Angel Castellanos, (www.AngelsTravelLounge.com) is a passionate world traveler, travel writer, influencer, multi-media personality and nationally recognized speaker dedicated to helping people travel smart, well and often. Traveling to over 75 countries on 5 continents (and counting), Angel travels 12-14 weeks internationally each year and draws on his experience and frequent travels to teach “Smart Travel” and equip travelers with the skills they need to make travel easy and enjoyable. He bridges the gap between the practical, common sense advice he’s learned by traveling the world and the new savvy tips and experiences that have helped his generation revolutionize travel. Angel has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Fox News, Univision, Frommers Radio, USA Today & Travel & Adventure Show as “America’s Newest Travel Expert”.
Editorial Director of the Frommer’s Guides & Publisher of Frommers.com
Pauline Frommer is co-President of Frommer Media, LLC, with her father, travel legend Arthur Frommer. Together, they publish America’s most popular series of travel guidebooks, the Frommer guides, as well as Frommers.com, a website that welcomes more than 3 million unique users per month. She is also a nationally syndicated radio talk show host, and she pens an internationally syndicated newspaper column on travel for King Features. You may recognize her face as Pauline created weekly travel segments for CNN’s Headline News for 3 years. She’s also appeared on The Today Show, Good Morning America, NPR’s Marketplace and Talk of the Nation, CNN, FOX, MSNBC and every local news station you can name. She was the founding editor of Frommers.com and edited MSNBC.com’s travel section for two years. Pauline is the proud mother of two well-traveled daughters and wife to Columbia University professor Mahlon Stewart.
Emmy Award-Winning Investigative Reporter and Producer and CBS News Travel Editor
A multiple Emmy Award-winning investigative reporter and producer, Peter Greenberg is Americaʼs most recognized, honored and respected front-line travel news journalist. Known in the industry as “The Travel Detective,” he is the travel editor for CBS News, appearing on CBS This Morning, CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley, and Sunday Morning, among other broadcast platforms.
The consummate insider on reporting the travel business as news, Greenberg hosts the television show, “The Travel Detective with Peter Greenberg,” airing on Public Television. The series offers 42 half-hour episodes with cutting-edge travel information and insider tips you need to know before you ever leave home, plus in-depth reports on the good, bad, and yes, even ugly aspects of travel.
Greenberg also produces and co-hosts an ongoing series of acclaimed public television specials, “The Royal Tour,” featuring personal, one-on-one journeys through countries with their heads of state. Along with such figures as the King of Jordan, Prime Minister of Israel, Prime Minister of New Zealand and presidents of Mexico and Peru, Greenberg’s newest special features the president of Rwanda, Paul Kagame.
Among other television projects, Greenberg is creator, co-executive producer and host of CNBCʼs specials “Inside American Airlines: A Week in the Life” and “Cruise Inc: Big Money on the High Seas,” and is co-executive producer of “Baggage Battles,” airing on the Travel Channel, and The History Channelʼs two-hour special “Lost Magic.” On radio he hosts the nationally syndicated show “Peter Greenberg Worldwide,” broadcast each week from a different remote location worldwide, and is heard on hundreds of radio stations across the U.S.
Greenberg is also author of The New York Times best-selling Travel Detective series. His most recent book, The Best Places for Everything, comes in the wake of such titles as Donʼt Go There! and The Complete Travel Detective Bible. Currently editor at large of Global Business Travel magazine and a contributing writer to Watch, he has also been a featured guest on CNN, “The OʼReilly Factor,” “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” and “The View.”
Travel Weekly named him one of the most influential people in travel, along with Bill Marriott and Richard Branson. In 2012, he was inducted into the U.S. Travel Associationʼs Hall of Leaders for his contributions to the travel industry. Among his other honors, Greenberg received a News & Documentary Emmy Award as part of the “Dateline” team for outstanding coverage of a breaking news story, “Miracle on the Hudson.”
He began his career in journalism as West Coast correspondent for Newsweek in Los Angeles and San Francisco. He won a national Emmy Award (Best Investigative Reporting) for his ABC “20/20” special on the final orphan flight out of Vietnam, “What Happened to the Children?” He also is the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin, and an Excellence in Broadcasting Award from the Aviation Space Writers Association of America.
