James thornton
Chief executive officer
intrepid Travel

As Chief Executive Officer of Intrepid Travel, James Thornton leads the global business to deliver on the company’s dual objectives of expanding the market for sustainable, experience-rich travel, and operating a company that has a purpose beyond profit. Hailing from the UK, he began his career in the lucrative field of investment management, before making a career change to join Intrepid Travel’s UK office as Sales and Marketing Coordinator. Over the past 13 years, he has made an impact on the business in a variety of senior roles including UK and Europe Regional Director, General Manager Global Sales, and Managing Director of Intrepid Group. He is a member of the Young President’s Organization and the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Claudia Barongo Ogoti
Camp Manager & Host
Campi ya Kanzi

Claudia Barongo Ogoti is a young dynamic Kenyan. With a B.A. in Sociology from The University of Nairobi, Claudia joined Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust (MWCT) in 2016. Supervising the MWCT Payment for Ecosystem Services (carbon and tourism), she specialized in dealing with the indigenous community needs and issues.

 

Claudia joined Campi ya Kanzi in late 2016 and transitioned from guest manager and host to camp manager and host. She has led various air safari expeditions, visiting Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and South Africa. Since its inception in 1997, Campi ya Kanzi has pioneered impactful eco-tourism as a Payment for Ecosystem service in the community where it operates. It has served as an important channel for the recovery of the lion species in this part of Kenya and consequently, the Africa Lion Population in general, demonstrating the role tourism can play in wildlife conservation and natural resources preservation.

Chris Blackwell
founder
Island outpost

Chris Blackwell is the founder of Island Records and creator of resort company Island Outpost in Jamaica. Each hotel is active in its community, participating in local social, economic, environmental, and educational sectors. Island Outpost initiatives under Chris’ Oracabessa Foundation range from coral restoration to local sports programming to hospitality training and education. In 2004, the Order of Jamaica was bestowed upon Chris for philanthropy and outstanding contribution to the entertainment industry. He is now working to bring the best of the world to Jamaica through travel. More than a business, Island Outpost is Chris Blackwell’s way of reawakening the sophisticated and responsible traveler to the beauty and vibe of Jamaica today.

Claire BennetT
Co-Founder, Learning Service
Manager, 
Pepy Tours

Claire Bennett is a co-author of the recently-released book Learning Service: The Essential Guide to Volunteering Abroad, which has been hailed by Noam Chomsky as “a manifesto for doing good well.” She is also the co-founder of LearningService.Info, an online information and advocacy portal for potential international volunteers. She is a manager of PEPY Tours, a responsible travel organization based in Cambodia and Nepal, and helped to oversee their transition away from short-term voluntourism to immersive educational travel.

Claire has been based in Asia for over ten years and currently lives in Kathmandu, where she has a training and consulting company. She provides consultancy to some of the biggest volunteer travel companies around shifting their models away from activities known to be damaging to local communities towards more ethical practices. She also works part time as an educator and facilitator for student travel organization Where There Be Dragons. She is passionate about global equality and social justice issues and loves her cat, her bicycle, and drinking copious amounts of tea.

kristin Dahl
Vice President,
Destination Development
Travel Oregon
 

Kristin Dahl leads the Destination Development team at Travel Oregon, which fosters sustainable tourism development in Oregon. Kristin directs the Oregon Tourism Studio program and oversees the state’s outdoor recreation, agritourism and transportation development initiatives as well as destination management programming.

 

Originally from Juneau, Alaska, Kristin started her career in tourism as a glacier guide atop the Mendenhall Glacier, an experience that opened her eyes to the need for balancing economic growth with stewardship of people and place. As a whitewater guide and expedition leader, Kristin has worked in Oregon, Utah, Mexico, Costa Rica, Laos, and Cambodia. With a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning, she has spent the past fourteen years leading community-based economic development initiatives in the Pacific Northwest. She currently makes her home in Hood River with her husband, Jake, five-year old daughter, Piper Mae, one-year old son, Booker, and Cash the dog.   

neely grobani
director of donor engagement
american Jewish world service

Neely Grobani is the Director of Donor Engagement at American Jewish World Service, where she creates meaningful opportunities to bridge the geographic gap between the organization’s supporters and those promoting human rights in the developing world. Her team plans events and educational engagements nationwide ad well as international study tour trips to bring donors to meet activists in their communities.

