Speaker Bios

Alvin Adriano

CEO, Travelwise International

Alvin is the host of the weekly show, “Smart People Travelwise” which airs live on Tuesdays at 3PM EST and broadcast on FB, YouTube, PhLV radio, iHeartRadio, Spotify and Apple Podcasts. He has another weekly show entitled “Celebrating Filipino Entrepreneurs.” Alvin also created the Facebook group “Balikbayans Travelwise where he provides updates on health, safety, and travel rules and protocols on the Philippines and responds to queries from mainstream Americans and Fil-ams relative to traveling to the Philippines. The FB group also seeks to help spread the news on exclusive deals and promotions.
His company, Travelwise International has been serving the community for over 30 years and remains one of the most influential and respected luxury travel firms in the industry. Travelwise International’s founder, Ofelia Adriano, was one of the early travel advisors to pioneer travel management for the Filipino Americans since the late 1980s. Travelwise International’s team of top travel advisors has applied their proven formula within leisure travel to a broader range of destinations worldwide. And with its sights now set on increasing its network, Travelwise International continues to expand its product list to include a wider range of markets and a collection of unfathomable destinations. Travelwise International recently announced the launch of its Host Agency (IC) Division, a program created to be an incubator devoted to developing a new breed of forward-thinking travel advisors focused on innovation and finding new ways to propel the industry forward.
Prior to his time in travel, Alvin has held management and leadership roles in other hospitality industries such as hotels, food and beverage and retail. Alvin obtained a bachelor’s degree in accounting, holds a Certified Travel Industry Executive certification, an Accredited Cruise Counselor, and serves on ASTA’s Government Advocacy and Political Affairs committee.

Samantha Brown

Host, PBS’s Samantha Brown’s Places to Love

Travel expert and television host Samantha Brown has been hosting TV travel programs for 20 years. During her time at Travel Channel she created 10 original international and domestic travel series generating over 170 hours of television. In 2017 Samantha moved from the Travel Channel to PBS and Season 1 of her new series Samantha Brown’s Places to Love premiered in January, 2018. In Places to Love, Samantha features the destinations, experiences and most importantly the people that make us the traveler feel like we belong to a place. Season 3 will begin airing on PBS in January 2020 and features destinations like Florida Keys, New Zealand, Miami, Budapest, Dallas and Vienna.
Samantha is known for getting to the emotional heart of travel by focusing on the people, their culture, and the privilege of spending time in their everyday lives. Viewers passionately follow Samantha and her expert advice not only because of her experience and knowledge, but also because of her warmth, genuineness and love for travel.
Samantha grew up in New Hampshire and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband and 7 year old twins Ellis and Elizabeth.

Kristin Carlson

Managing Director, Tahiti Tourisme North America

Kristin Carlson has served as Managing Director of Tahiti Tourisme North America (TTNA), the destination marketing organization for The Islands of Tahiti, since 2017. TTNA oversees all business and consumer outreach for the destination, working regularly with prospective business developments such as airline, hotel, resort, tour operators and cruises in addition to conducting all business and consumer outreach through marketing, advertising and public relations initiatives and programming.
Carlson had held the position of Director of Marketing for TTNA from 2011 until her appointment as Managing Director. She has more than 25 years of professional experience in the tourism industry, including her role as Global Brand Manager at MeringCarson, for the agency’s Visit California account with an emphasis on and brand advertising in China, Mexico, the UK, and Australia. She also served as Director of Strategic Partnerships at Signature Travel Network and enjoyed a 13-year tenure at Crystal Cruises in both Marketing and Hotel Operations for the luxury line. The beginning of her career was in marketing communications for The Fontayne Group and Korean Air.
She has a BA in International Studies and French from Miami University (Oxford, Ohio) and a master’s in international business from Pepperdine University (The George L. Graziadio School of Business and Management).

