CLIA names Kelly Craighead as president and CEO

Travel and tourism industry expert will replace current CLIA leader Cindy D’Aoust from 1 January 2019
CLIA names Kelly Craighead as president and CEO
Kelly Craighead will start her new role as the head of CLIA on 1 January 2019 (Image: CLIA)

By Rebecca Gibson |

Tourism industry stalwart Kelly Craighead has been appointed as president and CEO of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), effective from 1 January 2019.

Craighead will replace Cindy D'Aoust, who took the helm of the global cruise association in July 2016 and will retire at the end of 2018. She will build on her 15 years of experience in the public and private sectors, including her most recent position as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Travel and Tourism in the US Department of Commerce where she advanced travel and tourism priorities within the administration and with Congress.

“I am extremely pleased that Kelly will be joining CLIA to support the global cruise industry during this golden age of cruising,” said Arnold Donald, CLIA’s global chairman and president and CEO of Carnival Corporation. “Her extensive experience in the hospitality and travel industries, combined with her leadership skills and passion for results, are second to none. This is an exciting time for our industry, steeped in opportunity and I look forward to working with Kelly in the years to come.”

In her new role, Craighead will be responsible for managing the operations of CLIA's global team and promote the value of cruise travel worldwide. Craighead will also continue to engage with several international organisations that are focused on advancing travel and tourism priorities.

“Demand for cruising is exhibiting strong growth, making the cruise industry a critical partner to localities, regions and nations around the world,” said Craighead. “I am excited to be joining such a strong and well-respected organisation at an important time for the industry. I look forward to listening, learning, and better understanding the needs of our members and building on the strong foundation.”

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