2018 Speakers

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Amanda Lindhout

Author, A House in the Sky

Amanda Lindhout

Keynote Speaker & Author, A House in the Sky

About

Amanda Lindhout is a sought after inspirational speaker, trusted by big brands to deliver a life changing, transformational keynote experience. Her New York Times bestselling memoir, A House in the Sky, is being developed into a Hollywood motion picture by heavyweight production company Annapurna, with 2x Oscar nominated actress Rooney Mara playing Amanda. 

A publishing phenomenon, A House in the Sky, has remained a Top Ten bestselling book since it’s release in 2013. Raised by a single mom in a small city, Amanda escaped the violence of her childhood home by imagining herself in the pages of National Geographic magazine. As a young woman, Amanda’s curiosity led her to some of the world’s most beautiful and remote places, its most imperilled and perilous countries and then into 15 months of harrowing captivity. Working as a journalist in Somalia, she was abducted by a group of masked men along a dusty road. Amanda spent 460 days as a hostage, surviving on strategy, fortitude and hope in the face of unimaginable adversity.

Amanda’s unique experiences give her credibility to discuss important issues ranging from countering terrorism to supporting the women’s movement and she regularly appears in the media with her opinion. She has been featured in Vogue, New York Times Magazine, Dateline, The Today Show, Morning Joe and Anderson Cooper.

Amanda’s keynote presentations are for audiences of all sizes- from Richard Branson’s living room to an arena of 20,000- she creates intimacy with the women and men in the room through her emotional, powerful storytelling. Her tale of survival builds suspense and momentum to reveal life changing insights into mind conditioning, including actionable takeaways about reframing stories of pain into power.

 Amanda has travelled to nearly 90 countries. She lives in Calgary, Canada.

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Oneika Raymond

Host, Travel Channel

Oneika Raymond

Host, Travel Channel & Founder, Oneika the Traveller

About

Oneika Raymond: Explorer, media personality, and journalist Oneika Raymond is the host of two Travel Channel digital series: “Big City, Little Budget” and “One Bag and You’re Out”. She also appears on television as the in-house travel expert for CTV Canada’s national news program “Your Morning”. A bona fide travel junkie, Oneika’s adventures abroad have taken her to over 100 countries on 6 continents. Her most treasured travel experiences include bungee jumping over the Zambezi River, fishing for piranhas in the Amazon, and climbing active volcanoes in Guatemala, Ecuador, and Indonesia.

Oneika is also the voice behind “Oneika the Traveller”, an award-winning travel blog dedicated to inspiring, encouraging, and empowering women and people of color to see the world. A noted public speaker, she gave the keynote address at the Women in Travel Summit in 2017. BlogHer, one of the largest conferences for women in digital media, also honored her with a Voices of the Year (VOTY) award the same year. 

Oneika has worked as a spokesperson and ambassador for global brands such as Land Rover, Toyota, Coca-Cola, and Star Alliance. Additionally, she has written for and been profiled by major outlets such as the BBC, Condé Nast Traveler, The Wall Street Journal, National Geographic Traveler, BuzzFeed, and CNN. 

An aspiring polyglot and former foreign language teacher who holds an M.Ed in French Education, she speaks fluent English, French, Spanish, and is currently learning German.
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Kellee Edwards

Host, Travel Channel's Mysterious Islands

Kellee Edwards

Host, Travel Channel’s Mysterious Islands

About

Kellee Edwards is a travel expert and television host by land air and sea. She is a licensed pilot, advanced open water scuba diver, explorer and journalist. A pioneer in her approach to adventure travel made her brand Kellee Set Go! become recognized by some of the biggest brands in travel including that of the biggest TV network in this realm, The Travel Channel. Kellee is the host of Mysterious Islands, a series that explores some of the most remote islands  of the 100,000 in the world, that viewers more likely have never heard of. She is also the co-host of The Trip 2018 on the network.

