Board of Directors
Jim is a skilled business technologist with more than 25 years progressive experience in a variety of industries. He is regarded as an independent, strong direction setter, self-motivated, and a conscientious technology professional with strong buisness acumen and customer focus.
As Disney's subject matter expert for travel distributor integrations, Jim is an ardent proponent of the OpenTravel interfaces. Through his expertise, in the development of B2B specifications, establishing strong communication protocols, and industry leading best practices and ability to drive tactical and strategic direction enabled Disney to successfully introduce the OpenTravel interfaces to new travel distributors and expand OTA integrations by nearly 400% over the past 2 years. At the same time, he led Disney's effort to increase utilization of OTA interfaces features by transitioning from manual processes to communicate hotel rates and descriptive information to travel distributors to automated notifications.
Lisa Fues is Marriott's Director of Reservations, Inventory and Distribution. Marriott International, Inc. (NYSE:MAR) is a leading lodging company with more than 3,600 lodging properties in 71 countries and territories. It is ranked by FORTUNE as the lodging industry’s most admired company and one of the best companies to work for.
Ms. Fues is responsible for providing electronic distribution perspective and business requirements, project management, and best practices support to strategic Marriott initiatives in the areas of reservations and distribution systems. She is a 25 year Marriott associate and has had various roles in eCommerce, leading internal and external systems development projects, product rollouts, and marketing to support electronic sales through marriott.com, GDS, and eChannels.
As part of Marriott's eCommerce organization, Ms. Fues was the business project manager for Marriott’s first Direct Connect interface using the OpenTravel specification. She has participated in subsequent internal and external Marriott implementations of OpenTravel messages since becoming active in OpenTravel in 2001.
Senior Advisor, Partner Management
DB Systel GmbH
Susanne Auinger, MBA is Senior Advisor of Partner Management/Alliances in the Division Portfolio and Partner Management of DB Systel GmbH, the IT service provider of Deutsche Bahn. She is responsible for the new tactical and and strategic partnerships for the DB IT - Environment focused on digitalization of 4.0 and future technologies including direct responsibility of defined key partners. Before taking over her new task in 2016, she was the Head of Sales Channel Management and spent 5 years leading an expert team in sourcing.
Susanne received her Master's degree from the University of Applied Sciences Landshut in Germany in cooperation with the University of San Diego. She gained experience as a domain expert and as a leader in ICT marketing and sales managing international sourcing projects and and key account business as well as cooperation partners.
She also drives the DBS participation in the EU research project MASAI (mobility based on aggregation of services and application interconnection) under the European Chapter H2020, analyzing mew technologies and investigating and developing tools to enable a seamless travel experience in Europe.
Matt Blackmon has been a part of the travel industry for almost 15 years. He began his career as a flight attendant, then a travel agent and finally becoming a leader in travel technology at American Express. He is currently the Business Architect at SuperShuttle/ExecuCar and owns the integration path.
Matt has spent the last 8 years intensely focused on integrating and uplifting travel systems. He has lead global efforts with major travel agencies that integrated and connected multiple GDS's, customer profile systems, and online booking tools using the OpenTravel schema.
Matt is passionate about creating personalized experiences for travelers through networks of integrated systems and data share allowing for an end to end customer experience. He believes that OpenTravel is the key to allowing unified messaging amongst partners to achieve these experiences.
Brian Bell is the president of LinksRez, a leading lifestyle technology distribution company that sponsored 1.0 and 2.0 Golf lite messaging for OpenTravel Alliance.
Before being one of the founders of LinksRez, he worked in the airline industry for Lufthansa and British Airways. Brian has been in the travel industry for over 20 years that includes working for airlines, car rental, and travel companies that have operated globally. His responsibilities included operations, sales, and technology implementation globally. He is passionate about the mission statement of OpenTravel Alliance to create a gloval standard for interoperability between air, transportation, and hotel.
Brian grew up in Germany and is fluent in German.
VP of Architecture
Stuart Waldron is the VP of Technical Architecture at Travelport leading the transformation of travel content acquisition and distribution. He is also a former board member of the OTA and longtime member of the OTA architecture work group.
Prior to this Stu was the lead architect at Amtrak for ResNG on their next generation reservation effort, leading internal and external (OTA) efforts to define a rail common service model for commodity reservation functions. Before that, Stu was the architect for global Travel and Transportation in the IBM Distribution Industry business unit. He was the overall technical lead for IBM solutions, relative to the travel and transportation industry (air, car, hotel, ground), including a travel industry framework and rail offerings. Stu was responsible for coordinating the various technical and product teams in IBM, as well as IBM strategic partners. Stu left IBM after 23 years as a Senior Technical Staff Member and was a member of the Enterprise Software Architecture Board and other technical forums.
