Barbara Smith is one of Scotland’s most experienced leaders in the tourism and visitor attraction sector with over 30 years working in sport, leisure, tourism, culture and heritage and most recently in the wildlife charity sector.
She was appointed in late 2019 to lead Diageo’s Scotch whisky brand homes in Scotland, including the new Johnnie Walker Princes Street development and the company’s network of 12 distillery visitor centres across Scotland, including such famous distilleries as Lagavulin, Talisker, Cardhu and Dalwhinnie. She will also manage the new Port Ellen and Brora visitor experiences when those iconic lost distilleries are brought back into production under Diageo’s whisky investment programme.
Barbara joined Diageo from the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, where she was Chief Executive from 2016. Prior to that Barbara was Managing Director of Edinburgh Zoo from 2013 to 2016. Barbara was also Managing Director of Chester Zoo (2010 – 2013) and Executive Manager of Edinburgh Castle (2000 – 2010) – two of the UK’s most successful visitor attractions.