Exploring  over 40 countries thus far, including parts of North and West Africa, Asia, South and Central America, Europe and the UAE, her love for travel has allowed Kellee to become an On-Air contributor for FOX 5 San Diego’s “Live for Travel” segment for over three years,  and serve as a writer and editor for Pilot Getaways magazine. An advocate for women in adventure travel, Kellee has been featured in Forbes, Conde Naste Traveller, Travel & Leisure, Essence  Magazine to name a few and even named an “Inspirational Woman” by South Bay Magazine.

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Caroline Makepeace

Founder, Y Travel Blog

Caroline Makepeace

Founder, Y Travel Blog

About

Caroline Makepeace is the co-founder of ytravelblog.com with her husband, Craig.

Caroline has been relentlessly pursuing a life of travel since she graduated from university in 1997. She’s lived in 5 countries and traveled to over 50. She now travels full time with her two daughters, proving travel does not have to stop after kids. The yTravel family are currently road tripping across the US.
Their award winnning blog helps their readers unplug from the chaos life, to reconnect to what matters and to travel more and create better memories.
They have been featured by publications such as Lonely Planet, The Today Show, Forbes, Travel & Leisure, Conde Nast and Cheddar TV.
They’ve also partnered with some of the world’s biggest travel brands such as Allianz Global Assistance, Canon, TripAdvisor, Booking.com, Skyscanner and multiple tourism boards around the world. Y Travel was recently awarded a Modern Entrepreneur award for their excellence in publishing.
Caroline loves sharing her insights on travel, blogging, and how to create your dream life!
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Lilit Marcus

Travel Editor, CNN

Lilit Marcus

Travel Editor, CNN

About

Lilit Marcus is the editor for CNN Travel. Prior to joining CNN she was a contributing writer for Condé Nast Traveler. Her first book, Save the Assistants: A Guide for Surviving and Thriving in the Workplace, was published by Hyperion. 

Lilit’s favorite destinations include Lisbon, Tel Aviv, Nashville, and Mexico City. Her work has also appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, The Guardian, Vanity Fair, and The Atlantic.
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Evita Robinson

Founder, Nomadness Travel Tribe

Evita Robinson

Founder, Nomadness Travel Tribe

About

Evita Robinson With a background in television/video production & fine art, Evita has always been a creator in visual media. Yet, it was a trip to Paris, six weeks after graduating from Iona College, that changed the scope of her personal and professional life.

In September 2011, she created the Nomadness Travel Tribe, an online social community primarily for travelers of color. Nomadness was the first of its kind targeting diverse millennials, in the newly coined ‘black travel movement’. The group currently surpasses 16,000 international members, with over 100,000 passport stamps, and nearly 100 meet ups a year, all across the globe.

From the success of the online group, Evita has garnered partnerships with Airbnb, Etihad Airlines, GoPro, Facebook Stories, Hyatt, Skift.com, Cantu, and Issa Rae, who she Co- Executive Produces The NOMADNESS Project web series with on YouTube.

Continuing to innovate the travel space has landed Nomadness in the print and digital pages of The New York Times, Inc., Entrepreneur, The Daily Beast, EBONY, and ESSENCE Magazines. Evita can also be seen between news panels and business features for CNN, BBC, MSNBC, truTV, The Root, NewsOne, and Oxygen Channel. Evita was also invited to the White House under the Obama Administration for their meeting of world’s creative changemakers, for SXSL (South By South Lawn).

She now serves as a keynote/seminar speaker, TED Resident, consultant for Destination Marketing Organizations, and continues her love of seeing the world while writing her first book.

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Kristen Sarah

Founder, Hopscotch the Globe

Kristen Sarah

About

Kristen Sarah is one of the top travel videographers and travel video creators on YouTube. Her channel, Hopscotch the Globe, has over 25 million views and over 150,000 subscribers. Over the past 6 years, she has written, produced, and hosted dozens of video campaigns for some of the biggest international brands, companies, and tourism boards. She’s worked both behind and in front of the camera for major Canadian and US television networks such as Travel Channel, MTV, YTV, and Much Music. Just in the last year, Kristen hosted two web series with Travel Channel, a television pilot and produced the largest and most successful multi-media campaign with Toyota Motor Corporation to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. Kristen is a Lonely Planet and Sony Ambassador, and has been named one of USA Today’s top travel videographers, one of Matador’s top travel YouTube creators, and one of the most influential women in travel by Flight Centre. 