Greenberg is a sought-after expert speaker and moderator. He is a keynote speaker at annual summits for the World Travel and Tourism Council, the Global Business Travel Association and Virtuoso. He is also one of the chief moderators at the World Economic Forum and the Global Tourism Economic Forum. Along with a recent TED talk, he is a guest speaker at events which have been hosted by Visa, Bloomberg, AARP and numerous other B2B and B2C organizations.
His website, PeterGreenberg.com, is one of the leading travel news resources for consumers and industry insiders alike. When he is not traveling the globe, Greenberg also serves as an active volunteer firefighter in New York.
Once feeling unable to afford to travel, Russell Hannon uses lean principles to travel at a fraction of the going rate. He has been on CNBC, FOX, CBS, America Tonight, the Huffington Post, Around the World Travel TV and nationally broadcast lifestyle and personal finance shows. Russell has worked as a CBC Budget Travel Columnist, is the founder of breakthetravelbarrier.com and is the author of ‘Stop Dreaming Start Traveling: The Ultimate Guide to Traveling More and Spending Less.’
Founder & CEO, RewardStock
Jon Hayes is the Founder and CEO of RewardStock.com, a new reward travel planning and booking site. A first-time entrepreneur, Jon was previously an investment banker on Wall Street, working in the Mergers & Acquisitions group at Citi, where he advised companies across a broad range of industries. Prior to investment banking, Jon graduated from Princeton University with a major in Economics and a certificate in Spanish Language. Jon recently appeared on the popular ABC TV show ‘Shark Tank’, where he secured an investment from billionaire Mark Cuban. Jon and his wife Alison live in Raleigh, North Carolina with their two daughters, Elizabeth and Talia.
Rosalie De Los Hoyos
Business Development, MSC Cruises
I have been working with MSC Cruises for 10 + years as Business Development, Sales Support, Customer Service. I am currently manage travel agency sales of Texas, California, Hawaii, Alaska, Guam. I accept extensive travel for the company while maintaining my position in the Fort Lauderdale office in Business Development/Sales Support. I have exceeded bonus goals and annual reviews and top in sales in my sales department. My previous travel industry experience has been in the travel agency ownership for 25+ years. I have always kept myself involved in the community organizations in the Greater Fort Lauderdale area. My passion has always been Hospitality and Tourism and Travel management operations.
I love the renaissance of cruising experience and not the old thoughts of cruising as feasts and floating to a port. It is now all about the trends of wellness “Eat the chefs special plates and drink “de novo” wine blends you create from the beginning – Pray/Meditate the day in a mantra of mindful views of the majestic seas and Love life as an early bucket list option for a minimal cost”
Johnny Jet has traveled over 100,000 miles a year since starting his newsletter in 1995 and has visited close to 100 countries. On his website, he writes about how to maximize your credit card points, how to find travel deals, cheap flights, and how to benefit from insightful travel tips. He has hosted a television special on The Travel Channel and was named one of Forbes’ Top 10 Travel Influencers. He writes for numerous publications including Forbes, Inc and Alaska Airlines in-flight magazine and appears every Saturday on Leo Laporte’s The Tech Guy Show talking about travel and technology. He travels the world with his wife Natalie DiScala and their son Jack. Be sure to sign up for his free newsletter.
Host/Co-Executive Producer The Amazing Race and Author, No Opportunity Wasted
Phil is the host and co-executive producer of CBS’ multi-Emmy Award-winning reality series THE AMAZING RACE and the host of NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC EXPLORER. He is arguably the most traveled host on the planet.
Born in New Zealand, Keoghan has experienced a life full of travel and adventure. After he started traveling around the world at the age of 2, he has been globetrotting ever since.
Surviving a near-death experience at the age of 19, Keoghan wrote a list of things to do before he died and created a BUCKiT Tick-it Before You Kick-it! philosophy which he turned into a best selling book called, No Opportunity Wasted. He is now a regular motivational speaker at colleges and Fortune 500 companies around the world.