Carmen Carbonell

President, Your Own Italy

Carmen Carbonell is founder and President of Your Own Italy. Carmen was born in the United States, where she obtained a degree in Architecture. Following college, she married an Italian and moved to Rome, where she raised 4 sons. She also developed a passionate love for Italy – its art, its architecture, its cities, its countryside, its culture and cuisines, and its people.
Now, after nearly 30 years living in Italy, Carmen wants to share her love for Italy with American travelers who want more than a standard tour…travelers who want to experience the real Italy, with the heart and soul of the nature and its people. She founded Your Own Italy as a boutique tour company that will provide private tours that take travelers deep into Italy’s heart and soul, with vacation packages that will be memorable for life, and shore excursions that will give tour ship guests a unique day in Rome, Florence, Venice or the Amalfi Coast. –
The team works with boutique hotels, tested and proven restaurants, historic sites, museums, basilicas, plus individuals and tours that meet Your Own Italy’s standards – standards virtually guaranteed to ensure that Your Own Italy vacation or shore excursion will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience you will remember forever. And long to repeat with your new friends in Italy, Your Own Italy.

Angel Castellanos

World Travel Expert, Writer/TV Host AngelsTravelLounge.com

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 85 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”.
Since you’ve last seen Angel, he has visited The Philippines, Colombia, Honduras, Singapore, Laos, UK, France, Ireland, Italy, Bosnia, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt.
His favorite travel memories include camel trekking in the Sahara, traveling overland by train from Beijing to London, Horse trekking in Mongolia, Hot Air Ballooning in Laos and sailing down the Nile River.
When not in Italy or Paris, Angel is home in Pasadena, California where he is a proud volunteer with the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Association.

Brian Cicioni

Travel Writer & NYC Tour Guide, IMayRoam.com

Brian enjoys exploring cities along public transit lines and writing about it at his blog, IMayRoam.com. He also writes about food tours, layovers, and exploring movie and musical landmarks. You can find some of his work on CheapTickets, Lonely Planet, Matador Network, and USA Today 10Best. Brian has traveled to more than 50 countries as well as every state except for Alaska. On weekends, he leads music and film-focused tours of New York City. His five-star rated Goodfellas Tour has been featured in Airbnb Magazine. Always happy to offer tips to aspiring travel writers and tour guides, Brian has been featured multiple times at the New York Times Travel Show as part of their Meet the Experts panel.

Sarah Dandashy

Award-Winning Travel Concierge and Travel Expert, Ask a Concierge

Sarah Dandashy is a verified travel expert, author, and TV personality with over 18 years of luxury hotel experience. Sought out for her travel tips, advice, and knowledge of trends from the “frontlines of travel,” Sarah pivoted her career from being an award-winning concierge to traveling the globe working with some of the leading brands in the travel industry. Follow her on social media under her brand, “Ask A Concierge,” or catch her on the news breaking down the latest in the travel on ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, or Chedder News. Sarah has been featured in numerous publications from the New York Times, Nerdwallet, Business Insider, USNews, Reader’s Digest, and Thrillist, and she is the author of the book, Hospitality From Within.

Rissie Demeritte

Area Sales Manager, Bahamas Tourism Office New York

Rissie Demeritte traded her flip flops for snow boots and is currently based in New York as the Bahamas Tourist Area Sales Manager for the Northeastern United States. She is the quintessential island girl who loves sharing why it’s truly better in The Bahamas.

Julian Douglas

Travel Writer, Photographer  and Experience Curator, Listen, Journey, Savor

“Listen, Journey, Savor with Julian Douglas”… is exactly what he asks of his family, friends and especially his readers to do with him.
As an experienced traveler, Julian has traversed the globe since he was a child. From treasured moments with his flight attendant mother growing up, to his years in the music industry, to just vacationing with his wife Nicole for pleasure. It has all inspired Julian to write about his passions for music, food and especially his love of travel.