 

Prior to joining AJWS, she worked at UJA-Federation of New York. She grew up in Baltimore and graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, with a B.A. in Communication. Neely is a 2019 fellow in the Ruskay Institute for Jewish Professional Leadership and serves on the junior board of the Women’s Prison.

andrea holbrook
president
holbrook travel

Andrea Holbrook is president of Holbrook Travel, Inc., which is based in Gainesville, Florida. Since 1998, she has led the company, which specializes in natural history, educational programs, and the promotion of sustainable travel. She is also part of a family operation that owns and oversees Selva Verde Lodge and Private Reserve in the lowland rainforests of Costa Rica. Andrea helped establish, and is currently president of the board of, the Sarapiquí Conservation Learning Center (SCLC), a community-driven outreach initiative located on the grounds of Selva Verde Lodge. The center’s mission is to empower local communities through learning, providing access to knowledge and promoting sustainable development. 

 

At Holbrook Travel, Andrea directs a team that works with diverse clients, from nature and conservation organizations to high schools and universities to individual specialists. Her company offers programs that support and help carry out their missions in more than 30 countries, mostly in Latin America and East Africa. Through Holbrook, Andrea has also supported three industry associations focused on sustainable development in specific regions: the International Galápagos Tour Operators Association; Friends of the Serengeti; and RESPECT in Cuba. She graduated from Columbia University with a bachelor’s degree in English literature and enjoys spending time, and exploring the world, with her husband, Robert, and teenage daughter, Aggie.

dana Krauskopf
Co-founder & Owner
Hamanasi adventure & dive Resort

Dana Krauskopf has over 25 years of professional experience in the sustainable travel industry and marketing. Her career began by working on major brands for two worldwide advertising agencies and with the Bolshoi/UNESCO Partnership. Since 2000, she has been the co-founder and owner of the award winning Hamanasi Adventure & Dive Resort, a boutique eco hotel on the South Coast of Belize.  Her primary areas of focus include sustainability, marketing, design, and human resources. Hamanasi is Green Globe and Sustainable Travel International certified and is committed to regenerating the environment and benefitting local communities. Dana is a strong advocate for sustainable tourism and has served on many industry and environmental boards. When she is not busy with her three young boys, she enjoys birding, Mayan history, travel, reading, ballet, and art.

Caroline Meledo
Director, Corporate responsibility and human rights
Hilton

Caroline Meledo sits in the global Corporate Responsibility (CR) strategy team for Hilton, driving Hilton’s 2030 Travel with Purpose Goals to redefine sustainable travel. She also serves as the global lead on human rights. Prior to joining HQ in 2017, she established and led Hilton’s CR function for Europe, Middle East, and Africa for four years.

 

Previously, Caroline was part of the Corporate Responsibility team at Sodexo UK & Ireland for three years. In 2009, Caroline was part of the team of the UN Special Representative for Business and Human Rights, providing gender expertise to the development of the Ruggie Framework, which led to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

 

Caroline holds a Masters of Arts in International Relations, International Economics, and International Law from the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University, and a double Diploma in Political Science from the Institut d’Etudes Politique in Lille, France (Sciences Po), and the Westfaelische Universitaet Muenster, Germany.