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Carol Cain

Founder, Girl Gone Travel

Carol Cain

About

Carol Cain: Carol has always been fascinated with the way people from different backgrounds and experiences interact and take in the world around them and how it influences the way in which they share their stories. As a once terribly shy child who moved around often, she found comfort in observing how others navigated their environment and related to it.

Little did she know that this skill would follow her into a career as a public relations professional, where she worked to engage the Latino press and its community in the promotional efforts of the non-profit entities she worked for. It even encouraged her to pursue an MBA in Global Management where she trained to teach business leaders to look beyond the surface to find a sense of commonality and understanding among potential foreign investors and partners.

In the end, the greatest influence would be on her own story-telling style as the award-winning travel blogger at GirlGoneTravel.com and in her quest to encourage others to go against the grain and find that unique voice in travel. Carol has partnered with various brands such as Canon and Sony for photography; with Barilla for promotion of Italian cuisine and culture, and as a wine ambassador for Atout France for three consecutive years. In addition to her role as an Expedia Viewfinder, she has shared her tips and stories in various English and Spanish print, TV, and online outlets, and her travel photography has been featured in publications as far as OK! Magazine in Germany.
Carol is also the co-founder and Director of Brave World Media, a social media management and brand development agency.

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Kae Lani

Audience Engagement Editor, USA Today 10Best and Eat Sip Trip

Kae Lani

Audience Engagement Editor, USA Today 10Best and Eat Sip Trip

About

Kae Lani is the Audience Engagement Editor at USA Today’s 10 Best and Eat Sip Trip. While some travelers follow their hearts — Kae Lani follows her gut.

Though she works as a travel writer, photographer and videographer for USA Today 10Best, she is also the co-creator of their newest venture, Eat Sip Trip. Obsessed with the history and origin of food, she explores the intricate and sometimes peculiar backstories of dishes around the world. Her quest for cuisine has taken her from exploring the Spice Route in Israel to searching for the Geisha coffee bean in Panama. Kae Lani’s motto: Life is too short to live anything but deliciously.

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Nikki Vargas

Founder, The Pin the Map Project

Nikki Vargas

About

Nikki Vargas

Nikki Vargas is a Travel Journalist with bylines in Vice, Roads & Kingdoms, Food & Wine, INSIDER Travel, Matador Network, The Huffington Post and more. Previously, Nikki was the Travel Editor of Culture Trip, overseeing US editorial operations for the travel genre. As Travel Editor, Nikki wrote for the site, oversaw contributors and co-produced/hosted the original Culture Trip series, Hungerlust, in addition to other videos. As Editor, Nikki represented Culture Trip as a guest commentator on Cheddar TV Live and as a speaker at the New York Times Travel Show (2017).

In addition, Nikki is the Founder of The Pin the Map Project, voted a top 100 travel blog of 2015. As Founder and Travel Blogger, Nikki has spoken at the New York Travel Fest (2015/16), Women’s Travel Fest (2016/18), The New York Times Travel Show (2016) and NPR Weekend Edition (2016). Nikki will be speaking at the upcoming Women in Travel Summit in Quebec City, May 2018.

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Gloria Atanmo

Founder, The Blog Abroad

Gloria Atanmo

Founder, The Blog Abroad

About

Gloria AtanmoFounder, The Blog Abroad

Glo has often been called the Black, Millennial face of travel with her witty, empowering, and relatable site – TheBlogAbroad.com, which reads like a letter from your best friend.
Her vivacious personality paired with her sense of humor, are the reason she’s been able to build a global following while traveling through 60 countries across 6 continents.
Living out of a suitcase for almost 5 years, she takes her followers with her through her photography, digital storytelling, and videos.
Author, From Excuses to Excursions
Written over 3 years, penned in Montenegro and originally published while in Thailand, Glo’s book is an inspirational and hilarious memoir chronicling the life of a gal with a colorful imagination and an unparalleled desire to explore it.
GoPro Ambassador
Glo has been featured in multiple global ads for GoPro and was a part of the launch campaign for the GoPro Hero 6 which featured scenes of her in Bali and Hawaii.
She makes annual travel montages of her GoPro footage and also licenses them to travel brands to use for their own marketing purposes.
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Kathleen Rellihan

