Industry stalwart, Linda Pampallis, will be moving to Germany this month as she steps down as CEO of Thompsons Africa. Linda has shown unwavering support of SATSA and commitment to industry growth and prosperity as a whole. We’ve compiled some anecdotes that perfectly sum up why she’ll be so sorely missed.
Craig Drysdale, General Manager: Global Sales at Thompsons Africa writes:
For me Linda Pampallis is an absolute stalwart and gem in the South African Tourism landscape. When Linda started in tourism almost forty years ago it was not common or easy then in our country or elsewhere for a woman to be a leader of a big tourism company – especially selling South Africa, but despite these challenges Linda not only lead Thompsons Africa to be one of the most successful inbound companies in Southern Africa she also became a force to be reckoned with in the industry.
One of the biggest attributes I have always admired about Linda is her absolute ability to sniff out potential good business. I remember once early in my career I was working on a very big bid proposal, we were sure to win this so I thought – this would be yet another feather in our cap – Linda looked at the brief from the potential customer and without hesitation told me “They are ‘only fishing’, Craig. You are wasting your time.” I thought “Yeah-right. This is solid,” and lo and behold it was just that – a fishing exercise. That kind of intuition only comes from years of experience and knowing the business.
I know I speak on behalf of many, but Linda will be sorely missed especially by the staff at Thompsons Africa. The fortunate thing of being in the travel industry it should allow me a reason or excuse to visit her from time to time in Hamburg, especially to look at any new bid proposals I come across.
Ursula McKee shares:
I will miss seeing you, Linda and Roland at Rockwell. You were always so friendly towards us guides and interested in how we were doing. Enjoy Germany.
Sean Kritzinger, Managing Director and Co-owner Giltedge Africa:
Linda has been a doyen of the Inbound Industry for many decades. She is highly respected and has influenced many people in their careers and changed their lives for the better. A professional extraordinaire, she has always made time to communicate with fellow tourism companies even if competitors. She has left a legacy and will be sorely missed.
Farewell and best wishes, Linda!