Denise Naguib
Vice president, sustainability
and supplier diversity
marriott international

Born in Cairo, Egypt, Denise Naguib moved to Michigan, Minnesota, and Oregon, where she attended the University of Oregon. She earned a B.S. in Geography with an emphasis on biological and human impacts on the environment. Denise became involved with Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society implementing environmental education programs globally. In 2005, she moved to the Cayman Islands to implement Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ambassadors of the Environment program at The Ritz-Carlton, then moved to Washington, DC to expand the Cousteau program, as well as develop the environmental strategy.

 

Denise joined the Global Operations division at Marriott International in 2010 and continued her work on sustainability strategy. In 2012, Denise became Vice President, Sustainability and Supplier Diversity. Since launching the company’s new Sustainability and Social Impact platform and goals in November 2017, she is working on projects including responsible sourcing, recycling and food waste, and increasing spend with diverse businesses globally.

k'odi nelson
Executive Director
nawalakw healing society

K’odi Nelson is the Executive Director of the Nawalakw Healing Society and visionary of Nawalakw Lodge - a healing center focused on language and culture resurgence that is supported by an ecotourism enterprise. K’odi was born in ʼYa lis (Alert Bay), BC in 1973. He is the son of Henry Nelson Jr. from the Musga’makw Dzawadaa ’enuxw (Four Tribes of Kingcome Inlet) and Elizabeth Dick from the ‘Mama lilika la (Village Island) Nation. K'odi holds a chieftanship position from the Wayukwamayi clan of the Dzawada'enuxw. He takes great pride in the responsibility that comes with such a position amongst his people.

 

K’odi is a renowned dancer who has mastered all the great dances of the Kwakwaka’wakw. He is a striving song keeper and conductor, a position bestowed on him for his love and passion for his culture. K'odi has received many names during his life such as ‘Maxwiyalidzi ("Big Potlatch Giver") and Wawigustolagalitsugwi’lakw ("No One is Able to Obtain what he has done"), to name a few. He is an accomplished artist and designs traditional regalia for Potlatches and commissions. He is also a composer of traditional songs, a gift that is rare in the present Kwakwaka’wakw world. K'odi and Alisha Souch are the proud parents of their sons Dallas and Zayden, who are training to carry on their culture.

Carmen portela
Co-Founder
local guest
 

Carmen Portela is a travel and tourism professional with over 20 years of experience in marketing and product development. Carmen is born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico. In 2008, Carmen founded Synapse, the first social media agency in Puerto Rico tailored to the hospitality space with projects and clients such as Wyndham Hotels (Puerto Rico & Grand Cayman), ESPN, Caribbean Tourism Organization, PGA Tour, FIBA Americas, Puerto Rico Tourism Company and the Municipality of Caguas.

 

Through her work with tourism stakeholders and her deep passion for traveling with a purpose, she identified the demand for more immersive and authentic experiences in Caribbean. In August 2017, Carmen merged Synapse with Local Guest. Local Guest is a triple bottom line travel and media company that offers visibility and creates opportunities for Caribbean communities and entrepreneurs looking to enter the tourism industry through sustainable development practices.

Carmen is considered a thought leader in the areas of community based tourism development and sustainable tourism. She also serves as an advocate and consultant for the Cannatourism space in the Caribbean with projects in Puerto Rico & Jamaica.

 

Currently, Carmen holds a seat at the Board of Directors of the Puerto Rico Hotel & Tourism Association.

Katherine redington
vice president of social impact journeys and business development
Elevate destinations

Katherine Redington is the Vice President of Social Impact Journeys and Business Development at Elevate Destinations. Katherine holds a Masters in International Education and Development from Columbia University and is certified by the UNWTO in sustainable practices for tourism development. She uses this training to plan extraordinary trips for philanthropists and impact investors in some of the most challenging areas of the globe.

 

She has planned over 115 social impact journeys in over 30 countries for nonprofits including: donor trips, CSR journeys, sabbatical trips for Executive Directors, training for philanthropists, and political will journeys. The subject matter of these journeys range from clean water, to health, education, conservation, forced migration, climate change, human trafficking, poverty alleviation and gender equality.  Katherine works closely with nonprofits to share their stories through responsible travel and create transformational experiences for all stakeholders.

