Who We Are

David Morgan

David Morgan

President Emeritus

David Morgan MBE TD is President Emeritus of the World Association of Tourist Trams and Trains(WATTRAIN).  He is a long serving director and past Chairman of the Heritage Railway Association (HRA), the voice of the railway heritage sector in Britain and Ireland. He is a long serving council member for European Federation of Museum and Tourist Railways (FEDECRAIL) and until April 2017 its President since its foundation in 1994.

David is currently Chairman of Great Central Railway Plc in Leicestershire, Vice- President of the West Somerset Railway, President of the North Norfolk Railway Plc having served on its Board of Directors from 1968 to 2010 and he is Vice-President of Severn Valley Railway.

His other interests include maritime heritage; he is Vice- Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Cutty Sark Trust and a Director of the Solent Steam (Ltd) which operates the World's largest preserved sea going steam ship, SS Shieldhall. He is also Deputy President of the Transport Trust, the UK's national charity for all forms of transport. He was awarded the MBE by the Queen for his services to the preservation of transport in Britain and Europe.

He is a retired lawyer based in London formerly a Consultant Solicitor to RadcliffesLeBrasseur and is a member of the Council of the Law Society of England and Wales, the profession's governing body.

He is married to Heather, with one daughter, Claire, and he is now a proud grandfather.

Stefano Benazzo

Stefano Benazzo

President

Born in 1949, Stefano has been a train enthusiast for many years.

He retired as an Italian Ambassador on December. 31, 2012.

He lives in Todi (Umbria, Italy).

He speaks English, French, Spanish and German.

His diplomatic experience includes serving at the Embassies of Italy in Bonn (1976-1980), Washington DC (1986-1989, 1996-2001), Moscow (1980-1983, 1989-1993).

He was Deputy Diplomatic Counsellor to the President of the Republic of Italy (2003-2004) and Inspector of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2004-2008).

He was appointed Ambassador of Italy to Belarus (2001-2003) and to Bulgaria (2008-2012).

He is an Artist: he currently works as a photographer, sculptor, architectural and naval modeller.

He has exhibited in twelve personal exhibitions, and participated in more than thirty collective exhibitions. His works have been published in many magazines and catalogues. He is organizing exhibitions in Italy and abroad.

He has been interested for decades in steam locos: collecting models, building train circuits and live steam model locos.

He is a Member of the Board of Directors of the World Association of Tourist Trams and Trains (WATTRAIN), Consultant for International Matters of the European Federation of Tourist and Museum Railways (FEDECRAIL), Member of the Italian Federation of Tourist and Museum Railways (FIFTM).

He is President of the Circolo Velico Tiberino sailing club on Lake Bracciano (near Rome), and Member of the club Società del Whist – Accademia Filarmonica in Torino.

He is Consultant for International Matters of the International Center for Cultural Co-operation.

Studies: Baccalaureate at the French Lycée Chateaubriand in Rome. Degree in Political Sciences at Rome University.

Military Experience: Lieutenant in the Italian Mountain Troops

Chris Le Marshall

Chris Le Marshall

Vice President

Chris Le Marshall is a Director of Linqage International, a strategic planning and business planning consultancy based in Australia. The firm works with a range of private and public sector clients within Australia and internationally. The firm has specific rail sector expertise having undertaken strategy work with the Australasian Railway Association, the Rail Industry Safety and Standards Board in Australia and the Co-operative Research Centre for Rail Innovation in areas related to urban transport, freight, light rail, operations, training, technology, interoperability and heritage rail. He is a founding Director of WATTRAIN, the World Association of Tourist Trams and Trains.

Experience:

1991 - Present time: Director of Language International.

2000 - Present time: Australasian Railway Association’s Tourism & Heritage Liaison Officer.

1990 - 1991: Senior Consultant, KPMG Peat Marwick Management Consultants, responsible for the management and delivery of international and local, public and private sector, strategy, corporate, business and market planning assignments.

