Board of Directors

THE-ICE Board of Directors

Dr Paul Whitelaw – Chair & Director

Paul Whitelaw has been a Director on THE-ICE Board since November 2012.

Paul joined Southern Cross University as Academic Director, The Hotel School Partnership, in 2020. Previously, Paul was the Associate Director of Higher Education for William Angliss Institute in Melbourne (2014-2020), and prior to this was a Senior Lecturer at the College of Business at Victoria University and the Centre for Tourism and Services Research, where he lectured in quantitative and computer based hospitality management systems in undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

Mr John Daly – Deputy Chair & Director

Mr John Daly is the Director of Quality Assurance, Swiss Education Group, Switzerland. He was educated in Ireland, earning a Bachelor Degree in Hotel Management from GMIT in 1995 and then later a Masters Degree in International Tourism from the University of Limerick in 2003. John also completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education from the Open University in 2006 and his Masters in Education with the University of Derby in 2017.

John first joined the Swiss Education Group (SEG) in 2003 as a full time Lecturer and soon moved position to Northwood University Program Manager at Hotel Institute of Montreux.  John later took the post of Assistant Academic Dean and then Academic Dean of Hotel Institute Montreux in 2010.

John was appointed Head of Accreditations at SEG in 2013, and in 2015 became SEG’s Director of Quality Assurance. Speaking three languages (English, French and Mandarin) John handles process management, accreditations, and faculty training and professional development.

John’s interests include education, politics and alleviation of poverty.

Ms Maria Christina G Aquino – Company Secretary & Director

Ma. Christina G. Aquino is the Chair of the Tourism Industry Board Foundation Inc, (TIBFI).  She is an Associate Board Member for the Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines (HRAP), and a Director/Company Secretary of THE-ICE Board.   Ms Aquino is a member of CHED Technical Committee of Tourism and Hospitality and an NCR Regional Quality Assurance Team (RQAT), a resource person for TESDA specifically in the Tourism sector, an ASEAN Master Tourism Assessor for Housekeeping and a DTI Philippine Quality Award (PQA) Assessor, and an accreditor for the Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities Commission on Accreditation (PACUCOA).  She is a Past President of the Council of Hotel and Restaurant Educators of the Philippines (COHREP) National and Asia Pacific Council of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education (APacCHRIE).    

Ms. Aquino recently retired from Lyceum of the Philippines University where she was the Executive Director for Linkages & Standards and International Affairs Office and Deputy Integrated Management Representative for various ISO programs (QMS & EMS) and oversees institutional and program quality assurance programs in the University.  She pursued local and international networking opportunities with academic institutions, government and industry partners in the areas of collaborations in student & faculty, research and extension programs.

She has teaching and administrative experiences in post-secondary school settings including a state university, a private technical vocational school offering Culinary Arts programmes and a private non-sectarian university.  Aside from teaching and administration, she was a flight attendant and cabin services line instructor for two international airlines, a foodservice operator, and liaison officer of a quasi-government agency.  She is an author of several books, journal articles, completed research papers in Tourism and Hospitality areas, and invited as speaker in several workshops, fora and conferences. Ms Aquino holds the qualifications of BS HRA (cum laude); MA in Education, major in Educational Administration, and has completed all the academic requirements for a PhD in Education, specialising in Curriculum Studies.  She has the following certifications:  AHLEI’s Certified Hospitality Education (CHE) and Certified Guest Service Professional (CGSP), STR Hotel Industry Foundations Introduction to Analytics (HIFIA), and ASEAN Master Assessor for Housekeeping. 

Dr Peter Ryan – Treasurer & Director

Dr Peter Ryan is an advisor to institutions involved in the provision of higher education in the independent higher education sector, with over 25 years’ experience. His specialties lie in designing frameworks for good corporate and academic governance in a higher education context and developing quality assurance systems for ensuring ongoing regulatory health. Peter has also provided strategic advice and regulatory due diligence for prospective purchasers of private higher education institutions.

Peter is Founder & CEO of the Higher Education Leadership Institute (HELI). HELI is a consortium of fellow higher education experts and researchers, delivering global best-practice advisory services and training to higher education providers.