David Rivard
Member, Board of Directors
Airline Ambassadors International

David Rivard has developed businesses in diverse realms that include construction, medicine, politics, and property development. His companies, which include Acadian International in Louisiana, Steel Reinforcing Inc. (SRI) in California, Haines Rivard Construction (HRC), Health Quest Corporation, Vital Signals Corporation, and Saber Rock Construction (ARC) in Afghanistan, serve as patrons to organizations working on organized labor, health, environment, education, and the airline industry’s only relief and development organization, Airline Ambassadors International (AAI).

 

Based in Washington, DC and founded at the Rio Earth Summit, AAI’s thousands of airline members provide disaster relief and development while supporting orphanages on every continent. AAI is also the leading advocate for human trafficking awareness in the aviation industry and spearheaded legislation, protocols, and practices influencing FAA, AFA, APFA, IATA, ICAO, and several air carriers. AAI has expanded outreach with the American Association of Airport Executives, INTERPOL, Special Operations Command South (SOCSouth), and UNODC while providing the only peer-to-peer training on human trafficking.   

 

David serves on the Board of Directors for AAI and was Country Director for Haiti and Colombia. He wrote the architecture for the “TIP Line” smartphone application that reports illicit trafficking in the time sensitive airport environment while initiating class programs for Georgia Technical University to provide the code writing. David served in the First Marine Division, First Recon Battalion in Vietnam.

Rebecca Rothney took her first overseas trip at age 11 and never looked back. She has since traveled to more than 45 countries and all seven continents. Additionally, as a member of International Focus in Raleigh, she has welcomed over 500 international visitors into her home for an evening of dinner and conversation. She graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in 1971. She and her husband, Scott, were married in Antarctica 22 years ago.

 

Giving back to community was instilled in her at a very early age. Rebecca founded Pack for a Purpose on December 19, 2009 as a result of that family value and with the belief that if travelers had an easy and impactful way to contribute to communities at their destinations, they would. 10 years and over 141, 103 kgs (310, 426 lbs) later, Rebecca’s belief has been confirmed. Rebecca was honored as the 2014 National Geographic Traveler of the Year.

Rebecca Rothney
founder & chairperson
pack for a purpose
Jim Sano
vice president for conservation travel
World wildlife Fund

Jim Sano is the World Wildlife Fund’s Vice President for Conservation Travel. He was formerly President of Geographic Expedition and a Park Ranger at Yosemite National Park. Jim was the founding Chairman of the Mono Lake Foundation and has served on the boards of the Trust for Public Land, the Natural Step, and the Yosemite Restoration Trust.  Jim also led the first American men and women’s Everest expedition on the seldom attempted West Ridge, co-leader of the first guided crossing of South Georgia Island, leader of the expedition to reach Gangkar Punseum, and many other expeditions throughout Asia, Latin America, and Africa.

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As President and CEO of the National Park Foundation (NPF), the official nonprofit partner of the National Park Service (NPS), Will Shafroth leads the organization’s work to inspire all people to connect with and protect America’s unique national parks.

 

Will led NPF’s partnership with NPS during the agency’s centennial in 2016, contributing to increased public awareness of parks through the Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque program, engaging diverse audiences and expanding public-private partnerships supporting national parks. He also oversaw the successful conclusion of NPF’s Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, raising over $550 million and leveraging transformational private philanthropy to support national parks.

 

Before joining NPF, Will served as counselor to the former secretary of the Department of the Interior (DOI), Ken Salazar. He has also served as the principal deputy assistant secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at DOI, and as executive director of the Great Outdoors Colorado Trust Fund.