1989 - 1990: Vice President and Director, Energetics Satellite Corporation, Denver, USA. Responsible for the initial set up of the company organisation, including all aspects of corporate planning, finance, marketing, technical development, aerospace insurance and government relations.

1970 - 1989: Served in the Royal Australian Navy, Executive Branch – Warfare – Principal Warfare Officer (Gunnery Officer), attaining the rank of Lieutenant Commander. During naval service exercised command of a number of warships.

Bob LaPrelle

Bob LaPrelle

Vice President

Robert (Bob) H. LaPrelle has been involved in museum administration and historic railway preservation for over 30 years. He has served as Chief Executive Officer of the Museum of the American Railroad in Dallas since 1988, building a strong, responsive organizational structure for the Museum that fulfills educational and cultural needs in the community. Under his leadership, the Museum has successfully transitioned from an informal seasonal operation to an important tourism destination and educational resource in North Texas.

Mr LaPrelle continues to place a priority on implementing professional standards for administration and operations, improving the Museum’s stature in the community through relevant programming, and increasing financial stability as a largely self-sustaining non-profit organization. He has developed strong ties with the railroad industry, North Texas business community, public agencies, and educational institutions.

Mr LaPrelle is passionate about conservation and preservation of the Museum’s extensive 50-year collection of historic railway rolling stock, landmark structures, and archival material. He has placed a high priority on their value as cultural assets in the community.

From 1999 to 2009 the Museum was included in the City of Dallas’ Cultural Arts Program, receiving endorsement and support from the Office of Cultural Affairs (OCA) – one of the few railroad museums in the nation receiving such funding for annual programming and events.

In 2009, the Museum entered into a development agreement with the City of Frisco (a suburb of Dallas) to relocate its collections and operations and become a much larger, more significant operation in the region. Mr LaPrelle successfully led the effort to complete Phase I construction of new facilities and move the Museum’s collection to Frisco in 2013. Working with the Museum’s board & staff, Frisco city officials, and community leaders, Mr LaPrelle is actively engaged in realizing the Museum’s long-term goal of becoming the premiere museum of transportation history & technology in the Southwest.

From 2009 to 2012, Mr LaPrelle served as President of the Association of Railway Museums (ARM), a North American trade organization comprised of over 200 railway museums, tourist lines, and vintage trolley operations. He led the 50-year-old association through a two-year merger process, creating the Association of Tourist Railroads and Railway Museum. He is a member of ATRRM's new board, leading efforts to advance public policy in the area of museum advocacy. LaPrelle also serves on the board of the World Association of Tourist Trams and Trains (WATTRAIN). The London-based international organization represents railway museums and tourist lines, setting standards and pursuing initiatives in support of historic railway preservation worldwide.

Mr LaPrelle was educated at the University of Texas at Austin's BA program, majoring in Government and Public Policy. His studies included management, collective bargaining, and extensive, original research at the LBJ Presidential Library Archives in the area of domestic programs benefiting urban renewal. He also holds two technical degrees from Dallas area community colleges. A native of Dallas, Texas, Mr LaPrelle currently resides with his family in the suburb of Richardson.

Gabriela Galizia

Gabriela Galizia

Director

Ms. Gabriela Galizia is a Certified English/Spanish Translator and Simultaneous Conference Interpreter.

Gabriela is the interpreter of virtual conferences between the authorities of WATTRAIN in Australia, England and Argentina. In addition to providing written translations of technical documents and institutional material for Mr. Quique Diaz, she has also assisted as a translator and interpreter during many specific meetings and conferences in Argentina and Latin America, such as discussions on technical engineering regarding steam locomotives that took place in Ecuador; or a meeting on steam engineering in Ushuaia, with the participation of British and South African specialists, regarding railway maintenance. Gabriela has also provided interpretation services and coordinated the bank of interpreters during the international convention in Ushuaia, in 2006.