Montana Fee

Senior Sales Manager, Cruise Planners

Montana Fee is the current Senior Sales Manager at Cruise Planners and oversees supplier relationships and manages the Promotions Team. She graduated from the University of Central Florida with a bachelor’s degree and began her career at Cruise Planners in 2015 as the Operations Coordinator. In less than a year, Montana transitioned to the Sales Team as a Sales Coordinator and focused on bolstering the company’s Cruise Line and Tour Company promotions. Fun fact: Montana grew up in the travel industry and met her husband on a Royal Caribbean ship in 2012.

Klaus Fielsch

Product Manager, Metrojourneys

Klaus was born in Quito- Ecuador in a German/Ecuadorian family, he spent most of his childhood in a farm near Quito, where he developed his passion for nature and design. His father had a great influence on his interests, as he passed on book collections by Humboldt and Darwin.
When deciding upon careers, Klaus was selected to become a naturalist guide for the Ecuadorian amazon-based vessel, Flotel Orellana, and what he thought to be a temporary job ended up being his whole career. In 1990 he became a Mountain Guide, a National Guide in 1991, and in 1992 a Galapagos Naturalist Guide.
From 1993 onward until 1997 he spent one semester at a university in the United States and one semester in the Enchanted Islands, and in 1997 he became a Galapagos Expedition Leader. In 2006, he started working as an Expedition Manager in Metropolitan Touring, where he would become a Product Manager to this day.
He gets to visit the Galapagos Islands and Ecuador several times a year, so he has the world’s best job!

Pauline Frommer

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.

Peter Greenberg

Emmy Award-Winning Investigative Reporter and Producer and CBS News Travel Editor

A multiple Emmy-winning investigative reporter and producer, Peter Greenberg is America’s most recognized, honored and respected front-line travel news journalist. Known in the travel industry as “The Travel Detective,” he is the Travel Editor for CBS News, appearing on CBS This Morning, CBS Evening News and CBS Sunday Morning. And his national CBS EYE ON TRAVEL radio show is broadcast from a different location around the world each week.
The consummate insider on reporting the travel business as news, Peter Greenberg also hosts the weekly public television show The Travel Detective with Peter Greenberg. And, for more than 20 years, Greenberg has produced and hosted The Royal Tour, historic, precedent-setting shows, where sitting heads of state become Greenberg’s tour guide for very personal journeys to and through their countries, for one hour global prime time specials. The Royal Tours range from King Abdullah in Jordan to the Prime Minister of New Zealand, the President of Mexico, the Prime Minister of Israel, the President of Rwanda and many others.
Travel Weekly named Peter Greenberg one of the most influential people in travel, along with Bill Marriott and Sir Richard Branson. He was inducted into the U.S. Travel Association’s Hall of Leaders for his contributions to the travel industry. Among his other honors, Peter Greenberg received a News & Documentary Emmy Award as part of the NBC News Dateline team for outstanding coverage of a breaking news story, “Miracle on the Hudson.”
Peter Greenberg began his career in journalism as West Coast correspondent for Newsweek in Los Angeles and San Francisco. He won a national Emmy Award for Best Investigative Reporting for the 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.
And when he is not reporting all over the world, Greenberg is an active volunteer fireman in New York.

Russell Hannon

Ultra-Economical Travel Expert, Break the Travel Barrier

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, USA Today, Women’s World, Around the World Travel TV, and nationally broadcast lifestyle and personal finance shows. Russell worked as a CBC Budget Travel Columnist, founded BreakTheTravelBarrier.com, and is the author of ‘Stop Dreaming… Start Traveling: The Ultimate Guide to Traveling More & Spending Less.’

Max Hartshorne

Editor at GoNOMAD.com

Max Hartshorne has been the editor of GoNOMAD.com Travel since 2002 and has written hundreds of travel stories as well as edited thousands of stories for site, which is ranked in the top five of all travel sites. He is a regular speaker at the Traverse and TBEX travel writer conferences and at other travel events. He lives in South Deerfield, MA and also writes a monthly travel column for the Montague Reporter newspaper.