 

A fourth generation Coloradan, Will is the father of three and enjoys biking, hiking, fishing, and playing tennis.

will shafroth
President & Ceo
National Park Foundation
jill talladay
founder & director
Care for the cape and islands

In 2012, Jill Talladay founded CARE (Creating A Responsible Environment) for the Cape and Islands, a destination travelers’ philanthropy organization to help inspire stewardship to further the well-being of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket’s natural environment, cultural, and historical treasures. Previously, Talladay spent more than twenty-five years with travel industry organizations. She received her Masters in Tourism Administration with a concentration in Sustainable Destination Management from The George Washington University in 2011, trained with Al Gore to become a Climate Reality Leader in 2015, and is a 2018 graduate of Tufts Institute for Nonprofit Practice.

 

Jill is a committed volunteer, co-chair of the Yarmouth Recycling and Solid Waste Committee, past president and scholarship chair for Cape Cod Hospitality Marketing Association, a Philanthropy Day of Cape Cod committee member, and founder of Single Volunteers of Cape Cod. She is passionate about using green practices and works hard to educate her friends as well as the public on simple steps they may take to make a difference on a daily basis.

jonathan tourtellot
ceo & portal editor
destination stewardship center

Consultant, journalist, and editor Jonathan B. Tourtellot specializes in sustainable tourism and destination stewardship. He originated the concept of geotourism, defined via National Geographic as “tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place – its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage, and the well-being of its residents.” He founded and for nine years ran National Geographic’s Center for Sustainable Destinations, which continues today as the independent Destination Stewardship Center, www.DestinationCenter.org. He instituted and ran the landmark Destination Stewardship surveys published in National Geographic Travel from 2004-2010. He speaks frequently at international conferences and is a designated National Geographic Explorer. His consulting firm is Focus on Places LLC.

Meenu Vadera
founder & executive director
women on wheels/
azad foundation

Meenu Vadera is a feminist social entrepreneur who is working towards “sustainable livelihoods with dignity for the resource poor” in India.  Her Women on Wheels initiative provides employment opportunities to female drivers which in turn create wealth and value for them individually, and at the same time offer safe transport options to customers who are mostly other women. Women on Wheels is proudly supported by small group adventure operator G Adventures, which is a pioneer in the community tourism space. G Adventures uses Women on Wheels to provide transport for all its travelers arriving to Delhi, and it also supported the launch of the project with new vehicles, funding and training.

 

Since its launch, Women on Wheels has helped more than 2,000 women gain employment and provided more than one million safe rides. A graduate of the London School of Economics, Meenu has backed women’s rights both nationally and globally over the last 30 years, and in 2018 she received the International Inspiration accolade at the IBM iX Everywoman in Travel Awards in London, United Kingdom. 

Jannelle Wilkins
board president
Monteverde Community Fund

From Costa Rica to Ecuador, the Galapagos, Spain, and Mexico, Jannelle Wilkins has implemented a wide range of education and development projects. She has lived in Monteverde, Costa Rica for the past four years and, until recently, directed the Monteverde Institute, an academic and research institution that advances sustainable living, locally and globally, through education, research ,and collaborative community development programs.

 

During her tenure as Executive Director, the Monteverde Institute developed the first-ever destination-wide Travelers' Philanthropy program and, in collaboration with the Center for Responsible Travel (CREST), co-hosted the third International Conference on Travelers' Philanthropy as a core component of responsible travel. While living in Madrid, Spain, Jannelle worked for the World Tourism Organization of the UN and later founded Altamira Tours, which specializes in culinary and cultural tours in Spain, Portugal, Chile, and Argentina. Jannelle holds a Master's degree in Public Administration.

Jessica Blotter
CEO & Co-Founder
Kind Traveler

Jessica Blotter is CEO & Co-Founder of Kind Traveler, a speaker, and a journalist. The moment she discovered the love of travel can’t be separated from the state of the world after witnessing poverty on a trip to Belize, she wondered how the $7-trillion travel industry could be harnessed to benefit local communities, the environment, and animals. This experience led her and her co-founder to launch KindTraveler.com, a social enterprise that’s the first socially-conscious Give + Get hotel booking and education platform empowering travelers to positively impact the destinations they visit. As of 2019, Kind Traveler represents over 100 hotels and more than 60 charities in 14 countries. 

