Gloria Guevara Manzo, Special Advisor on Government Affairs, provides strategic guidance to the Center on government and corporate engagement in its programs.
Gloria began her professional career at NCR Corporation in 1989 and worked in the IT industry in various roles, traveling to more than 20 countries throughout North America, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa.
Since 1995, Gloria has worked for the travel industry. She worked for Sabre Travel Network and Sabre Holding for 15 years in a variety of positions. She worked regionally within Latin America and the Caribbean, and later held global responsibilities as Vice President for Customer Solutions and Vendor Management. Gloria was also the CEO of Sabre Mexico, reporting to the board of directors of a joint venture between Aeromexico, Mexicana, and Sabre Holdings.
During Gloria’s time in the private sector, CNN Expansion recognized her as one of the most influential women in Mexico.
In March 2010, President Calderon appointed Gloria as the Secretary of Tourism, a cabinet position that leads a sector that contributes to 9% of Mexico’s GDP and employs 2.5 million people directly. Two weeks after her appointment, she was also given the responsibility of overseeing the Mexico Tourism Board, where she repositioned the image of Mexico during economic, public health, and national security crises.
Under her leadership in this important Secretariat, the National Agreement for Tourism was created and signed in 2011. The agreement was an unprecedented initiative with a key strategic plan for the country that aligned the entire sector and the federal government; all governors and Mexican states; congress; senators; unions; academia; and representatives from the private sector, including associations and chambers. This national agreement created the strong foundation in tourism that Mexico needed for strong growth, and has been used as a model for other countries and as an example by United Nations World Tourism. She worked concurrently to reposition Mexico by launching its rebranding and PR campaign.
Despite the impact of what some experts consider the “perfect storm”—a financial and economic crisis, the outbreak of H1N1 flu, and challenges Mexico faced in security—under Gloria´s leadership, Mexico was able to turn its decline in tourism to positive growth wihtin two years. From 2010-12, Mexico broke a new record with more than 200 million domestic and international travelers. Gloria’s ability to manage the crisis helped to position Mexico as a leading destination and became a model to follow.
During her tenure as Secretary of Tourism, Mexico hosted high-profile travel events, including the Ministerial T20, which included the heads of tourism from the top 20 economies, the World Travel and Tourism Council, leaders from the private industry, and the UNWTO executive council.
In 2012, due the hard work and collaboration between international organizations, and in large part due to her leadership, travel and tourism and its contribution to the economic growth of nations was included in the G20 leaders’ declaration of los Cabos Mexico for the first time in history. This was a milestone for the industry, and gave Gloria recognition as a G20 pioneer.
Gloria received the Good Neighbor Award from the U.S.–Mexico Chamber of Commerce in 2012, and Virtuoso named the Mexico Tourism board as the best in the world the same year, due Gloria’s efforts to lead Mexico’s brand repositioning. The UNWTO also recognized Gloria as a global leader and key contributor to the tourism industry.
Currently she is a contributor to the World Economic Forum and part of the World Tourism Think Tank. She speaks at industry events and also offers consulting services to a variety of countries and destinations around the world.
She holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Anahuac University and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Business at Northwestern University