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Evelyn Wever-Croes

Aruba Sets Shining Example for International Women’s Day

Islanders in the Caribbean nation of Aruba are celebrating the shining example their homeland sets for International Women’s Day on March 8th.

In addition to having a woman prime minister, three leading roles for this Dutch Caribbean’s economically-vital tourism industry are filled by women.

Eveleyn Wever-Croes became Aruba’s first female prime minister in 2017, leading the island’s first coalition government through many issues, including the turmoil of Covid.

Meanwhile, the two top posts in the Aruba Tourism Authority are held by women, while the influential Aruba Hotel and Tourism Association’s (AHATA) president and CEO is Tisa LaSorte.

Tisa la Sorte

An Aruba native who completed her higher education in America, LaSorte’s career started as a TV reporter at TeleAruba, after which she moved to the US where she worked for 20 years in broadcast news management.

After returning to Aruba she entered the tourism industry, including a management position at Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort.

Following a reorganisation of the Aruba Tourism Authority in 2011, Ronella Croes was appointed its first CEO.  Educated in Aruba and the Netherlands, Croes, worked in marketing for AHATA before being named director of tourism for the Tourism Corporation Bonaire. There she was successful in increasing airlift to the island from key international markets, achieved a record number of inbound arrivals with 17 per cent growth, and increased cruise tourism arrivals from 50,000 to 250,000 annually.

For the last decade-plus she has led ATA, building European markets in addition to its key US tourism base, and spearheading the post-Covid recovery.

Headshots taken at the Ritz-Carlton Aruba in 2021

Completing Aruba’s line-up of influential women, Sanju Luidens-Daryanani is the tourism authority’s chief marketing officer, a role she has held since 2011. Known for her innovative thinking and passion for the destination, Luidens-Daryanani is dedicated to raising the bar on the island’s tourism efforts year after year. She has more than 20 years of marketing, finance and tourism expertise to effectively lead Aruba’s local and international destination marketing units.

Headshots taken at the Ritz-Carlton Aruba in 2021

Her success as CMO is largely influenced by her previous role as advisor to Aruba’s Minister of Tourism, Transportation and Labour. In only one year, she led the project of privatising ATA from a government department to an independent entity within the public sphere. This new format has allowed ATA to thrive in a highly competitive market and continue to improve as a tourism product.


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