Board of Trustees

Brian Robb Headshot 2015Brian D. Robb – Chairman
Founder and Principal, Robb Aspect

Brian Robb is founder and principal of Robb Aspect located in southeast Wisconsin. He joined The Travel Institute Board of Trustees in 2005 and was appointed vice chair in 2010. He became chairman in October 2015.

With a travel industry career spanning nearly 40 years, Robb has worked as an agency manager as well as sales manager for an airline, has operated tour companies and led in the creation of travel technology systems. This broad background has continually focused on leading efforts to grow and develop the effectiveness and success of travel agencies and their travel supplier partners.

Prior to forming Robb Aspect, he was senior vice president at the Mark Travel Corporation and Trisept Solutions, where he most recently worked to advance VAX VacationAccess, a product that he helped define, develop and launch in 1999. Robb also spent 12 years at Carlson Travel Group where he was global vice president of marketing, managing an annual budget of over $12 million dollars. Leading up to his role at Carlson, he was an airline sales manager and general manager of the travel agency, Nordic America Travel with offices in Minneapolis, Oslo, and Stockholm.

Robb has served on several industry advisory boards, including Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Gaylord Entertainment Company, Hawaii Tourism, and TravelCom. A frequent keynote speaker, Robb has addressed issues ranging from travel technology and strategy development to agent-supplier relations. He has also lectured at Cornell School of Hotel Administration where he reinforced the role of travel agents and tour operators in hotel yield management.

A native of Minnesota, Robb resides in Wisconsin with his wife Kris. They are the proud parents of two daughters and a horse. A firm believer in pursuing your passions, his interests include continuing education, the fine arts, an occasional round of golf.

Gary Pollard HeadshotGary Pollard, CTC – Vice-Chairman
President, Ambassador Tours

Gary M. Pollard is President of Ambassador Tours in San Francisco. Founded by his parents, Stan and Leone Pollard, in 1955, Ambassador Tours is a full-service travel agency specializing in affordable vacation travel to all parts of the world.

Gary knew at an early age that he wanted to be part of the family business. So, after a couple of years of college, he joined the business and the folks made sure he started at the bottom – in the mail room – where he coordinated the mailing of cruise and tour brochures. Not long after, Gary graduated from Echols International Travel School.

In the ensuing years, Gary held a wide variety of jobs of increasing responsibility, covering all aspects of the business and eventually taking over the daily operations of the business with his brother, Bruce Pollard, in 1995. Finally, in 2003, his parents officially turned the reins of the company over to him, appointing him President, with overall accountability for Sales, Marketing and Operations. Now, more than 50 years after its inception, Ambassador Tours remains a leader in the travel industry, working hard to offer the best prices, best service and the best possible vacation for every travel interest.

Gary has served on advisory boards for Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruise Line, Crystal Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, and currently serves on the advisory boards for Cruise Line International Association (CLIA) and Club Med. Gary is also actively involved in his community, serving as Board President of the Foster City Youth Baseball Association, President of the San Mateo High School Athletic Boosters, and a Committee Member of the Foster City Park and Recreation Citizen Advisory Committee, and past President of Peninsula Temple Sholom. Gary earned his CTC in 1988 and became a life member in 1989.

Gary has sailed on more than 40 ships. He resides in Foster City with his wife, Chris, and their two sons, Bryan and Marcus.