Accor’s Australian chief awarded ultimate honour

Simon McGrath, Accor’s chief operating officer for the Pacific, has been named in this year’s Queen’s birthday honours list as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM).

The prestigious honour is given to only 365 recipients each year, with McGrath chosen for his outstanding service to the tourism and hospitality industry.

As the head of Accor’s operations in the Pacific, McGrath oversees a network of over 390 hotels across Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and French Polynesia, and is deputy chairman of the Tourism Transport Forum (TTF), as well as being a director of the Accommodation Association of Australia, Accor Vacation Club and the Reef Casino Trust.

He is particularly passionate about promoting Indigenous tourism, with Accor employing more than 650 Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander staff across the largest hotel group in the country.

Michael Issenberg, chair and CEO of Accor Asia Pacific, said: “I am incredibly proud to see Simon McGrath recognised amongst such esteemed company in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

“Simon not only drives the performance of our hotels in Australia, but more importantly, is personally invested in raising the profile of tourism as an important sector in the Australian economy and providing employment for tens of thousands of people.

“In addition, he is a true advocate for Indigenous communities and is passionate about providing meaningful opportunities for our indigenous staff.

“This honour is recognition of his hard work over more than 30 years in advancing tourism in Australia.”

Sir Peter Cosgrove, Australia’s Governor General, thanked all who had been named and said, “It doesn’t matter who you are, where you are from or whether you’re known to millions or just a few.

“If you have constantly put others ahead of yourself, served tirelessly and made a difference, you can be nominated and recognised by a grateful nation.”

The Order of Australia is an order of chivalry established in 1975 by Queen Elizabeth II to recognise Australian citizens for achievement or meritorious service.

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