Face of the Future



Call for PATA Face of the Future Submissions


PATA builds your people, so each year a special award and prize is presented to an exceptional rising star in travel and tourism who has exhibited initiative and leadership in the advancement of tourism, as well as demonstrated commitment to the sustainable development of the Asia Pacific travel industry in line with PATA’s mission. The award is known as PATA Face of the Future.


Are you the Face of the Future?


Submissions are now being accepted. The winner will receive not only global media exposure via PATA’s communication channels, but they will also receive a round-trip economy flight to Frankfurt, accommodation, and a ticket to IMEX, May 20-22, 2014.


The 2014 PATA Face of the Future Award will be presented to one outstanding individual at the Association’s next the Dinner and PATA Awards Presentation during PATA Board Meeting and 2014 AGM on Saturday, May 17, 2014 at Chimelong Hengqin Bay Hotel, Zhuhai, China. The deadline for submissions is April 11, 2014.




An individual is eligible to enter the 2014 PATA ‘Face of the Future’ Award if he or she is:


• Aged 35 and below as of May 17, 2014

• Working for a PATA member organisation (in good-standing as of May 17, 2014)

• Undertaking post-graduate travel and tourism studies at a PATA member educational institution




The judges will seek to identify an individual who has best:


• Exhibited initiative and leadership in the implementation of local, regional and/or international tourism initiatives (including research projects).

• Demonstrated commitment to the sustainable development of the Asia Pacific travel industry in a spirit compatible with PATA’s mission.


The finalists will be judged by former PATA Face of the Future Winners, external judges and PATA management.




1. The candidate him/herself OR a third-party person can make the nomination

2. No entry form is required. Simply submit a nomination letter, along with the nominee’s full professional contact details and bio-data with photo (JPG format, 300 dpi resolution, maximum 500KB total file size), in soft copy only (DOC or PDF file; maximum three pages).

3. Submit a video (up to three minutes in length) detailing the nominee’s experiences to date and aspirations for the future of the travel and tourism industry

4. Please email the entry, clearly labelled “PATA Face of the Future 2014 Nomination,” to Parita Niemwongse at fof@PATA.org by March 28, 2014


All entrants will be notified by April 21, 2014.


PATA Face of the Future 2013


Mr James Mabey is the recipient of the most prestigious honour for young tourism professionals in Asia Pacific - the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Face of the Future 2013 award. Mr Mabey is the Senior Director of Development for Marco Polo Hotels, based in Hong Kong.


Mr Mabey is set to receive the honour at an official award ceremony taking place April 25 in Bangkok on the eve of the PATA Annual Summit in Bangkok. Courtesy of IMEX (the worldwide exhibition for incentive travel, meetings and events), Mr Mabey will be offered complimentary registration and subsidised travel to attend IMEX 2013 in Frankfurt, Germany, May 21-23.


At Marco Polo Hotels, he is responsible for the company's growth and development across the Asia Pacific region. Marco Polo Hotels, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Wharf (Holdings) Ltd, owns and operates hotels across Asia Pacific. Mr Mabey has over a decade of business consulting and real-estate development experience in the region, and was previously Director of Development for Jumeirah Private Island, Phuket. He also served as Economic and Tourism Development Advisor to the Thailand Ministry of the Interior and Phuket Governor's Office from 2005 to 2011.


A native of the US, Mr Mabey holds a MBA in Hospitality and Tourism, and is completing a Doctorate in Hospitality and Tourism Management from Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He is a frequent speaker at major industry conferences and events and the author of multiple published articles and studies on hotel development. He has lived in Asia since 1999. He is fluent in Thai, Mandarin, Spanish and Laotian.


Mr Mabey said: “I am honoured to be the recipient of this prestigious award. Having spent almost half of my life in Asia-Pacific and worked in more than a dozen countries, I have seen, first hand, the benefits that responsible tourism development can bring to communities. I have long admired PATA's steadfast commitment to building responsible development in the Asia Pacific travel and tourism industry. I am delighted to have this opportunity to be a part of PATA's long tradition of excellence.”


He added: “For nearly 15 years, I have been fortunate to have incredible opportunities to lead teams in hotel development, teach students hospitality and tourism, advise government leaders and study hospitality and tourism management at leading universities. I hope to leverage these experiences to promote greater cooperation and coordination between hospitality and tourism stakeholders. I will continue to develop and support initiatives that enable stakeholders to come together and utilise the power of hospitality and tourism for the benefit of travellers and their host communities.”


