Aisling Arnold, General Manager of Arnolds Hotel in Dunfanaghy, has been elected Chair of the Donegal Branch of the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF).

A fourth-generation hotelier and member of the IHF’s National Council, Aisling brings extensive experience to the role of Branch Chair. Having been actively involved in the running of Arnolds Hotel since 2013, Aisling took over the role of General Manager in 2016. She previously worked as a Chartered Accountant with Deloitte and has acted as a consultant on a number of privately owned businesses and for clients of the Local Enterprise Office in Donegal. Aisling is a graduate of Ulster University and ATU Donegal.

Aisling Arnold, New Chair of Irish Hotels Federation, Donegal. Photo Clive Wasson

Commenting on her election as Branch Chair, Aisling says: “It is a great honour to have been elected Chair of the Donegal Branch of the Irish Hotels Federation. Hotels and guesthouses throughout Donegal make such a vital contribution to local tourism and our wider economy. I look forward to representing them and working closely with my Donegal Branch colleagues Niall Coffey and Carolynne Murray as we engage with Government and industry partners to address the challenges, we face head-on. A particular concern for our sector is the very high cost of doing business within our industry. This requires swift action from the Government.

“On behalf of my colleagues and fellow hoteliers throughout Donegal, I wish to acknowledge and thank Paul Diver for his leadership and the immense commitment he has demonstrated throughout his tenure as Branch Chair. During this time, he has provided a strong voice for local hotels, advocating on behalf of our sector and wider tourism industry.”

Former Donegal Branch Chair Paul Diver says: “I am delighted to hand over the Chair of the Donegal branch of the Irish Hotels Federation to Aisling Arnold. Aisling is steeped in the hotel industry, and her parents were both very involved in the branch over many years. We have been through a number of very tough seasons, but working together we managed to make the county a must visit destination for a huge number of domestic travellers. We have some of the best tourism product here in Donegal, and I look forward to working with Aisling who will be well assisted by Branch Officers Carolynne Murray and Niall Coffey.”

IHF President Michael Magner says: “I want to congratulate Aisling on her election. Her commitment to our sector and extensive experience are a tremendous asset to the IHF as we continue to advocate for members at the highest levels of Government. As Ireland’s largest indigenous employer, tourism plays a vital role supporting over 270,000 livelihoods including some 8,000 jobs throughout Donegal. It is therefore critical that the right conditions are in place to deliver a sustained recovery for our sector so that our wider tourism industry lives up to its full potential. I look forward to working with Aisling during her term to deliver our key priorities in relation to economic growth, leadership in sustainability and supporting people development within our sector.”