Reed Travel Exhibitions Chairman of World Travel Market (WTM), Fiona Jeffery, has been appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in Queen Elizabeth’s II New Year’s Honors list.
Jeffery’s award of the OBE is for her services to the travel and tourism industry during her 26 years at WTM, the leading global event for the travel industry.
She joined the marketing department of Reed Exhibitions in 1986 and became Group Marketing Manager in 1988, before being promoted to Marketing Director in 1991.
In 1992, Jeffery helped launch Arabian Travel Market before becoming WTM Exhibition Director and then assumed the same role for British Travel Trade Fair in 1996.
In 2000, she was appointed WTM Managing Director before assuming her current role of WTM Chairman in 2008.
Throughout her time in the industry, Jeffery has championed responsible travel, creating an international environmental initiative in 1996 before launching World Responsible Tourism Day in 2007.
The 2011 New Year’s Honors list was chosen based on the UK’s Prime Minister David Cameroon Big Society initiative, which is focused on people making a real difference to communities through volunteering, fundraising, social action, and philanthropy.
In 1998, Jeffery launched travel industry water aid charity, Just a Drop, which aims to reduce child mortality caused by unsafe water. The charity has undertaken more than 92 water aid projects and helped more than 1.5 million children and their families in 29countries.
“I was genuinely stunned, but it’s a great honor, and I’ve received lots of wonderful emails and texts over the last week,” Jeffery said. “The best thing is being able to share it with so many colleagues both at Reed Exhibitions and within the travel industry who have all played their part over the last 26 years in making World Travel Market what it is today, and also the many people who have also latterly helped support and grow Just a Drop.
“The joy others have taken for the award has been particularly nice to see and [has] given me the greatest of pleasure. My sincere thanks go to colleagues and those in the industry who have worked with and supported me over the years.”
Fiona is a trustee of the charity The Travel Foundation and she received the Shine Woman of the Year Award in 2008.