 

Since launching Kind Traveler in late 2016, Jessica has been featured in more than 300 news and blog outlets including The New York Times, Forbes, Conde Nast Traveler, and Travel + Leisure. She delivered a TEDx salon talk ‘The Future of Travel: Purpose is King,’ was a recipient of the 2017 WITTI (Women in Travel & Tourism International) Award by Mandala Research as a Rising Star in Travel & Tourism presented by Skift, received the ‘Best Ethical Travel Agency of 2018’ Award by ELUXE Magazine, delivered the 2019 keynote speech at Tahoe Chamber’s Annual Summit on Responsible Tourism, and is a member of the Forbes Los Angeles Business Council. Jessica received a M.A. in Education from Ottawa University and a B.S. in Biology from Arizona State University.
 

laura gobbi
director of donor engagement
the nature conservancy

Laura Gobbi joined The Nature Conservancy in March 2019. As Director of Donor Engagement, Laura leads a team of donor relations professionals who inspire support for TNC by creating customized events and travel experiences that recognize donors and convey the impact of their gifts. Prior to joining TNC, she was Director of Donor Relations and Events at the Smithsonian Institution, where she leveraged the Institution’s $1.9B capital campaign to develop a pan institutional stewardship plan for donors that became the model for post-campaign events and communications.

 

Prior to the Smithsonian, Laura was Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations and Institutional Giving at Mills College. She managed all aspects of volunteer outreach and dramatically increased giving and alumni engagement.

 

Laura has an M.A. from New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts and a B.A. in Art History and Flute Performance from Oberlin College. Before relocating to Washington, DC from California, she served on the Board of Directors of the Golden Gate Audubon Society, with one year as Chair. When she’s not off looking for birds and nature journaling, she is probably swimming, her other preferred pastime.

Martha honey
co-founder & director emeritus
Center for responsible travel (CREST)

Martha Honey is Co-Founder and Director Emeritus of the Center for Responsible Travel (CREST). Martha led CREST as Executive Director for 16 years before transitioning to her project-based role of Director Emeritus in 2019.

 

Over the last two decades, Martha has written and lectured widely on ecotourism, impact tourism, cruise and resort tourism, coastal and marine tourism, climate change, and certification issues. Her books include Coastal Tourism, Sustainability, and Climate Change in the Caribbean, Vol. 1 & 2, Marine Tourism, Climate Change, and Resilience in the Caribbean, Vol. 1 & 2, Ecotourism and Sustainable Development: Who Owns Paradise? and Ecotourism and Certification: Setting Standards in Practice.

Martha is Executive Producer of CREST’s film, Caribbean ‘Green’ Travel: Your Choices Make a Difference, released in May 2016. Most recently, she has been an editor and author of a new study on cruise tourism, published in Spanish as Por el Mar de las Antillas: 50 Años de Turismo de Cruceros en el Caribe and in English as Cruise Tourism in the Caribbean: Selling Sunshine. Previously, Martha worked for 20 years as a journalist based in East Africa and Central America. She holds a Ph.D. in African history from the University of Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania.

Marcy Kelley
Managing director for Programs
Inter-American Foundation

Marcy Kelley, who joined the Inter-American Foundation in 2003, became its Managing Director for Programs after serving as the IAF Representative for Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, and Panama. Before coming to the IAF, she worked for the U.S. Peace Corps as its Country Director in Ecuador. During the 1990s, she worked for six years in West Africa and for two years in Washington, DC on programs for women in rural development and microfinance. From 1984 to 1988, she was based in Costa Rica as the Regional Director for a project undertaken by a U.S. NGO to encourage the involvement of women in business, and she managed a portfolio of programs extending credit to women in El Salvador, Honduras, and Costa Rica. As a Peace Corps volunteer, she served in the Dominican Republic.