Stu has over 30 years experience in the T&T industry, starting in 1977. He has been deeply involved in every major upgrade of reservation and departure control systems for the North American airlines and active with many international carriers as well. Stuart has worked for Eastern, United, and American airlines He was also chief architect at Sabre responsible for the next generation GDS system. In rail, Stuart has worked at the French railroad (SNCF) to reinvent passenger reservation services to meet the needs of high speed rail traffic. Stuart has also worked with India, China, Italian, and Egyptian and other rail carriers as they work to modernize their passenger service system.
Paul is the Senior Vice President of Development at OpenJaw Technologies. Since joining OpenJaw in 2007, Paul has directed the teams that manage the OpenJaw t-Retail Platform and its components. Paul's responsibilities extend from Product Management to Product Marketing and Product Development.
Paul has nearly 30 years experience in the travel industry. Prior to joining OpenJaw, Paul spent nearly 20 years at Datalex where he held a variety of software engineering and management roles. He spent 5 of those years leading the US development team that delivered product-based solutions to major US clients such as Delta Airlines, ATA Gelco, United Airlines, AeroMexico, Cendant and Best Western.
On behalf of OpenJaw, Paul is an active contributor to the Order Management taskforce as part of the DDXWG pusing forward IATA's NDC initiative.
Paul graduated from Dublin City University with a degree in Computer Applications and recently completed a Master of Business at the Irish Management Institute.
Buddy Altus is Director of Electronic Distribution in the Online Marketing Group at the Avis Budget Group. Mr. Altus’ responsibilities include managing product development and business from third party e-commerce applications and services. This includes ABG’s XML interface, the private label booking engine used by airlines, corporate accounts, and travel agencies, ABG mobile sites, and Global Distribution Systems.
Mr. Altus' experience prior to ABG includes e-commerce companies in music and content protection and another in group buying. Additionally, he spent 10 years at American Express where he was part of the team that developed AXI, American Express’ first corporate booking tool. Before Mr. Altus moved to travel and e-commerce he developed programming language software at Intermetric
Nancy Little is the Director of Partner Connectivity - Product Management, Global Revenue & Property Based Systems for InterContinental Hotels (IHG) PLC. IHG is a global organization that franchises, leases, manages or owns over 4,700 hotels and 688,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories. Its broad portfolio of ten hotel brands includes, InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, Hotel Indigo Hotels, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express Hotels, Staybridge Suites Hotels, Candlewood Suites Hotels, EVEN Hotels, HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts and Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants.
In her role, Mrs. Little has global responsibility for the development and management of all Third Party connectivity including Global Distribution Systems (GDS) and Online Travel Agencies (OTA) and is involved in the development if the new IHG guest reservation system. She manages a team of Product Managers in the United States and China.
Mrs. Little is a seasoned veteran in the travel industry, with extensive distribution experience in hospitality and airline. She has held roles of increasing responsibility with IHG and with the former Eastern Air Lines. She has served on the HEDNA Board of Directors and was a co-leader of the HEDNA Product Automation Working Group.
Greg Poirier is a Hospitality Industry Veteran. Over the course of his career he has worked in hotel operations with major companies such as Hyatt Hotels and Walt Disney Resorts. In addition, for world renown independent boutique properties such as the famous Sundance Resort, and the standard bearer Private Club Resort of the West Indies, The Mill Reef Club.
Married with two children, he lives in the North Shore of Boston, MA.
A hotelier by profession, he also fed an insatiable curiosity by pursuing research into the great vineyards of the world and in 2011 completed a Masters of Business Administration program from Ecole de Management in Bordeaux, France now KEDGE.
An entrepreneur with a background in technology and wine, he is in constant pursuit of brilliant technological and marketable solutions to wine and travel industry business problems of tomorrow.
Jennifer joined Sabre's Hospitality Solutions Division in 2017 as VP, Product Management focusing on optimizing distribution for hotel clients through third parties like global distribution systems, online travel agencies and wholesalers. Sabre Hospitality Solutions serves hoteliers around the globe with the industry's most innovative and comprehensive suite of technology services and products. Sabre's solutions empower hotels and hotel chains to deliver true hospitality reliably and at scale, improving guest experience throughout the traveler journey.
With over 17 years of travel industry experience and a passion for data and analytics, she has the ability to develop product and business strategies that drive customer success. Her deep understanding of hospitality distribution, digital commerce and technology has been gained through her pivotal roles with DHISCO, Travelocity, and Sabre as well as AT&T and Nortel Networks. Prior roles include senior leadership roles in product management, business operations, product strategy, account management and financial and strategic analysis.
Jennifer earned a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Texas at Austin.