Travel Industry Experience
My career with Thomas Cook (Formerly My Travel Canada) began in 2004, and over the last ten years I have been a key contributor to technology management during substantial change management. My work with this leader in leisure, travel, and tourism services has been focused on leading the rapid evolution of application development and business support functions, and as a senior Director of Technology, I have taken on oversight of telecommunications, enterprise infrastructure, solutions architecture, and development of core distribution APIs.
CHIEF SOLUTIONS ARCHITECT
TravelBrands Inc. (Formerly Thomas Cook North America), Toronto ON
- Built out IT infrastructure and business critical applications while improving team retention throughout major departmental change, overseeing the IT department across 4 departments, working to asses projects, demand, and business ROI on IT-related requests.
- Oversaw day-to-day activities supporting 2 fully-fledged, Tier II datacentre locations in Toronto and Montreal as well as internal applications and VoIP telephony systems spanning 140+ retail locations.
- Administered a $MM annual budget, building the rationale for capital purchases, including a SAN for data growth and preservation, blade infrastructure, and new hardware while decommissioning outmoded hardware.
- Revamped telecom maintenance and support fees contracts by transitioning from standard PRI to VoIP across the company. Additionally, spearheaded a major telecommunications upgrade following the acquisition and integration of Sears Travel.
- Instilled a sense of trust within the staff, hosting a variety of seminars and lunch-and-learn sessions for IT and other business teams in order to establish IT as an important strategic partner within the business.
- Led and provided for due diligence on 5 datacentre moves, 4 full office relocations, 108 retail store migrations, and the full-scale integration of seven distinct companies into a consolidated, centralized reservation system.
- Launched the company's ecommerce and reservation infrastructure involving full B2B connectivity and redundancy across 124 retail locations supported by 2 full-scale Tier II datacentre operations.
- Introduced a landmark dynamic packaging engine with components for bundled airline and hotel reservations combined to develop a caching system for developing enticing travel packages.
- Collaborated with the development team to lead analysis of competitor yield management and caching systems and develop competitive in-house alternatives using .NET, HPUX, Linux, and Mac technologies.
- Played an instrumental role in the development and deployment of in-house survey, CRM, event registration, invite, content management, help desk, and ticketing systems with streamlined functionality via single sign on.
Thomas Cook North America (Formerly My Travel Canada), Toronto ON
- Promoted from manager, I assumed a key leadership role in the early stages of application development before earning promotion into successive managerial and directorial positions in the IT area while additionally leading a team of business development managers.
My Travel Canada, Toronto ON
- Earning accolades for my natural leadership skills, I was promoted to manage application development prior to My Travel Canada's acquisition by Thomas Cook. Here I played a key role in managing development teams through a light project management process using agile development methodologies, in addition to contributing invaluably to core coding and programming.
My Travel Canada, Toronto ON
- Drawing on my strong technical skills, I opted to become a member of My Travel Canada, and within a year was recognized for my skills in web application development, accelerated strategic thinking, and project leadership.
"Don has the ability to solve business issues with technology solutions, quickly. A unique talent that I have not encountered anywhere else."
Susan managed Don indirectly at My Travel Canada and Thomas Cook North America
"Don is a great team player, always happy and ready to help others. He is always on top of things so he delivers projects with quality and meeting deadlines. Don is dedicated, loyal, competent and very talented."
Manon worked with Don at Thomas Cook North America