Hospitality Professionals Clarke and Azeez Bring Expertise to CHTA Board

Heidi Clark is a new board member of The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association Education Foundation (Submitted photo)

The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association Education Foundation is welcoming two new trustees into the fold who will help deliver on the foundation’s mission to support Caribbean hospitality professionals in their careers.

“We are proud to welcome Heidi Clarke and Noorani Azeez to our board of volunteer trustees,” said CHTAEF chair Karolin Troubetzkoy. “They have a wealth of knowledge to share with the hospitality professionals we support, and they share in our commitment to the betterment of this industry and everyone in it.”

Heidi Clarke, executive director of the Sandals Foundation, has managed development projects across eight Caribbean islands, focusing on the areas of education, environment and community.

Clarke, who studied child psychology and education at the University of Miami, also has experience working with abused children and under-resourced schools in the South Florida community.

Born and raised in Jamaica, she has demonstrated a passion for service and commitment to community development through wide-ranging volunteer work. Clarke is a certified game warden with the National Environment and Planning Agency and sits on the boards of the South West Coast Fish Sanctuary Alliance, the Fish Sanctuary Network, the North East Regional Health Authority Fundraising Committee, and the Culloden Early Childhood Institute.

Currently serving as CEO of the Saint Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association as well as president of the Caribbean Society of Hotel Association Executives, Noorani Azeez has extensive tourism experience, knowledge and insight.

Noorani Azeez is a new board member of The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association Education Foundation (Submitted photo)

Azeez has also been a human resources consultant with the Human Development Network for 12 years and formerly sat on the board of directors for the Soufrière Marine Management Association.

He gives back to his local community in many ways, though perhaps most notably through his work with the Lions Club of Gros Islet in the north of St. Lucia.

The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association Education Foundation provides training for current hospitality industry professionals and scholarships for the next generation of Caribbean tourism superstars. Funds raised by CHTAEF helped train more than 750 hospitality workers in 2019 and, in the past five years, have provided more than 80 scholarships.

Its volunteer trustees give their time, services and products to support the development of young Caribbean people desiring a career in tourism and hospitality, as well as Caribbean nationals who are already employed in the industry and want to upgrade their skills and knowledge to further their career paths.

The foundation’s current trustees include Omar Robinson, chief operating officer of Arya Resorts Management (Jamaica); Magnus Alnebeck, general manager of the Pelican Bay Hotel (Bahamas); Ernest Dwight, founder and former president of SouthWood (United States); Mike Hampton, professor and former dean at the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management at Florida International University (United States); Amrita Bhalla, founder of AB Consulting (Canada); Richard Doumeng owner and managing director of Bolongo Bay Beach Resort (U.S. Virgin Islands); Nadine Rankin, joint CEO at AMG (United Kingdom); Neil Forrester, principal at Azingo Hospitality (Antigua); Neil Kolton, director, Caribbean, Florida and Southeast, business development at Interval International (United States); Gilda Gumbs-Samuel, CEO of the Anguilla Hotel and Tourism Association (Anguilla); and chair Troubetzkoy, executive director of Marketing and Operations of Jade Mountain and Anse Chastanet resorts (St. Lucia).