In 2018 HELI introduced its Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Academic Practice to contribute to the continued elevation and professional standards of the higher education sector in Australia and internationally.

Dr Ryan was elected as Treasurer and Director on THE-ICE Board in 2019.

Professor JS Perry Hobson – Director


Professor Perry Hobson is the Pro Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement at Sunway University in Malaysia. He has an extensive international academic background in hospitality and tourism, holding a BSc (Hons) in Hotel & Catering Management from Oxford Brookes University (UK), a MS in Hotel, Restaurant and Travel from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst (USA), and a PhD in tourism from Southern Cross University (Australia). He has been the Editor-in-Chief of the SSCI-indexed  Journal of Vacation Marketing (JVM) since 1999. He was the Head of the School of Tourism and Hospitality Management at Southern Cross University (SCU) for many years, and during that time the university won both the State and National Tourism Awards for excellence in ‘Education and Training’.

Professor Hobson is the former Director/CEO of the THE-ICE, and he was responsible for transforming the organisation from being an initiative of the Australian Federal Government into an independent global accreditation body. In recognition of his contribution to education and research, he has been made a Fellow of the Council of Australasian Universities for Tourism & Hospitality Education (CAUTHE), an Honorary Fellow of the UK’s Council for Hospitality Management Education (CHME), is a recipient of the ‘Sue Beeton Award’ from the TTRA-Apac Chapter and was also the first person to be installed into “Hall of Fame” by THE-ICE for his support and contribution to the organisation.

Perry was the PVC for Global Engagement at Taylor’s University (Malaysia) from 2012-17 where he initiated and led the development of the university’s first Global Strategic Plan & Framework. During his time at Taylor’s University the institution received QS 4-Stars (with QS 5-Stars for “Internationalisation”) was ranked in the Top 600 of QS World University Rankings, Top 150 of the QS Asian Rankings, as was in the Top 21 of the QS World Subject Rankings for Hospitality & Leisure. With his team of colleagues he also grew the number of mobility partners at Taylor’s University to 200 institutions and helped to establish several short-term mobility initiatives. Perry is also a member of the international Advisory Board of the Observatory on Borderless Higher Education and a frequent speaker at international conferences.

Professor Dr Oswin Maurer – Director

Professor Dr Oswin Maurer is a well-published, highly-regarded and innovative academic with extensive international experience in key roles such as the development and implementation of internationally-accredited undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate programmes.

Dr Maurer’s areas of interest and expertise include: strategic management and marketing; international business and business economics; food industry management and internationalisation; and tourism management and economics.

With an academic and research career spanning close to three decades, Dr Maurer has authored/ co-authored an impressive range of publications and has been involved at the core level of designing and implementing educational projects for senior management and government officials across the continents including Europe, the Middle East, Australia, New Zealand and Asia. Dr Maurer has also been key in the development of various national research programmes on internationalisation, competitiveness and corporate social responsibility, to name a few.

In addition to his academic achievements, Dr Maurer is a much sought-after advisor and research consultant and is a key contributor in the building and leadership of an international research base and network through the establishment of the Competence Centre in Tourism Management and Tourism Economics (TOMTE). TOMTE organises several seminars and workshops every year, including the Consumer Behaviour in Tourism Symposium (CBTS) which takes place every year since 2008 in the month of December in Brunico.

Dr Maurer was elected as Director on THE-ICE Board in November 2015.

Dr John Fong – Director

Dr John Fong is the President of JF & Associates Global Consultancy that provides consulting services for the Education industry. His experience is diverse, having lived and worked in Asia, Australia, the Middle East and the USA, where he has specialised in a variety of fields such as Hospitality & Tourism, Business Development, Corporate Communications, International Relations and Law Enforcement.

He is most passionate about Education having been the President & CEO of a University, a Professor at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, a published author and an academic reviewer for journals and textbooks.