Editor in Chief, Adventure.com

Kathleen Rellihan

Editor in Chief, Adventure.com

About

Kathleen Rellihan is the editor in chief of Adventure.com, a new online travel magazine that launched in early 2017. Kathleen is a travel journalist with over 12 years of online media experience—before launching Adventure.com, she was an editor at Travel Channel focusing on bringing more of a female voice to the the travel world with content such as the web series, The Lost Girls.

Her love for adventure travel has inspired her to dance (and hike) her way to the top of Kilimanjaro and Mt. Elbrus, and explore the hidden beauty of places such as Haiti—a country she returns to more than anywhere else. And she always talk to strangers—on the road and at home in New York City.

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Stephanie Zito

Professional Travel Hacker, founder, Wandering For Good

Stephanie Zito

Professional Travel Hacker, Author & Humanitarian

About

Stephanie Zito, founder of wanderingforgood, is a professional travel hacker and part time humanitarian on a mission to help travelers access the globe through hotel, airline, and credit card points. Stephanie is the author of the award travel books Upgrade Unlocked: The Unconventional Guide to Luxury Travel on a budget, The Honeymoon Hack, and the forthcoming Go Girl: Travel Hacking Guide for Girls, and also is co-owner and managing editor of the Travel Hacking Cartel, a points and miles service.

Stephanie has been collecting miles since high school, and took her first international airline mileage trip in 1994 to Europe. Stephanie has since traveled to more than 125 countries and all seven continents using points and miles.
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Allison Fleece & Danielle Thornton

Co-founders + Chief Adventurers, WHOA Travel

Allison Fleece + Danielle Thornton

Co-Founders + Chief Adventurers, WHOA Travel

About

Allison Fleece + Danielle Thornton are the Co-founders and Chief Adventurers of WHOA travel, a boutique adventure company that’s all about bringing women together to step out of their comfort zones and take on the world. After their first life changing climb up Mount Kilimanjaro, Allison and Danielle got the strength and courage to quit their jobs, start WHOA, and change the face of adventure travel. The unique combination of taking on an epic adventure with friends while connecting with local women changed them so profoundly they wanted more women to experience it. To date, they’ve shared over 400 adventures with women from Kilimanjaro to India to Peru, are employing and empowering women on 5 continents in the adventure travel industry, and have created a community of kickass, like minded women that spans over 20 countries.

When they’re not adventuring somewhere in the world, Allison and Danielle are based in NYC. Together, they’ve conquered 2 of the 7 summits, visited over 65 countries, stepped foot on all 7 continents, and climbed Mount Kilimanjaro over ten times…and they’re not stopping anytime soon!
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Mickela Mallozzi

Producer & Host, Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi

Mickela Mallozzi

Host, Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi & Director of Women’s Travel Fest

About

Mickela Mallozzi is the Emmy® Award-winning host and producer of Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi, a travel series airing on PBS. From re-discovering her family’s roots in Southern Italy to dancing tango in Buenos Aires, the series covers Mickela’s adventures as she experiences the world, one dance at a time. She has been featured in The New York Times, Travel Channel, Dance MagazineUSA TODAY, and American Express.

Mickela now offers Bare Feet® Dance Tours, dance-focused itineraries based on the TV series, for travelers to join her in various destinations around the globe. Follow Mickela at @TravelBareFeet or go to TravelBareFeet.com for more information.

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Arielle Tepper Madover

Founder, What Should We Do?!

Arielle Tepper Madover

Founder, What Should We Do?!