Visiting more than 100 countries Phil has been sharing his stories in front of a TV camera for almost 30 years. His adventures include riding his bicycle from LA to New York; having a five-star meal on top of an erupting volcano of Stromboli; breaking an unofficial world record bungy jump; putting a golf ball across Scotland; changing a light bulb on top of the Verrazano Bridge; diving the world’s longest underwater caves and swimming from Asia to Europe across the Bosporus.
Keoghan’s most daring challenge to date involved retracing the exact route of 1928 Tour de France, riding an original heavy steel vintage bicycle that had no gears. Riding an average of 150 miles a day for 26 days he shot an award winning documentary with his wife and producing partner Louise, called Le Ride to tell the forgotten ‘underdog’ story about the first English speaking team to take on the toughest sporting event on earth. Le Ride screened at SXSW and was selected as Opening Night and Festival Favorite Film at a number of festivals around the world.
As a philanthropist Keoghan has raised over 1 million dollars for his favorite charity MS and was in the world’s top 200 Most Influential Philanthropists and Social Entrepreneurs in 2017.
Keoghan’s work has earned him numerous awards including: ten prime-time Emmy Awards as a producer and host of the hit CBS series The Amazing Race; Best Director Award, at the 2017 American Documentary Film Festival; the 2018 Sports Documentarian Award from the International Sports Hall of Fame; a World Class New Zealand Award; The Dorothy Corwin Spirit of Life award for services to MS; a 2012 Sir Peter Blake Leadership Award and the Endurance Live, Celebrity Athlete of the Year in 2013. Keoghan was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the 2014 for his services to television and tourism.
Phil lives in Los Angeles with his wife and producing partner, and their daughter.
Ruth Rosewarne Kimerer
Tourism Development and Sales Manager, Visit Anchorage
Ruth Rosewarne Kimerer – Ruth moved to Alaska in 1993 to work a summer job at a road house on the Kenai Peninsula. The minute she saw the Turnagain Arm, she knew she was never leaving. She moved to Girdwood, Alaska to be a snowboard bum for a winter and instead became a marketer at Alaska’s premier year-round resort, Alyeska Resort which started her long career in Alaska tourism. With a move to Anchorage came a job with the mighty Alaska Railroad Sales and Marketing where Ruth learned the ins and outs of the railbelt, as far south as Seward, as far north as Fairbanks and everything in between. Now at Visit Anchorage, Ruth loves her adopted home and everything about it. Ask her anything and the response will be full of knowledge and passion for the great state of Alaska and Anchorage!
PR Executive of the Tourism Authority of Thailand – Los Angeles
Candy is a member of the marketing and PR team of TAT-LA. As a Los Angeles native, she embraces her Thai-American identity and is compelled to showcase Thailand through a different lens that strays away from the common bustle, and to tranquil and unknown.
Host of Booze Traveler on Travel Channel
A professional actor and adventurer, Jack Maxwell has learned his best lessons, stories and lighthearted jokes in the barrooms of South Boston. He has made guest appearances on hit broadcast television shows such as 24, Lost, Without a Trace and Beverly Hills 90210. Maxwell became a lifetime member of the Actors Studio in 2003, won Best Actor in a Lead Role at the 2012 Pan Pacific Film Festival and was presented with both the Emerald Star and Golden Halo award from the Southern California Motion Picture Council. Additionally, he has shared stage time with Al Pacino and Jessica Chastain in Oscar Wilde’s Salome, as well as the movie, Wilde Salome, about the making of the play.
At a young age, Maxwell made himself an entrepreneur by shining shoes in neighborhood pubs and gin mills, where he would listen to the boozy tales that echoed from above him. This early experience awakened his awareness of alcohol’s magical socializing effect.
In Travel Channel’s original series Booze Traveler, Maxwell ventures the globe to not only get a taste of a country’s alcohol, but to quench his curiosity about what people drink, why they drink it and the stories they tell when they do. At each stop, he connects with locals, immerses himself in regional activities, learns about the country’s unique relationship with liquor and sometimes even participates in the alcohol-making process.
Podcast: I Dont Drink Alone
Available on my website and iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher and Tune In.
