Okanagan Edge and the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce are partnering to showcase some of the region’s most exciting entrepreneurs through the “Top 40 Over 40” program.
Sponsored by BDO, the “Top 40 Over 40” recognizes high-achieving professionals in our community and showcases their accomplishments. This marks the fifth year the chamber has conducted a “Top 40” showcase. Honourees will be featured throughout the year on Okanagan Edge.
Today we recognize Ingrid Dilschneider, the travel trade and digital marketing specialist with Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association.
It should come as no surprise that Ingrid Dilschneider ended up in the hospitality business.
Both her mom and dad worked for airlines, and therefore trips were plentiful when she was a child. She distinctly remembers going to Denmark, where her father was born, and to Antigua, where she learned just how beautiful the tropics can be.
“That was when I knew I had to pursue that (career),” she said. “My sister ended up being a flight attendant, and I took the marketing route.”
Dilschneider, who currently serves as a travel trade and digital marketing specialist with Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association, has been named to Kelowna Chamber of Commerce’s Top 40 Over 40 list, presented by BDO.
“It’s a huge honour to be on that list,” Dilschneider said. “It was surprising. It’s nice to be recognized by your peers. I’m humbled at the same time.”
Dilschneider, who was born and raised in Montreal, started in the travel and marketing business working for Wardair, a private Canadian airline that was founded in 1952 but ceased operations in 1989. Dilschneider was based in Jamaica, where she handled passengers and their hotel accommodations.
Her heart took her to Calgary, where she continued to work in the hotel industry as a sales and marketing director, and it wasn’t long before she ended up in the Okanagan, where she was employed in the wine and golf industry. She worked at Predator Ridge for eight years before starting her own company, Matrix Marketing, two years ago and then joining TOTA last year.
“I love dealing with the international trade and trying to influence them to use our region,” Dilschneider said. “We’re seeing great strides, and it’s great to be part of the biosphere and the sustainable destination. Leading the charge with that has been a huge learning curve and a great experience.”
Her 35 years in the marketing industry has kept her busy enough, but Dilschneider always found the time to give some of her free time to organizations. She served as the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce vice-president, Vernon Tourism Council chair and as a director for the Tourism Association of BC.
She has also taken time to mentor 10 young professionals—and counting—who were just getting started in their marketing careers.
“I was always on boards or always chairing councils or always trying to expand my knowledge and expand my network,” Dilschneider said.
“It was just really important for me to contribute and to help in any way I can. And I’m still that way today.”
When she’s not knee deep in marketing, Dilschneider, who has eight tattoos—and counting—loves to play golf and go to car shows.
“I go to most of the shows,” she said. “I have a Camaro convertible that I treated myself to two years ago. It’s my baby. And my dog is my passion. Of course, sometimes my husband thinks the dog takes priority. We still travel quite a bit, so that’s nice, and I’m a huge yoga enthusiast, too. That also keeps me sane.”
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