Besides her experience in the railway sector, she has assisted in multiple national and international seminars and workshops held in Argentina, Latin America, USA and UK. Gabriela has worked as a Senior Lecturer at universities and educational institutions in Argentina and the USA.

She is the founder and Academic Director of Biltmore English Center, language center based in Mar del Plata, Argentina, her hometown.

She has provided a wide variety of public and technical-scientific translations and designed special training courses for the personnel and managerial staff of several corporations in the fishing, agro-industrial, engineering, medical, credit and collections, and retail sectors.

Rajesh Agrawal

Director

Over 15 years of Commitment/Expertise/Experience in World Heritage & Professional-Networking:-

  • Director, National Rail Museum (NRM) for about 5 years. Convened Apex Committee on India’s Rail Heritage. Successful in enhancing visitors, visibility and appreciation of NRM in India & abroad;
  • Executive Director (Heritage), in Indian Railways; for all matters related to its World Heritage Sites, Railway Museums across India, Steam locomotives, Rich Rail Heritage, Training, Conservation, Mountain Railways, Adaptive-reuse of heritage, Archives, formulation of guidelines, best practice for heritage and Technical / appropriate upgradation of narrow-gauge rolling stock etc.
  • World Heritage inscription formulated & coordinated for Darjeeling Railway (DHR), Mumbai CST, Nilgiri Railway (NMR) and Kalka Railway (KSR). Five other sites placed in UNESCO’s tentative list;
  • UNESCO’s fulltime Expert Consultant, for Conservation & Sustainable Development of Darjeeling Railway World Heritage Area in 2003 – 2004; in collaboration with UNDP and supported by several multi/bi-lateral bodies. Convened 3 international stakeholders workshops and released a publication on innovatively harnessing heritage as an economic resource and an integrated holistic multidisciplinary approach for conservation, management plan, environment (“heritage parks”), community (“SAHAYTA”), endogenous tourism, international best practice, replication and sustainability. Secretary Tourism, Govt. of India (Chair, National Standing Committee) noted that conservation has been addressed innovatively for comprehensive development. UNESCO’s Programme Officer/Culture noted that this is a multidisciplinary “Special Project” by way of harnessing heritage that is significant for win-win conservation & development. ICOMOS, noted that the DHR’s programme has set out aims far wider than envisaged, it takes the need to link tourism with villages along the lines and to see the buffer zone as an ecological zone. They also observed that this is seen as a model for the way other World Heritage Sites (WHS) could engage with local communities, noted that the WHS is seen as the focus of activities, it lays the groundwork for the planning and this process needs more support;
  • National/International Workshops/Conferences/Events convened successfully since 1998; for professional bodies such as UNESCO,UNDP,APHTRO,IATM,T2M,CII, CILT, WATTRAIN & MAI;
  • International Memberships of (worked on some of their committees & Board); such as APHTRO, CILT, ISRS & MAI and Old-ICOMOS, ICOM, IATM & CII. Also, extensive interaction with HRA, FedecRail, TRAINS & WATTRAIN and Smithsonian Institutions Expert partner in 2005-07;
  • UNESCO’s International Expert abroad - Padova (Italy) in 2002, Brienz (Switzerland) in 2003, Lahore (Pakistan) in 2005, Durban (South Africa) in 2005, Nara (Japan) in 2005, Ushuaia (Argentina) in 2006, Netherlands in 2007, Austria in 2008 & Spain in 2009.
  • Best presentation “Barker & Robbins” Prize in ‘07 for World Heritage Management from T2M.
  • Travel across India (stayed over one year in over 14 States) and worldwide in over 30 countries (North & South America, Europe, Middle-East, South-East Asia, Africa, & Oceania).
  • Fond of Professional Networking, Success stories, Management, Heritage, Culture, Travel, Tourism, inter-personal interaction, Photography, Indoor & Outdoor games, Computers & Internet.