Award-winning travel writer, actor, and director
Andrew speaks about his personal journey and how travel and self-reflection changed his life. Aside from his successful acting and directing careers, he is now a successful writer and editor at large for National Geographic Traveler. He discusses fear of the unknown, taking the time to enjoy the precious moments in life, pushing yourself to try new things, and looking at the world with new eyes. Best known for his acting career and starring roles in St. Elmo’s Fire, Pretty in Pink, Mannequin, and Weekend at Bernie’s, he has a successful Broadway career and is currently a highly regarded director. Current projects include hit series’ Orange is the New Black, Turn, and The Blacklist. He returned to acting in ABC’s 2016 hit, The Family. His debut novel for young readers, Just Fly Away was published in March 2017.
Communications Manager, Tahiti Tourisme US
Noel is the Communications Manager at Tahiti Tourisme United States (TTUS), where she manages media relations, online communications, and social media.
Noel has more than a decade of experience in managing Communications and PR for Yosemite National Park, first in conservation with Yosemite Conservancy and later managing the marketing and advertising, public relations, and online communications for Yosemite / Mariposa County Tourism Bureau.
In her role she has worked closely with federal, state and local government agencies and destination marketing organizations (DMOs), spanning all aspects of the Tourism and Hospitality industry, working closely with Visit California and BrandUSA. She has extensive experience with large-scale branding and marketing campaigns, crisis communications, and acting as a destination spokesperson. She holds a bachelor’s degree from University of California, Davis.
Her role with The Islands of Tahiti brings together her two passions: a love of travel and exploration, with a sincere desire to conserve, protect, and promote with world’s most beautiful natural treasures.
Sales & Marketing Manager STS North America
Martin joined Switzerland Tourism in NYC in 2018. He represents the Swiss Travel System, which means traveling by rail, bus and boat – the best way to discover Switzerland.
Before that he was living in a mountain resort in the Swiss alps for all of his life. He has climbed some iconic peaks such as Jungfrau, Monte Rosa and Piz Bernina. Therefore he knows his homecountry mostly from above. Mountaineering, hiking, biking, canoeing and camping are his hobbies. As a passionate backcountry skier he has also skied a fair amount of off piste in Colorado’s Rockies, Utah’s Wasatch range, California’s Sierra Nevada or Oregons Cascade volcanoes, which since living over here are his preferred playgrounds now.
Owner, Celebration Senior Travel
Debra Saxon, Owner, Celebration Senior Travel, Celebration Magazine. Debra started her career working with seniors as an Activities Director at an independent retirement community in 2004. Almost immediately, Debra realized that there was a need for a publication for seniors that focuses on “Celebrating Life After 60!”. Celebration Magazine became a reality in the Spring of 2011 and in August of 2014, with the help of her husband Greg, Debra opened Celebration Senior Travel; a group travel service for active adults and seniors who still want to travel but not the hassle and work that goes along with the planning. At Celebration Senior Travel our motto is: “We do the work… And You Have the Fun!” Life really is full of surprises and your dreams can come true if you work hard and believe. Debra always tells her son, Jake… “You can do anything you want to, if you just want it bad enough.” She lives by those words every day.
Bestselling Author, 1,000 Places to See Before You Die and 1,000 Places to See in The USA & Canada Before You Die
Patricia Schultz is the author of the #1 New York Times bestsellers 1,000 Places to See Before You Die and 1,000 Places to See in the United States and Canada Before You Die. A veteran travel journalist with over 30 years of experience, she has written for guides such as Frommer’s and Berlitz and periodicals including The Wall Street Journal and Travel Weekly, where she is a contributing editor. She also executive-produced a Travel Channel television show based on 1,000 Places to See Before You Die. Her home base is New York City though she is rarely there.
Office Manager & Marketing Assistant, Southern Region – Israel Ministry of Tourism
Hagar has been working with the Israel Ministry of Tourism for the past five years. She graduated with a BA in History of the Jewish people from Ben Gurion University, and a MA in Political Science (specializing in Homeland security) from IDC university, both in Israel. Four years ago she founded Relocationotes blog- sharing her living and traveling experience in the US while promoting Israel as a tourist destination.