Vincie Ho

Founder & Executive Director at RISE Travel Institute

Vincie (she/her/hers), a humane educator and social justice advocate, founded RISE Travel Institute in June 2020 with a mission to inspire responsible, impactful, sustainable and ethical travel through education. Her work focuses on engaging young people in important conversations around human rights, animal protection and environmental sustainability in the context of travel and beyond.
Vincie has a PhD in Linguistics from the University of Hong Kong and a Master of Arts degree from University College London. She has also obtained various graduate certificates and diplomas from the Institute for Humane Education and New York University in the United States, the United Nations University in Japan, and l’Université de Franche-Comté in France.
Learn more about RiseTravelInstitute.org and follow them on Instagram and Linkedin.

Mike & Anne Howard

National Geographic Authors & Founders of HoneyTrek

Mike & Anne left on their honeymoon in January 2012…and never came home. They created HoneyTrek.com to chronicle their journey across all seven continents and help people mobilize their travel dreams. Their story of the World’s Longest Honeymoon, savvy tips, and blog have been featured in hundreds of international media outlets—from USA Today to Lonely Planet. Firm believers that love and travel make the world a better place, they authored Ultimate Journeys for Two—National Geographic’s bestselling couples travel guide. To write their newest book, Comfortably Wild, they bought a vintage RV (aka Buddy the Camper) and traveled 73,000 miles across 9 countries to find the best glamping experiences in North America. Their original research, on everything from the history of glamping to this travel style’s scientific benefits, has earned them a Lowell Thomas Journalism Award for guidebooks and a seat on the American Glamping Association Board of Advisors. Despite the pandemic’s hurdles, the socially distanced nature of RVing and glamping have allowed the Howards to safely continue their journey and share it with their 340,000+ followers. Connect with Mike & Anne @HoneyTrek across all social media platforms.

Norrell Joseph

Sales & Marketing Manger., USA Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority

Norrell Joseph is a Destination Sales & Marketing professional with the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority (ABTA) based in the United States and leads promotion of the twin-islands as the premier destination for leisure travel in the Caribbean. He joined the ABTA in 2014, as a Tourism Marketing Officer, then transitioned into Sales, as Sales Officer managing the island’s business development in the Mid-Atlantic region; and was quickly promoted as the destination’s Sales & Marketing Manager.
Norrell holds a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree in Hospitality Management specializing in ‘Tourism and Destination Management’ from Monroe College, New York; and as an alumnus sits on the institution’s Advisory Board for the School of Hospitality Management and Culinary Arts, as well as a member of several hospitality and travel industry organizations. He’s a former Broadcast Journalist with Grenville/ZDK Liberty Radio Antigua and Project Assistant with the Caribbean Tourism Organization, USA.

David Kasser

Senior Vice-President of Sales, Visit Anchorage

David S. Kasser is a lifelong Alaskan and a world traveler. He has guided tours throughout the State of Alaska and Western Canada in all seasons. Recently he even sailed his own boat across the gulf of Alaska to its home port in Seward. David shares his love and excitement for his home state as an invitation to kindred adventurers like you!

Brian Kelly

Founder and CEO of The Points Guy (TPG)