About

Arielle Tepper Madover is a lifelong New Yorker, Broadway producer, philanthropist, mother, and consummate New York City insider, who has always had her finger on the pulse of the city’s vast cultural offerings, dining, nightlife, hospitality and family activities.

A natural-born planner, she founded What Should We Do? in 2016, a personalized
planning, recommendation and booking service website and app for New Yorkers and visitors, to help make the city’s dizzying array of cultural and entertainment riches accessible and easy to enjoy to the fullest.

At 25, Arielle had become the youngest female producer in the theater industry. Her 20-year career that followed earned her multiple TONY Awards and countless other
accolades. However, Madover needed to find a new calling that gave her a renewed
sense of perplexity and curiosity – In 2017, she bravely left a successful career to
launch What Should We Do?.

Traditionally seen as the go-to expert by friends and family seeking a real New York
experience, Arielle saw an untapped opportunity in planning services for those both
living in and visiting NYC. The venture has allowed her to share her expansive
knowledge of the city’s must-sees and hidden gems alike with anyone looking to
experience them – an amenity that has never before been offered.
As the company continues to grow, Madover has assembled a team of leading experts and tastemakers who carefully curate their recommendations to offer users access to the best of the best of New York. In 2018, she plans to expand What Should We Do? to additional cities in the U.S. that are filled with their own iconic and under the radar happenings.

What Should We Do? has been featured in The New York Times, Huffington Post,
Forbes, Town and Country, Wall Street Journal, among others.
Madover currently serves as Board of The Public Theater. Throughout her career, her shows have garnered 45 Tony® Awards.

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AnneLise Sorensen

Annelise Sorensen

Writer and Reporter

About

AnneLise Sorensen: Writer and reporter AnneLise started globe-hopping early: She traveled to Cairo at two weeks old – and she’s been getting lost on purpose ever since. AnneLise grew up in North Africa, Southeast Asia (first pet was a coconut crab), and Europe (mother is Catalan, father Danish) before alighting in California to attend UC Berkeley. Since then, AnneLise has written – and wine-tasted – her way around the world, contributing to numerous outlets including New York MagazineTime Out, NBC, CNN, and Rough GuidesShe is the author of Top 10 Barcelona, as well as guides to Spain, Scandinavia, Canada, and Central America, and the inspirational tome Make the Most of Your Time on Earth. AnneLise is also a motivational speaker, a travel writing coach, and the host of the lecture and web series, Travel Transforms, on how travel can be a catalyst for change in your life. Along the way, AnneLise canoed the rivers of Borneo; climbed Mayan temples under moonlight; and solo-backpacked through India, with a questionable detour to Goa’s interpretive-dance beach raves. At great personal hardship, she also took on an assignment to track down the best sangria in Spain. Many of AnneLise’s favorite adventures are not reached by plane – but by subway. She regularly travels across her home base of New York City, from sampling tapas in Manhattan to bellydancing in Brooklyn. Follow AnneLise: @AnneLiseTravels

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Andrea Ross

Founder, Journeys Within

Andrea Ross

Founder, Journeys Within

About

Andrea Ross grew up in England listening to stories of colonial Africa and the Far East. At the age of 8 she took her first solo trip to Australia to visit her aunt and she hasn’t stopped traveling since.

In 2003 Andrea moved to Cambodia, where she started Journeys Within Tour Company and Boutique Hotel based in Siem Reap (just outside the famous Angkor Wat temple complex). Since those humble beginnings, Journeys Within has established offices and tours in Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Myanmar, as well as U.S. sales offices in Truckee, California. In 2017, Journeys Within was acquired by Wild Frontiers – an award-winning adventure travel company based in the United Kingdom.

Andrea is listed on the Condé Nast Traveler Top Travel Specialists list, Travel + Leisure’s A List of Top Travel Agents, and TripAdvisor Travel Advocate Wendy Perrin’s WOW List of Trusted Travel Experts. In 2017, Andrea was named an “Outstanding Mentor in Travel and Tourism” by the trade organization Women in Travel and Tourism International (WITTI) and Journeys Within was included in Travel + Leisure’s “World’s Best” list of the Top Tour Operators in the World.