 

Marcy graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a degree in Business Administration and received a master’s degree in Public Administration and Women’s Studies from The George Washington University. When not working, Marcy enjoys spending time with her family and friends, reading a good book, gardening, and riding her bike.

Kelley Louise
Founder & executive director
Impact Travel Alliance

A travel entrepreneur passionate about storytelling and sustainability, Kelley Louise is the founder of Impact Travel Alliance, a nonprofit and community aimed at teaching travelers how to spend their money mindfully so that they have a positive impact on local communities and the environment. She also runs Elsewhere Agency, a boutique creative agency for clients in the travel/impact space.

 

Kelley has built her career through carefully selected opportunities in the United States and abroad, including leadership roles in entrepreneurial endeavors, social impact projects and media strategy. A content creator herself, she is an avid photographer and writer. Kelley is a passionate connector, and has an innate ability to build loyal and diverse communities.

 

She has held several keynote speaking positions, and presented at the United Nations, MMGY’s Vail Summit and the NTA’s Travel Exchange. Kelley has been interviewed by press including the New York Times, Fast Company, Forbes and Travel Pulse. She is the recipient of the Bessie Award for excellence in Social Impact from the Women in Travel Summit (WITS).

 

Kelley has a bachelor's degree in Media & Culture from The New School. She is based in Brooklyn, and you can follow her location-independent lifestyle on Instagram @kelleytravels.

paula vlamings
chief impact officer
tourism cares

For more than a decade, Paula Vlamings has worked at the intersection of tourism and sustainability. Paula serves as the Chief Impact Officer of Tourism Cares, a travel industry nonprofit organization whose mission is to advance the positive impact of travel. Prior to Tourism Cares, Paula was the head of The Planeterra Foundation, the nonprofit foundation of the global travel company G Adventures, where she incubated social enterprises supporting women, youth, and indigenous communities into the tourism supply chain. Paula’s sustainability work includes leading a large-scale national Food for the Parks initiative at the Institute at the Golden Gate, a program of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy. That effort resulted in a national policy change to more sustainable practices in our nation’s parks, and an official endorsement by First Lady Michelle Obama’s Council on Environmental Equality.

Paula has traveled to over 75 countries on all seven continents and is an international speaker on sustainable tourism. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards and is currently on the boards of Omprakash and the U.S. Travel Association.

 

In 2014, Paula realized a wild travel to dream to drive from San Francisco to Tierra del Fuego, literally the end of the world. For two years, she and her husband lived a nomad life, slowly and deliberately, through 17 countries and 24 border crossings where the importance of environmental and social sustainability were a daily consideration of life on the road. She now resides in Marin County, CA with her husband and Meximutt, Ruby.

norie quintos
communications &
content consultant
editor at large, national geographic travel media

Norie Quintos is a consultant for the travel industry on communications strategy, media relations, custom content, and messaging. She helps destinations and travel companies find and tell their stories through communications audits, seminars and training, coaching, and print and pixel projects. An award-winning journalist, she is an Editor at Large for National Geographic Travel Media, contributing content and representing the iconic brand. She has spoken and presented at conferences including the Adventure Travel World Summit, the New York Times Travel Show, International Media Marketplace, the International Indigenous Tourism Conference, and the World Bank World Tourism Day Forum. Her interest areas are cultural tourism, indigenous tourism, sustainable tourism, and transformational travel.

 

She is a member of the Board of Directors of the Adventure Travel Conservation Fund and an advisor to Adventure Media, the Transformational Travel Council, National Geographic Travel Media, Impact Travel Alliance, and the social enterprise startup Giving Way. She is the former executive editor of National Geographic Traveler and was an editor at U.S. News and World Report and Caribbean Travel and Life. She has lived abroad and speaks several languages (badly!). She bikes, hikes, and tweets @noriecicerone.