Brian Kelly is the founder and CEO of The Points Guy (TPG), the leading voice in loyalty programs, points, miles, credit cards and travel. He has grown TPG to be a powerhouse travel and lifestyle media platform that reaches over 10 million unique monthly visitors around the world.
Kelly has found a unique way to reach his audience and inspire millions to live their best lives through his supercharged personality, deep industry knowledge and extensive worldwide travel. Through his content and creativity, annual TPG Awards, reader events, video series and social media, Kelly has introduced new platforms in an effort to bring the latest and greatest to millions of TPG followers and travel consumers. He has been recognized with awards and accolades, including AdWeek’s “Young Influentials” list in 2019 and Forbes’ #1 travel influencer. His long-standing knowledge and expertise has garnered the trust of the nation’s top morning shows, with appearances on TODAY Show, CBS This Morning, Good Morning America and Kelly & Ryan, among others.
Kelly’s passion for travel is shared by a belief in using travel as a global force for good, and he currently serves as a Committee Member for Rainbow Railroad, Global Ambassador for PeaceJam, Co-Chair of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Leadership Council, Goalkeeper for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and member of PTTOW.

Francisco Hilario M. Lardizabal

Tourism Attaché/Director, Philippine Department of Tourism – New York

Mr. Lardizabal competed his B.S. Tourism degree from UP Diliman Asian Institute of Tourism and his MBA from De La Salle University.
He rose from the ranks at the Department of Tourism where he started as Clerk III in 1989 and eventually became Chief Tourism Operations Officer at the Bureau of Domestic Tourism Promotions in 1998. He was later assigned as group head of Team Middle East and head of the Strategic Development Technical Unit where he was tasked to do market research and planning and promotional activities for new markets such as Israel, Turkey, and Iran.
Mr. Lardizabal is a member of DOT’s pool of Foreign Tourism Officers and was conferred his Career Executive Service Eligibility (CESE) in 2017.
He assumed his first overseas post as Tourism Attaché for Philippine Department of Tourism – New York on August 1, 2019.

Melanie Lieberman

Senior Travel Editor, The Points Guy

Melanie Lieberman is currently the senior travel editor at The Points Guy, where she oversees daily travel and lifestyle news, destination coverage, travel features and reports. Prior to TPG, Melanie was an editor at Travel + Leisure magazine, and her work has appeared in Bloomberg Pursuits, Yahoo Travel, Jetsetter, Boston Common magazine, LUXE City Guides, Thrillist and Saveur magazine, among others. She has been recognized for her journalism, poetry, prose and playwriting in various competitions and festivals, and has been featured as a travel expert by notable outlets across radio, podcasts, in print and on television, including Good Morning America, MSNBC, Fox Business and The Weather Channel.

James McAlloon

Global Relationships Manager, Chimu Adventures

James McAlloon is the Global Relationships Manager for Antarctic Travel Specialist: Chimu Adventures. As well as leading the growth of Chimu’s business development in Australia and around the world. James is a lover of the polar regions having been to the white continent many times; most recently with Chimu in 2020 and flying over Antarctica to celebrate the 2022 New Year.

Andrew McCarthy

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.

Julia Menez

Founder of Geobreeze

Julia Menez is a travel “hacking” coach, speaker, and founder of Geobreeze.
After traveling to more than 30 countries before the age of 30 and saving thousands of dollars each year by travel “hacking”, Julia develops personalized travel “hacking” strategies for her coaching clients and hosts the Geobreeze Travel Podcast, where she interviews a diverse roster of points and miles enthusiasts.
Julia has been a speaker for FinConX, a course instructor for Frequent Traveler University Online, and has been featured in numerous finance, business, and travel podcasts. She is available for comments and interviews regarding award travel, personal finance, and women in business.

Darley Newman

TV Host & Producer, Travels with Darley

Recognized in Forbes for her “PBS travel empire,” Darley Newman is an entrepreneur, TV host, writer, and producer. Through her production companies, she has channeled her passions for travel and storytelling into successful multi-platform series and distinctive media brands. She is the creator, producer, and host of Emmy Award-winning “Equitrekking” and “Travels with Darley” on PBS, Amazon Prime, Ovation TV, and networks in over 85 nations. Having led production teams in over 30 nations and 26 states, she’s been charged by an elephant in Botswana’s Okavango Delta, gone free diving in South Korea, taken on the world’s highest commercial bungee in China and explored by mountain bike the WWI ‘red zone’ of northeast France. In addition to six Daytime Emmy Award nominations, she’s received the North American Travel Journalist Award, the Inspiring Woman Award from Women in Philanthropy and Leadership, two Telly Awards and was inducted into the the Taste Awards Hall of Fame.