She currently splits her time between the U.S. and Southeast Asia, and travels extensively to make sure the guides, drivers and hotels used by Journeys Within are up to standard. She loves to find new and unique trips, hotels and experiences for her guests, and provide updates on trends and upcoming events to travel journalists looking for Southeast Asia information.

As the Wild Frontiers U.S. Director, Andrea oversees the expansion of Wild Frontiers’ presence in the States, while continuing to travel, speaking at clubs and schools, promoting philanthropic travel, and fundraising for Journeys Within Our Community – the non-profit arm of Journeys Within.

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Libryia Jones

Founder, Wanderist Life

Libryia Jones

Founder, Wanderist Life

About

Libryia Jones has never taken kindly to being told “no” or been content with the status quo. She founded Wanderist Life, a company that curates experiences all over the world with digital nomads for a month to a year, after being told she couldn’t take advantage of a similar program because she had a child. Libryia also co-Founded the group Wandering Moms to encourage and support moms who literally want to give their children the world. Libryia started out as an IT Project Manager and soccer mom who was tired of being anchored to one place by the “American Dream”. She uprooted her 13 year old daughter to travel the world for a year with 30 other people. Libryia’s story has been featured in Huffington Post, Black Enterprise, Ebony, Travel Noire and was a featured speaker at the 7in7 Digital Nomad conference in Barcelona. She’s currently focused on sending off the next Wander Year group in June 2018 and launching a series of web courses to help more people become location independent.

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Juliana Broste

Juliana Broste

8x Emmy-Award Winning Travel Journalist

About

Juliana Broste: “TravelingJules,” is an eight-time Emmy award winning Travel Video Journalist–a producer, shooter, writer, editor and host!  Whether you spot her in front of the camera or behind the lens, you’ll recognize this fierce female filmmaker sporting pink lipstick and an armful of camera gear!  Her adventures have taken her around the globe, from Thailand to Turkey to Tanzania and beyond!  Her work has been featured on CNN, Travel Channel, Lonely Planet, USA TODAY, Viator and, of course, her TravelingJules travel vlog!  Jules is on a mission to share amazing “things to do” around the world, inspiring travelers to discover new experiences and document them, too.  Come along for the adventure on FacebookInstagram and YouTube.  Happy travels!

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Jessica van Dop DeJesus

Founder, The Dining Traveler

Jessica van Dop DeJesus

About

Jessica van Dop DeJesus is a food and travel content creator and founder of The Dining Traveler. She began traveling over twenty years ago as a young Marine and has lived in a variety of places from Okinawa, Japan to Baghdad, Iraq. From serving as a translator in the Senegalese countryside to interviewing chefs in Peru, she loves learning about new cultures and people.

She has traveled to over fifty countries and lived in six, fueling her appetite for travel. When she’s not traveling, she’s a home with her Dutchrican family in Washington, DC. You can also see her writing in publications such as Travel Channel, Modern Luxury, Edible, Southern Living, and Telemundo.

 

Past Speakers

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Alyssa Ramos

Blogger, My Life's a Movie

Alyssa Ramos

Blogger & Influencer, My Life’s a Movie

About

Alyssa Ramos is the solo female traveler behind the blog My Life’s a Movie, and notoriously known “badass” Instagrammer of the account @MyLifesATravelMovie. She is best known for her extreme solo travels, ambitious attitude towards life, dedicated following, and token back-of-head selfies that show the place, not the face. Alyssa has been to 51 countries so far, where she most enjoys adventure and interacting with locals. She also runs a charitable foundation called Heartsleeves.org, and a travel savings and makings program called The Wanderlust Workers.

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Daria Rebenok

Co-founder and CEO of Grabr

Daria Rebenok

Co-founder and CEO of Grabr

About

As the co-founder and CEO of Grabr, the world’s first peer-to-peer delivery network, Daria Rebenok is involved in all aspects of the startup’s rapidly expanding business and actively leverages her greater expertise in strategy and marketing.
A self proclaimed “travel fanatic” and advocate for the share economy, Daria takes great pride in Grabr’s ability to establish a connection between globetrotters who want to enjoy the items they love from around the world even when they can’t travel themselves. Grabr’s mission and community is direct reflection of her passion for travel, sense of adventure, and belief in the positive affect an individual can have on another. Originally from Moscow, Russia, Daria grew up with a fascination for the world and foreign languages — learning English, Spanish, German, and Italian in addition to her already native tongue by the age of 20.