Mr Mabey will receive the award at a social function on April 25 called, “PATA and the Siam Center: Next Generation Synergy,” which is being held to celebrate PATA's 15 th Anniversary in Bangkok. The event will take place at Siam Discovery Plaza. It is hosted by Siam Center and is supported by Thai Beverage PLC.



How the PATA Face of the Future Award Helped a Career



   “Winning the PATA Face of the Future award has not only been wonderful industry-led recognition, but it has connected me directly with inspiring travel and tourism leaders across the globe. I've been able to engage in meaningful and relevant discussions on topics in our industry, as well as provide input on cross-border committees with the view of provoking a ‘next gen' thought-driven approach. The Face of the Future is a truly unique opportunity to have a voice and hear from today's leading experts. It can only contribute positively to anyone's career journey” – PATA Face of the Future 2012, Justin Malcolm , General Manager, Aloft Bangkok – Sukhumvit 11.



Face of the Future Award Helping Samoa’s Sustainable Agenda

“The PATA Face of the Future award programme has been an amazing learning experience. With events and forums provided by PATA and IMEX, I have been fortunate to meet, network and learn from industry leaders that are passionate about sustainable tourism. Through this programme, I was also able to showcase my beautiful homeland Samoa, and her unique people and culture. Thank you PATA and Face of the Future Programme for such a wonderful experience” -- Tavalea Nilon, PATA Face of the Future winner 2011







“PATA enhances collaboration with academics and educational institutions and provides a motivating factor for the future and dynamic leadership of the travel and tourism industry” – PATA Face of the Future 2010, Thomas Toney Kulampalil, Senior Lecturer and Programme Director, School of Tourism, Taylor’s University. View clip.







“It is my honour to be awarded the PATA Face of the Future 2007. I was very motivated to work harder. Today, Buffalo Tours has increased its revenues and number of employees from 250 staff to 2,000. It contributes a lot more to the community and travel industry in Vietnam. The Face of the Future Award is an excellent programme for young professionals. I do hope a lot more young people will get motivated. I would like to say thanks to PATA and PATA members for this wonderful award.” - Tran Trong Kien, CEO, Buffalo Tours, PATA Face of the Future Award Recipient 2007

View the clip here.

“The journey which originally looked difficult was becoming more satisfying” - Mr Shikher Prasai, Managing Director, Natraj Tours & Travels, Nepal  and PATA Face of the Future 2006


“When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. It is what I believed when I joined travel and tourism industry at the age of 21 years in 1999 at Natraj Tours & Travels in Nepal. It was not an easy task to continue with the legacy of more than 30 years and work with senior and experienced people. With a strong belief of “I can do it”, it was a journey of perseverance. I started as Honorary Secretary of the PATA Nepal Chapter for four years. Then with the support and trust from the industry, I became the youngest Chapter Chairman at the age of 28. Setting aside personal motives and acting with transparency, integrity and humility, my contribution was eventually acknowledged with PATA's Face of the Future award in 2006 when I was 28 years old. The journey which originally looked difficult was becoming more satisfying. I had the biggest "open university" to learn from and met a number of good friends. The PATA award gave me more energy and enthusiasm to further contribute to the trade and seek broader horizons for the betterment of tourism in Nepal.”



“The PATA Face of the Future Award opened doors to wider networking opportunities with industry leaders within

PATA. My participation in various PATA events, and especially the PATA Young Tourism Professionals (YTP)

Programme, has truly enhanced my career development. I sincerely recommend Young Tourism Professionals to

participate and explore the opportunities awaiting for them” - Silvia Sitou, the PATA Face of the Future Award recipient 2004










“PATA Face of the Future represents the next generation of Pacific Asia travel industry leaders who demonstrates leadership qualities and a clear dedication to the Pacific Asia travel industry. I would like to thank PATA for the great opportunity in connecting me with travel and tourism leaders across the globe”, said Mr Mayur (Mac) Patel, PATA Face of the Future winner 2002.









Past Faces of the Future  

2012     Mr Justin Malcolm 

2011      Ms Tavalea Nilon

2010      Mr Toney K Thomas                                              

2009     Mr Andrew Nihopara

2008     Mr Kenneth Low

2007     Mr Tran Trong Kien

2006     Mr Shikher Prasai

2005     Ms Sally Hollis

2004     Ms Silvia Sitou

2003     Mr Vivek Sharma

2002     Mr Mayur (Mac) Patel