Beth Santos

Founder and CEO, Wanderful

Beth Santos is founder and CEO of Wanderful, a leading membership collective of thousands of travelers and travel content creators on a mission to make travel better for women everywhere. In addition to its online community and chapters around the world, Wanderful is creator of the WITS Travel Creator + Brand Summit, a leading event for women travel creatives, marketers, and media, as well as the annual Bessie Awards and the first major outdoor travel festival by and for women, Wanderfest. When she’s not traveling, she’s pulling espressos as co-owner of Ula Cafe, a social justice and community-focused cafe in Boston, or taking exploration walks with her husband and two daughters.

Patricia Schultz

Author, 1,000 Places to See Before You Die and 1,000 Places to See in the United States and 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. She is a veteran travel journalist with over thirty years of experience, writing for Frommer’s, Berlitz, and Access travel guides, as well as the Wall Street Journal, Condé Nast Traveler, and other magazines and newspapers. Her home base is in New York City, but good luck finding her there!

Paul Shoul

Travel Photographer

Paul Shoul is a Northampton, MA-based photographer, and a staff writer for GoNOMAD. For thirty years he’s lived in the Pioneer Valley and chronicled life there through his work in the Valley Advocate. He’s also been seen in the Boston Globe, New York Times, BBC, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and many other publications. Today as well as shooting for GoNOMAD he works for local nonprofits, banks, and advertising agencies.

Natasha Lee Soy

Sales Manager, NY NJ & CT, Aruba Tourism Authority

Natasha Lee Soy has been in the hospitality industry for over twenty-four years. She has expertise in Spa Resorts and All-inclusive hotels. She has worked in Public Relations/Marketing for a non-profit organization on Wall Street and now shares her creative talents with the Aruba Tourism Authority and is in charge of NY, CT & NJ areas.

Oksana St. John

Editor-in-Chief, Award-Winning Sustainable Blog, DrinkTeaTravel.com

Oksana St John is a travel writer, sustainable travel & lifestyle advocate and an avid photographer living a nomadic lifestyle with her husband Max. She is a Founder and Editor-in-Chief of an Award-Winning Sustainable Travel Blog, Drink Tea & Travel, traveling the world in search of outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, human connections, and ways to make a positive impact on the destinations and communities they visit.

Ralph Velasco

Found & CEO (Chief Experience Officer), PhotoEnrichment Adventures

Ralph Velasco is a U.S.-based travel photography instructor, author and international guide who for more than 12 years has organized and led over 100 international small group tours, and more than 100 domestic tours, in the United States under the PhotoEnrichment Adventures brand. His 5-star rated international trips have included Armenia & the Republic of Georgia, Egypt, Morocco, the Adriatic, Central Europe, Iceland, Bhutan & Nepal, Vietnam, Cambodia, India, Spain, Portugal, Tuscany, Romania, Mexico’s Copper Canyon, Turkey, Costa Rica, Cuba, and many other locations.
Ralph co-hosts a podcast called the Traveling Image Makers and is a frequent public speaker here at the Travel & Adventures Shows, as well as other events around the world.
Recently he created a new travel brand called Alla Campagna Experiences where the focus is less on photography and even more about the culture, people, food, drink and other unique activities and experiences they have to offer. This is slow and intentional travel at its best, all while staying in unforgettable properties, including private castles, wine estates, agriturismos, one-of-a-kind boutique hotels, former villas and converted mansions, mostly around the Mediterranean.
Ralph just recently launched his new YouTube channel and accompanying travel blog called The Continental DRIFTER which is aimed at Baby Boomers. There he shares simple but powerful tips for making your travels easier and more interesting, and your photography even better. Now, invest in yourself…get out and travel [when it’s safe]!