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Cailin O'Neil

Travel Blogger & Snapchat Influencer

Cailin O'Neil

Travel, video and food blogger & social media influencer

About

Cailin O’Neil is an award winning travel, video, and food blogger and has been doing so for the past 7 years. With a background in the film and TV industry she has traveled the world to over 50 countries sharing her travels and stories on her blog, youtube and social media channels. In the past year Caitlin has also taken on using Snapchat to share content and has become an expert on the topic speaking at conferences around the world all while becoming quite the influencer on the platform.

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Sarah Dodd

World Traveler, Motivational Speaker & Writer

Sarah Dodd

World Traveler, Motivational Speaker & Writer

About

Sarah Dodd is a bilingual (English/Spanish) motivational speaker and solo traveler, who is on a wild adventure around the globe.

 

She is also the founder of the bilingual website, The Nomadic Dreamer, and has a weekly radio program called “Motivation with The Nomadic Dreamer,” where she brings an uplifting message from different places around the world.

 

She’s a TEDx speaker, a writer and a risk taker who had to overcome some serious hurdles before living her dream. Ever since she was young, Sarah always had the dream to travel, but given her financial situation, she put her wanderlust on hold.  She focused on her studies and paid her way through college, until she finally earned her nursing degree.

 

In 2013 she moved to Spain, without knowing a single word of Spanish, just a few years later she gave a talk at the largest TEDx conference in Spain in Spanish.

 

Sarah’s mission in her travel is to spread a message of friendship and connection between countries and cultures through her travels around the globe. She has an exciting year of traveling ahead through South America, Europe and north Asia, where she will connect with schools, universities, non profits, tourism boards and companies in order to share and inspire in all that she has learned in her experiences around the world.

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Nneya Richards

Fashion Maven, Founding Contributing Editor at Teen Vogue

Nneya Richards

Founder of N’ A Perfect World

About

A born and raised New Yorker and global citizen, Nneya Richards is a fashion maven, starting at 15 years old as a founding contributing editor of TeenVOGUE magazine and is currently a fashion stylist & consultant and travel blogger at ‘N A Perfect World as well as an ambassador for the non-profit fashion organization, Glam4Good.
A frequent contributor to travel and fashion publications like Vogue Italia, Fathom Away, StyleCaster, TheTig.com her passion for cultural exploration – fluent in Spanish and Italian and having lived and travelled abroad extensively – and desire to see more faces and perspectives of people of colour in the travel industry led Nneya to launch ’N A Perfect World… a curated intersection of travel, food, fashion and geopolitics inspired by the global-citizen lifestyle of the millennial. And recently launching the podcast ‘Never Date A Traveler about dating and romance on the road.
Nneya Richards matriculated at Amherst College with a Bachelor of Arts in Women & Gender Studies gaining a broad range of experience in the fashion world post college at top fashion houses including BCBG MaxAzria Group, Zac Posen and Topshop and as a fashion director at the New York Observer, as well as positions oversees with Milan-based media houses. Nneya balances her love of styling and editorial work with working with up-and-coming designers and brands from the ground up aiding in branding, public relations and tastemaker and VIP seeding.

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Mickela Mallozzi

Host And Producer Of Bare Feet With Mickela Mallozzi

Mickela Mallozzi

Host and Producer of Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi

About

Mickela Mallozzi is the Emmy® Award-winning host and producer of Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi, a travel series airing on PBS. From re-discovering her family’s roots in Southern Italy to dancing tango in Buenos Aires, the series covers Mickela’s adventures as she experiences the world, one dance at a time. She has been featured in The New York Times, Travel Channel, Dance Magazine, USA TODAY, and American Express.
Mickela now offers Bare Feet® Dance Tours, dance-focused itineraries based on the TV series, for travelers to join her in various destinations around the globe. Follow Mickela at @TravelBareFeet or go to TravelBareFeet.com for more information.

