FLIGHT Centre entrepreneur Graham Turner has spoken of the devastation he and his staff felt after learning of the murder of former employee Allison Baden-Clay.
Mr Turner, who also owns Spicers Hidden Vale resort at Grandchester, promoted Allison to a senior executive position in Flight Centre after she was recruited into the company in the mid-1990s.
"I remember Allison well," Mr Turner told The Queensland Times.
"She was one of our high achievers. She joined us in 1993 and she was a very bright spark.
"It was devastating to hear what happened to her.
"There are still people here who are friends with her and they are under
standably very upset."
Allison's magnificent life and terrible death touched many people from the time she was a bright young girl growing up in Ipswich.
She told The Queensland Times in 2000 her appetite for travel was whet as a 10-year-old at Redbank State School when she toured the UK, including the Edinburgh Festival, with the Australian Youth Ballet.
After going to Scandinavia on a Rotary exchange program, she graduated from the University of Queensland before starting as a consultant at Flight Centre in Brisbane.
Her success there resulted in her being appointed as manager of the Ipswich Flight Centre branch.
After being crowned Miss Brisbane and being named Ipswich Young Business Woman of the Year, she went back to Brisbane to take the role of Flight Centre's Queensland manager for human resources.
A year later, the then 27-year-old was promoted to global human resources manager, responsible for more than 3000 employees worldwide.
During this time, Allison met Gerard Baden-Clay. They married and after a honeymoon that turned into a working holiday, Flight Centre called them back to Australia, with Allison taking the role of staff recruiter and trainer and Gerard becoming assistant director.
Allison's funeral service will be held tomorrow in St Paul's Anglican Church in the Ipswich CBD.
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