Mark McGowan has been elected president of the Restaurants Association of Ireland. Mark, along with his family, own and operate Scholars Townhouse Hotel. He grew up in his family pub, McGowans of Phibsboro, which instilled in him a passion for tourism and hospitality.
Mark hopes to continue the work of his predecessors on issues and concerns for the tourism and hospitality sector.
He says : "We must continue to upskill the workforce to alleviate the shortage of skilled staff, both front and back of house and the association will continue to advocate for the adoption of nutritional education on the primary school syllabus. We must also see a change to the VAT rate, with restarants closing at a rate of one per week we will seek a reduction in the VAT rate to 11 per cent to stabalise our sector and ensure we are competitive on an international level in light of Brexit.
He adds: "It is an honor and privilege to be elected president of this organisation. I have been on the council for over five years; I have spent a lot of time discussing and debating with my council colleagues over various issues that we have been faced with. I would like to express my gratitude to my wife, Andrea, and my family for their unconditional support and I will do my very best to ensure there is progress within the sector.