Waters-Ryan – Chief Operating Officer
Melanie joined Flight Centre Travel Group Limited in 1987, after completing university in Brisbane and travelling overseas.
She began her career as a retail travel agent, before progressing to team leader roles at Flight Centre’s busy Toombul and Indooroopilly shops. As her career progressed, Melanie successfully took on a variety of management roles in the company’s retail, wholesale and human resources (Peopleworks) areas. Roles included national training manager, land contract leader, global human resources manager, brand leader of Great Holiday Escape and leader of the Infinity wholesale brand.
Melanie is a key member of FLT’s global executive team in her current role as COO and is directly responsible for the air, land and IT functions.
Adam Campbell – Chief Financial Officer
Adam became Flight Centre Travel Group chief financial officer in August 2015, after previously serving as the company's Australian CFO since 2012. In his role as Australian CFO, Mr Campbell worked closely with the previous CFO Andrew Flannery, chief operating officer Melanie Waters-Ryan and Mr Turner, while helping to spearhead a number of key business initiatives.
These initiatives have included the company's strategic journey from travel agent to the world's best person-to-person travel experience retailer, the ongoing focus on costs and the deployment of numerous process changes to improve both productivity and business acumen in-store.
Chris Galanty, MD – United Kingdom
Chris Galanty started at Flight Centre’s Putney store as a consultant back in 1997, during its start up phase when the company had under 10 shops in the UK, and around 20 staff.
Since then, Chris has progressed through the company and took on responsibility for Flight Centre Travel Group Limited's South Africa market in 2009.
Today, Flight Centre UK & South Africa operate 13 brands with turnover in excess of £1.1 billion and employ over 2300 people. Both companies regularly receive awards for ‘leading employers’ in their respective countries and play active roles in both the leisure and corporate sectors of both travel markets.
Dean Smith, MD – United States of America
Dean Smith, president of FC USA Inc., has roots in the travel industry dating back to 1996. Smith has been in his current position for the past four years, overseeing all 11 of FC USA’s brands in the United States. He has led the charge on a number of ground-breaking initiatives, including his most noteworthy and most recent achievement, the opening of the first-ever New York Travel Center in Manhattan. The 10,000-square-foot, three-floor space on Madison Avenue marks an unprecedented move by the company with a half-dozen brands of FC USA under the same roof for the first time.
Dean started out with Flight Centre Travel Group Limited in Australia, the parent company of FC USA, as a travel consultant with the company in 1996 in Melbourne. He worked his way up the ranks, and today he oversees 2,000 employees across the company’s retail, wholesale, corporate travel and ecommerce brands in the US.
Leonard Donaldson – Chief Information Officer
Leonard has had a long and successful career at FCTG that started in July 1997 as a software developer based in Brisbane.
Leonard then progressed through various leadership roles culminating in relocating to the USA as part of our integration team post the Lib/Go acquisition in 2008.
In 2009, Leonard was appointed to the role of CIO for the USA and then as regional CIO for the Americas. Today he is FCTG's Global CIO and plays an integral role in leading the company in its global transformation of core systems and platforms to ensure the necessary technical foundations and capability for our future success. This role is full circle for Leonard, leading him back to where it all began, based in our Brisbane Head Office
Atle Skalleberg – Chief Digital Officer
Atle Skalleberg - Chief Digital Officer
Boston-based Atle was appointed global Chief Digital Officer in 2016 following FCTG's acquisition of StudentUniverse, where Atle was CEO.
The StudentUniverse acquisition became a catalyst for digital change management and as the newly appointed CDO, Atle plays a central role in setting the strategy and improving our digital commerce capabilities - including online presence, user experiences and booking services - to help Flight Centre become the global leader in blending offline and online travel services, to cater to the demands of tech-savvy leisure travellers.
Atle continues to sit on the Board of Directors at StudentUniverse.
Carole Cooper – Global Peopleworks Leader
CAROLE COOPER - GLOBAL PEOPLEWORKS LEADER
Carole has enjoyed a 19 year career with Flight Centre Travel Group, in roles that have taken her across the globe. Carole joined Flight Centre as a retail consultant in Vancouver, Canada in 1998 and in her first year was the country’s second top novice. In 1999, she was promoted to team leader and led her shop to profit in just her third month. A year later, she moved to the Peopleworks (human resources) division as a recruiter and from there, became a highly successful area leader and then nation leader for Canada retail and Peopleworks.
