05 Jan Reflections from Internova Travel Group Chairman on the Passing of Sandals Founder, the Honorable Gordon “Butch” Stewart, OJ, CD, Hon. LLD
“Butch” was a remarkable and innovative leader with tremendous energy and vision, and a lifelong champion for travel advisors. We formed an alliance with Sandals more than a decade ago, and Butch became like family to us. Working closely together, he was always an enormous source of inspiration and positivity.
When it came to extraordinary accomplishments, Butch had many, but we will always remember his larger-than-life personality, his incredible enthusiasm, his down to earth demeanor, and his exceptional ability to make everyone around him feel loved and special. He was destined to be a great leader in hospitality, and he leaves an incredible legacy in Sandals, for which we are all grateful.
During the past few months, I had the pleasure and honor of speaking with Butch a number of times. He was full of energy, optimism, kindness, and wisdom, and after each call, I came away feeling totally uplifted, despite the problems that we all currently face.
I first met him over 30 years ago and watched him build Sandals into the great business it is today while at the same time steadfastly supporting the travel agency community. He never wavered in his support, and on behalf of all of us, thank you, Butch. I feel privileged to have called you my friend and we will all miss you.
Our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and loved ones of the Honorable Gordon “Butch” Stewart, OJ, CD, Hon. LLD.
–Mike Batt, Founder and Chairman of Internova Travel Group