Sandra Vénite

CEO of Sandra Venite Consulting, Representing the Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board

Born and raised in Paris from French Caribbean parents (Guadeloupe and Martinique), Sandra Venite holds a bachelor’s degree in Foreign Languages (English & German) applied to International Management from Paris XII University. After a career as a Senior Executive Assistant in the Publishing industry in Paris, Venite moved to New York in 2006. In 2012, she became the U.S. Director for the Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board after a passage at Yves Saint Laurent. Sandra Venite Consulting, Inc. was born in 2018, from the desire to empower more brands thanks to innovative partnerships and branding strategies, resources optimization, pertinent press relations and seamless execution. The Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board is one of Venite’s principal clients along with other companies and institutions in the hospitality business, French Luxury, Interior Design, New technologies and Culture.

Victoria M. Walker

Senior Travel Reporter, The Points Guy

Victoria M. Walker is the Senior Travel Reporter at The Points Guy, where she covers the pandemic’s effect on travel. At TPG, she writes heavily reported features, special reports, and first-person essays.Victoria’s travel writing has been seen in the New York Times and the Washington Post. She’s also been seen and heard on ABC News’ “Good Morning America,” NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and Slate. She currently co-hosts the “As Far As I Know” travel news series on Instagram Live.
She founded Vikkie Ventures in 2017, where she wrote about traveling as a Black woman. In five years, Victoria traveled to over 25 countries and racked up hundreds of thousands of miles in the air.
Between 2017 and 2019, Victoria first served as an adjunct and then full-time multimedia journalism lecturer at her alma mater, Howard University. Victoria taught Multimedia Storytelling, Intro to Media Production and Digital Media Literacy.
She started her career as a video editor at The Washington Post, where she spent nearly three years on the breaking news video desk. She was part of the team that won the Society for Features Journalism’s Diversity in Digital Features award in 2019 for the “Green Book” project.
Victoria lives in New York City with her three-year-old pug, Migo. You can connect with Victoria via email, LinkedIn, or @Vikkie.


  • Finalist: National Association of Black Journalists Salute to Excellence Awards, 2019 (The Washington Post)
  • Won: Society for Features Journalism, Diversity in Digital Features, 2019 (The Washington Post)
  • Won: Poynter International Fact-Checking Network Flash Grant (USA), 2018 (Howard University)
  • Won: Gracie Award for Outstanding Series, “Campus Sexual Assault Series,” 2015 (NPR, Contributing)

Steve Wellmeier

Managing Director, Poseidon Expeditions USA

A 30-year veteran of the expedition cruise industry, Steve has actively been involved in polar expedition cruising since 1997. This includes five years as Executive Director of IAATO, the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators. In that capacity, he represented the Antarctica tourism industry, helping to ensure best practices and environmental stewardship by all Antarctic tour operators. A resident of Providence, Rhode Island since 2005, Steve currently manages the North American office of Poseidon Expeditions, which he opened in 2014.

Brent E. Winebrenner

Filmmaker, Guatemala: On the Edge of Discovery

Brent was a CPA and now he is not. He dropped out of the corporate world in mid-career to pursue a livelihood first as a photographer and now a filmmaker.
He earned a master’s degree at the Brooks Institute of Photography. Upon graduation, he joined the faculty in the school’s Visual Journal program. There he learned the fine art of story telling and began his freelance career as a travel and location photographer. His credits include National Geographic Traveler, National Geographic Adventure, Wine Spectator, the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and dozens of Lonely Planet Publications. He photographed the Splendor of Cuba, a Rizzoli Publication that was recognized as one of the best photography books of 2011.
His work has taken him to more than 70 countries, including a deep dive into Guatemala, resulting in Guatemala: On the Edge of Discovery, a new documentary film that will be available for national broadcast on PBS later this year.