Roshene Singh, Chief Marketing Officer, South African Tourism, Johannesburg

Ask anyone in the industry to describe Roshene Singh and you’ll immediately hear words like “dedicated,” “passionate,” and “single-minded.”  As CMO of South African Tourism, Ms. Singh not only intimately understands her brand, she lives it. Her commitment to destination South Africa is absolute and her love for her homeland is powerful.

Yet, she's a scientific marketer who understands exactly how to tum creativity into practical application that's brand appropriate.  She insures that her campaigns for South Africa are deliverable within budget; are message and strategy appropriate, and consumer focused.  She's a champion of both the product and the work.

Roshene Singh did not take the typical route to a career in marketing.  However, her experience has led to great knowledge about South Africa and its people.  She has always been committed to making a better life for all and her work is inspired by her passion and commitment.

Roshene started as a high school English teacher.  She then followed with a position in teacher training and development for township schools in the early nineties. Her move to marketing occurred in 1993 when she embarked an 8-year journey with the African National Congress (ANC) in election campaigning and organizational training. Roshene ultimately headed the ANC’s Elections Unit for five years.

Last year, she had the unenviable task of creating a marketing program for South Africa following the World Cup 2010 campaign—just as the eyes of the world naturally move to new destinations.  Yet “Leave Ordinary Behind” delivered a bold and convincing statement for an extraordinary country to guarantee that South Africa continues to be front of mind.  Visually rich, highly participatory and consumer-interactive, and consistent across multiple platforms and languages, the multi-local and pan-regional campaign continues to offer new ideas about South Africa to entice and educate visitors throughout the world.

Roshene Singh’s primary responsibility is to deliver Tourism Growth to insure that South Africa is a preferred destination for leisure and business travel. She is also charged with sustaining brand growth globally. This includes enhancing the use of research in developing brand communications, fine-tuning a data-driven Marketing Growth Strategy, developing marketing plans, and leading the portfolio and country teams as they initiate these programs.

Her rise to Global CMO began by first managing the Domestic portfolio to encourage a culture of travel among South Africans.  She then took on the Europe portfolio where she championed arrivals from core markets in Europe.

Ms. Singh knows only too well that nothing is static in tourism.  Markets and consumers both react to change and stimulate change themselves.   Yet, she understands the quicksilver nature of global marketing and has the rare ability to react fast to trends to position South Africa favorably on the world stage.  She steps in, often with immediate notice, to address stakeholders both at home and abroad.  She combines her expansive knowledge of the brand with her love for the destination to deliver messaging that's powerful and compelling.  Of course, she does not do all of this alone; she has a great team in her colleagues and in her agency partners. Yet Roshene Singh always leads from the front.  Always.