GBTA CEO Solombrino Insults Colorado’s Governor, Tells Staff They’ll Be Fired If They Publicly Discuss Apparently Foiled November Convention Plan

Readers, please note our Disclosure about conflicts of interest at the bottom of this article.

Amid dwindling chances of holding this year’s Global Business Travel Association convention in Denver after it was rescheduled from August to November due to the pandemic, GBTA CEO Scott Solombrino lashed out at the governor of Colorado in a rambling and boastful June 7 staff email.

“Our biggest win was convincing Denver to give us the November dates,” Solombrino wrote, referencing the rescheduling plan GBTA announced April 7. “I actually had a virtual cocktail party with board . . .

The full content is available to subscribers

Jay Campbell

Author: Jay Campbell

Jay Campbell in 2004 created travel business newsletter The Beat, in 2006 co-founded Travel Procurement magazine and in 2010 integrated them with Business Travel News. He served as editorial director until 2013. Jay made his travel industry media debut in 1993 at the Air Travel Journal of Boston while earning his undergraduate degree in journalism at Boston University.

20
Comments

avatar
10 Comment threads
10 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
17 Comment authors
Alison GuilbeauxJohn PackelTerry RyanDebbie McKayTerry Rockell Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
Notify of
Holly Hegeman
Subscriber
Holly Hegeman

So raise your hand if anything in this article is a surprise. I thought so. I also thought it was rather God-like of GBTA, or at least totally tone deaf, to issue an email today with the headline “Time to Resume Global Travel, says GBTA.” Oh really? Says who? Or does one of us need to send Scott the latest COVID-19 infection and hospitalization rates for the U.S. as of today? Such an attitude. I am amazed and saddened that this organization still has the corporate travel industry under its thumb. It could do so much better.

Ann Dery
Subscriber
Ann Dery

Well Jay and David, if I wasn’t already feeling dismayed enough by the impact of the pandemic on the business travel industry, the article on Solombrino and his antics did the trick! I have thought for years that the GBTA organization had seen its better days, and lacked true leadership at the very top for years e.g. integrity, transparency, intelligence, respect for all constituents, professionalism, appreciation for all the volunteer efforts, collaboration, etc. This article clearly confirms my impressions, and I am disgusted. Solombrino seems to have taken a number of pages out of our President’s playbook with his pure… Read more »

Madia Sargent
Subscriber
Madia Sargent

Ann, you are spot on. Thanks for having the courage to speak the truth. I’m in complete agreement.

Kelly Christner
Subscriber
Kelly Christner

Well said Ann!

Terry Rockell
Guest
Terry Rockell

So, so true. GBTA is no longer something to be proud of!

William Newman
Guest
William Newman

The GBTA Board of Directors needs to act swiftly and terminate Mr. Solombrino for cause.

Lisa Simpkins
Subscriber
Lisa Simpkins

Yes!

Lisa Simpkins
Subscriber
Lisa Simpkins

How disgraceful is this! GBTA BOD needs to step down as well. What is it with GBTA and Colorado, they came after our Chapter and now insult the Governor of Colorado! The convention center is going to be a hospital until January, most have known this for a while like it’s some secret! #peoplebeforeprofits is his motto! I am ashamed to be associated with GBTA, where’s the diversity and inclusion here? This “crazy broad” has had it with him and the BOD of GBTA! And their needs to be a complete Audit of all of GBTA’s records!

Kelly Christner
Subscriber
Kelly Christner

Amen to that!

Laura Melish
Guest
Laura Melish

I could not agree more. We should vote for the CEO and have a say.

Debbie McKay
Subscriber

Well said, Lisa! The board (currently and previously) is complacent and should all resign as well.
A total “house cleaning” needs to be demanded!

Kelly Christner
Subscriber
Kelly Christner

One word: “covfefe“ Many Numbers: Emails from GBTA Executive Director and apparently newly self-appointed dictator: 1 Words in the aforementioned email (inclusive of those which are two words yet should be one): 1556 Personal and Possessive pronouns: I: 49 my: 21 me: 5 Solecisms (aka errors including grammar, spelling, homophones, malapropisms, punctuation, sentence structure, and capitalization): 20 Possible “media powerhouse” coup d’etat?: 1 in “over 400 candidates”? (Still cannot figure that one out) Agendas which did not line up with E.D. autocratic thought process: “Too many” Egomaniacal self-proclaimed dragger of kicking and screaming board members: 1 “Legal discussions behind the… Read more »

Richard D'Ambrosio
Guest
Richard D'Ambrosio

Kelly Christner, This is an absolutely priceless, pitch perfect comment. Thank you for taking the time to write it.

Sheila Kittle
Subscriber
Sheila Kittle

This is the beginning of the end for GBTA. But we all saw it coming.

Don Mahnke
Subscriber
Don Mahnke

For the future of GBTA, Scott should resign as soon as possible. He acted the same way in the transportation industry, as a dictator and a narcissist he needs to be terminated as soon as possible.

Michelle Hunt
Subscriber
Michelle Hunt

And what about the sponsors on the GBTA board who have not spoken out against this? By being silent, they are also complicit with his actions. Raise your concerns to suppliers who are on the board to speak up.

Jeff Daily
Subscriber
Jeff Daily

I agree with you Michelle

Alison Guilbeaux
Subscriber
Alison Guilbeaux

I agree!

Terry Ryan
Subscriber
Terry Ryan

As long as this man is involved in GBTA, I will not support it

John Packel
Subscriber
John Packel

What an embarrassment. Business travel is already backward enough in terms of technology and business models (something many of us are risking human and other capital to change), and this kind of crap just exacerbates it. Hopefully he won’t be polluting the business travel environment much longer.