THE SPIRIT OF SPEYSIDE whisky festival is under way in their planning for 2016 – and to that end this week made two key appointments.
Pery Zakeri – who has held the post of festival administrator – is to take on a new role as festival manager, while Mark Angus, a key member of whisky merchants Gordon & MacPhail, has joined the board of directors.
Pery’s new role will see her taken on additional responsibilities in organise the Spirit of Speyside which is one of the largest events of its type in the world. Mark, meanwhile, brings his experience in the retail sector as well as first-hand knowledge of running festival events.
James Campbell, chairman of the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, said: “These are fantastic appointments as both Pery and Mark have excellent experience that will only enhance the festival in years to come.
“The Spirit of Speyside is already renowned as one of the best events of its kind anywhere in the world, and we have every confidence in Pery and Mark helping to further build its reputation, alongside other members of the board.
“We all want to work together to raise the bar even higher on the quality of the festival experience, ensuring that visitors – who come from as far afield as the USA, South America and Australia – have an unforgettable time here with us on Speyside celebrating our national drink.”
Pery, who has worked with the Spirit of Speyside since 2014, said: “This past year has been one of the most amazing periods of my career, and I am very much looking forward to working with the board and ensuring the festival continues to be one of the leading events of its kind.
“The festival has unlimited potential to put the region on the map with visitors at both home and abroad, and its importance to the local economy cannot be underestimated.”
Mark, who brings 32 years of experience in the retail sector including the past seven with Gordon & MacPhail at the company’s historic flagship store in Elgin, commented on his appointment: “As a festival events provider I am only too well aware of the popularity of the festival and its international appeal.
“Gordon & MacPhail’s retail shop is never busier than at festival time, and it is a pleasure to see the impact the event makes on the local community.
“I am eager to get started and add my own knowledge and experience to the Board, and work with my fellow directors to help ensure the Spirit of Speyside Festival becomes even bigger, better and stronger than it has been in the past.”