In her five years at the helm of Canada's retail operations, Carole grew the business from 100 to 156 shops and almost doubled the number of consultants to more than 700. She was appointed Queensland EGM in 2010 to oversees the company’s retail and corporate travel operation in the state and since 2012 she has been Global Peopleworks Leader.
In this role, Carole oversees all things people - from recruitment, learning and development, leadership and human resources to initiatives including the Business Ownership Scheme, Healthwise, Flight Centre Foundation, Flight Centre Business School and Travel Academy.
Gary Smith – Non-Executive Chairman
Gary Smith, non-executive Chairman, appointed to FLT board 2007
Gary has vast tourism industry experience and has served on a diverse range of boards and tourism industry related bodies during the past 30 years.
Gary is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Institute of Chartered Accountants. He is also a director of Michael Hill International Limited.
Graham “Skroo” Turner – Chief Executive Officer
Graham Turner, Chief Executive Officer, appointed to FLT board 1995
Graham “Skroo” Turner worked as a vet in western Victoria before moving to London. In London, he and friend Geoff “Spy” Lomas, both of whom were working as vets, took their first steps into the travel industry in 1973 when they invested the equivalent of $A1300 in an ageing bus and started operating budget double-decker bus trips around Europe, North Africa and Asia.
Skroo’s initial involvement with Top Deck ended in the mid 1980s, when he and his colleagues sold the business to management and devoted their full attention to Flight Centre, a business that had less than 30 shops at that time. As the long serving chief executive officer and managing director of the public company that grew from the small band of Flight Centre shops, Skroo has since presided over a golden era of growth and prosperity for Flight Centre Travel Group Limited.
Robert Baker – Non-Executive Director
Robert Baker was appointed as a non-executive director on 20 September 2013. His other positions with FLT are Audit & Risk Committee chairman and Remuneration & Nomination Committee member. Rob was formerly an audit partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers, with experience in the retail, travel and hospitality sectors.
Rob holds numerous positions outside of FLT, these include Chairman of Goodman Private Wealth Ltd since October 2014, Chairman of Archdiocesan Development Fund, Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane since January 2018, Chairman of the the Audit and Risk Committee of Australian Catholic University Limited since May 2015, and, Chairman of RightCrowd Limited since August 2017.
John Eales – Non-Executive Director
John Eales was appointed by the FLT board in 2012 as non-executive Director, and is chairman of the remuneration & nomination committee and member of the audit committee.
After retiring from rugby in 2001, John has served in executive or advisory positions with a number of companies and organisations.
John co-founded the Mettle Group in 2003 – a corporate consultancy which was acquired by Chandler Macleod in 2007 and was a director of QM Technologies in the lead-up to its IPO in 2007 and its subsequent acquisition by Computershare in 2009. Currently, John sits on the Palladium Group, Magellan Financial Group, Executive Health Solutions and FujiXerox–DMS Asia Pacific boards. In addition, he is an occasional lecturer at Sydney’s University of Notre Dame and continues to consult to other major Australian and international companies in the field of leadership, people and corporate culture.
John is a columnist with The Australian Newspaper in the fields of both sport and business and the author of two books, Learning From Legends Sports and Learning From Legends Business.
Colette Garnsey – Non-Executive Director
Colette was appointed as a non-executive director on 7 February, 2018. Colette has a 40-year career in retail, marketing and distribution. She has served as a director and advisory board member for both Not-For-Profit enterprises and government boards.
Having held senior roles at David Jones, Pacific Brands and Premier Investments, Colette has played a key role in Australian retail industry using her deep brand, consumer insights, digital and marketing experience to develop strategy and grow businesses. She has served both on the advisory board of Australian Fashion Week and the Melbourne Fashion Festival. Additionally, Colette has used her unique consumer insights to advise CSIRO, The Federal Innovation Council and the business advisory boards of various Federal Trade and Investment Ministers.
Colette is now a non-executive director serving on the boards of public companies and continues her role as advisor to Federal Minister for Trade and Investment.