Dr Fong is also the Past President of EuroCHRIE (European Council on Hotel Restaurant & Institutional Education), the peak academic body that represents Hospitality and Tourism Educators in Europe, Middle East and Africa. He is an Auditor of THE-ICE (The International Centre of Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality Education) and was previously elected as a Board Director. A sought-after speaker and thought leader, Dr Fong was acknowledged in 2018 by URS International and AsiaOne Magazine as one of Asia’s Best CEOs. He was also recognised by EduTECH Asia with a Leadership award in 2019.

Associate Professor Scott Richardson – Director

Dr Scott Richardson is the Executive Dean at The Emirates Academy of Hospitality Management. With 15 years experience in the higher education field, Scott was previously Academic Director for RMIT University in Singapore and Dean of Hospitality at Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School. He is also an Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa. Scott obtained his PhD from Griffith University, Australia and has worked at several well-known Australian and International Universities.

Scott also has a wealth of tourism and hospitality industry experience having worked in the industry for more than 10 years. During this period, he worked in hotels, tourism and events companies and the travel industry. In his most recent industry role, he served as the Assistant General Manager of an Accor Hotels property in Victoria.

Scott is the author of more than 30 publications in leading tourism and hospitality journals and conference proceedings and is a member of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation Panel of Tourism Experts.

Ms Gienke Osinga – Director

Ms Gienke Osinga holds a Bachelor degree of the Hotelmanagement School The Hague and a Master in Change Management. Her first steps in her career were with KLM Catering Services at the procurement department inflight services. She switched to KLM City hopper, in those days a daughter company of KLM, where she was responsible, among others, for revenue management, commercial planning and the budgeting process.

Later on she worked for KLM the Netherlands, the marketing and sales department for the Dutch market, where she was involved in the first E commerce business projects such as online booking tools and online check in. Further responsibilities were the launch of a frequent flyer program, the introduction of a corporate credit card and more.

In 2001 she decided to switch to education. During her years with KLM she was asked as a guest lecturer, assessor and graduation coach for NHTV students, on a regular basis.  Working with students gave her so much pleasure and satisfaction that she took the opportunity when the start of a hotel management program in Breda, was announced. She started as a curriculum developer for the hotel management program of NHTV University of Applied Sciences.  Since 2012 she has held the position of Dean of the Hotel Management program and the Facility Management program of Breda University of Applied Sciences.

She is the chair of the Association of the Dutch Hotel Management Schools. Recently all public funded members of the Association successfully passed THE-ICE accreditation.

Assistant Professor Maria Cecilia Tio Cuison – Director

Maria Cecilia A. Tio Cuison is an assistant professor at the College of Tourism and Hospitality Management handling professional travel management courses such as Principles of Tourism, Global Tourism, Events Management, Tourism & Hospitality Marketing, Tour Guiding and Practicum.  She has assumed various positions in professional organizations such as Vice President of Tourism Educators and Movers Philippines (2008-2009), NCR Representative of the Association of Administrators in Hospitality, Hotel and Restaurant Management Educational Institutions of the Philippines (2011-2012) and Board Member of the Philippine Tour Operators Association (2012-2013).  She also has been active as an appointed Assessor for the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Regional Quality Assessment Team (RQAT) and the Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities Commission on Accreditation (PACUCOA).  She actively represents the university in professional organizations such as Council of Hotel and Restaurant Educators of the Philippines (COHREP), Union of Filipino Tourism Educators (UFTE), Association of Human Resource Managers in Tourism and Hospitality (AHRM) and the Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines (HRAP).

She has been a member of the CHED Technical Panel for Tourism and Hotel and Restaurant Management Programs since 2007. She is a Certified Hospitality Educator (2016, CHE) and Certified Guest Service Professional (2016, CGSP) by the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI).

At present, she is the Dean of the College of Tourism and Hospitality Management of the University of Santo Tomas.  She holds a Master in Education (2001) degree from the University of Western Australia, Bachelor of Science in Tourism Management (2008) from Siena College, Philippines, Bachelor of Science in Education, Major in History (1988) and a candidate for PhD in Human Resources Management from the Royal and Pontifical University of Santo Tomas.  Her research interests include internship, training, program development, human resources among others.