Business Development / Sales & Marketing The Bahamas Tourist Office, Houston
Dupree Smith is an experienced sales and marketing professional having worked in the oil and gas industry for 10+ years, before entering the hospitality industry.
As the District Business Development Manager with The Bahamas Tourist Office, he is currently focused on the development of the travel trade segment as well as sales and marketing of The Islands of The Bahamas with a specific focus on the Southwest US region including Texas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Kansas and Nebraska.
He graduated from the historic Langston University in Langston, Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications and a Master of Arts in Marketing at Texas Southern University.
H.E. Mr. Visothy So
Under Secretary of State of Ministry of Tourism, Kingdom of Cambodia
Visothy So is currently an Under Secretary of State – Ministry of Tourism of the Kingdom of Cambodia in charge of marketing and promotion of Cambodia tourism to be an attractive tourism destination in South East Asia.
With over 10 years working experience with the Ministry of Tourism, Mr. Visothy is working closely with Cambodia tourism private sector counterpart campaigning for Cambodia – Kingdom of Wonder and Feel the Warmth to the international arena. Cambodia is recognized by many international renown travel organizations as a must visit destination such as TripAdvisor, Lonely Planet etc. Recently, Angkor Wat, Cambodia is proud to be awarded the world best tourism Landmark for 2018 and Siem Reap have also been selected as the winner of TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice – Destination in Asia for many consecutive years.
Under the guidance of HE. Dr. Thong Khon, Minister of Tourism, Visothy led the Marketing team to formulate and published Cambodia Tourism Marketing Strategy (CTMS) 2016-2020 with the vision to bring more tourist, stay longer and spend more to the kingdom by providing a better experience for tourism to Cambodian riche cultural and natural wonders. With her great potential, Cambodia is well known as a region fastest growth tourism destination in South East Asia.
Mr. Visothy So holds a Master of Management from Charles Stuart University, Australia.
Gerry van der Walt
C- Founder of Wild Eye | International Tour & Expedition Leader | Public Speaker | Nature & Travel Photographer
Gerry van der Walt is an international tour and expedition leader, public speaker, nature and travel photographer and Co-founder of Wild Eye.
By combining a passion for nature photography and more than 15 years of experience as a tour leader, specialist photographic guide and 5-star lodge manager, Gerry’s goal is to not only assist people, whether through teaching them new skills or pushing them creatively, in capturing the beauty of nature but also to create an awareness of the fragile balance that exists in nature.
Through Wild Eye, his bespoke travel and photography company, Gerry has created a vehicle which merges the raw beauty of traveling in some of the world’s most spectacular wilderness areas with the ability to not only capture these moments on camera but also teaching and inspiring people along the way.
Through his podcast, vlogs and social media channels Gerry continues to share his knowledge and passion for travel, photography and bucket list adventures around the globe with his online community.
Gerry looks forward to changing the way you see the world.
Director, U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs, Dallas Passport Agency
Ms. Britany Williams is the Director of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs, Dallas Passport Agency.
She assumed her current position as the first Director of the Dallas Passport Agency opened in May 2009, after serving as Assistant Regional Director of the Chicago Passport Agency for nearly seven years.
Ms. Williams began her career with the U.S. Department of State Department as a Passport Specialist at the New Orleans Passport Agency in 1994, and transferred to the Washington Passport Agency in 1996. After completing a long-term leadership development program in 1998, Ms. Williams joined the Passport Headquarters staff as an Operations Officer in the Field Coordination Division, where she served as Coordinator of the National Passport Duty Officer Program and oversaw multiple training and development initiatives.
Ms. Williams was selected Assistant Regional Director of the Chicago Passport Agency in January 2003. During her tenure as Assistant Regional Director, her recruitment efforts doubled the size of the staff and the Agency’s production capacity. Ms. Williams also participated in local Federal Executive Board activities, served on numerous committees reviewing and enhancing passport policy and procedures, in addition to volunteering for temporary detail assignments at several passport agencies, and at Passport Headquarters.
Ms. Williams is a native of Louisiana, and a graduate of the University of New Orleans where she received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management.