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Megan McDonough

Writer, blogger, and content strategist

Megan McDonough

San Francisco-based writer, blogger and content strategist

About

She runs Bohemian Trails, an award-winning blog designed for the savvy and stylish traveler and contributes to a number of media outlets—Business Insider, WIRED, Budget Travel, Fodor’s and AFAR among others. Her lust for adventure began during a semester working for a fashion agency in London followed by a two-year stint at a record label in New York. Since then, her cultural escapades have taken her through Europe, the Middle East, Asia, the Americas and the Caribbean.

 

She has two passports (United States and Ireland), is married to an Argentine entrepreneur and considers herself a citizen of the world. Megan has worked with a number of brands to better harness the power of social media and strategic copy. Some of her credits include Hearst, Condé Nast, The New York Times, Sonia’s Travels, Wind-up Records and Driver Digital. Bohemian Trails was awarded a Travel + Leisure SMITTY for Best Use of Social Media by an Independent Travel Photo-Journalist/Videographer and is currently ranked among the Top 50 Travel Blogs in the world.

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Gillian Morris

CEO, Hitlist

Gillian Morris

CEO & Founder, Hitlist

About

Gillian Morris is the co-founder and CEO of Hitlist, an app that alerts you when there are cheap flights for your dream trips. TIME named Hitlist one of the 50 Best Apps of 2016 and the app has been recognized as a ‘Best New App’ by the app store in 83 countries. Investors include the founders of jetBlue and the former Chairman of Orbitz.

Before entering the start-up world, Gillian worked as a consultant, journalist, and educator in Turkey, China, the Gulf states, and Syria. Her work has appeared in/on the New York Times, Harvard Business Review, Buzzfeed, CNN, CNBC, TechCrunch, The Next Web, and LifeHacker.

Gillian’s work in emerging markets has made her a passionate advocate for entrepreneurship and private sector investment in the developing world. She is a proud mentor with the School of Leadership Afghanistan and Gaza Sky Geeks.
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Juliana Broste

Travel Video Journalist, Filmmaker, Producer

Juliana Broste

Travel Video Journalist

About

Emmy Award Winning Travel Video Journalist, On-Air Talent, Host, Writer, Producer, Filmmaker, Videographer, Photographer, Editor. Creates entertaining original travel and lifestyle content for television, web, and social media / marketing campaigns.

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Deidre Mathis

Author, World Traveler, Entrepreneur

Deidre Mathis

Author, World Traveler, Entrepreneur

About

Deidre Mathis could be caught jumping from towers in New Zealand, bathing rescue elephants in Thailand, zip lining in a Mexican jungle or skydiving in the States. When she’s not trekking the globe, she is well known as a budget world traveler, author, and public speaker. Deidre is well-known as a budget world traveler, author, and public speaker. She has traveled to more than 36 countries, 6 continents, and she has lived abroad in 3 of those countries. Her first book, Wanderlust: For the Young, Broke Professional has been supported in countries such as the U.A.E., China, and Australia.

This acclaimed book has been featured twice in BLACK ENTERPRISE, and she has received recognition in USA TODAY as a Modern Woman.  Other publications that have featured this book and Deidre’s inspiring story on a local and national level include Parlour Magazine, The Houston Chronicle, and Houstonia magazine.
Deidre is no stranger to television coverage, making appearances as the “go to” for travel advice and tips.  She has graced the screens of Great Day Houston, First Coast Living, WBTV CBS, Houston Living and other shows as a budget travel expert.  Women’s travel conferences and colleges and universities have welcomed Deidre as an expert keynote speaker in the area of travel.
Mathis’ claim to fame came about in 2013, when fed up with the daunting task of working a full-time job that did not fulfill her personal or professional goals, and after graduating with her master’s degree in 2013, she quit her job to embark on a travel gap year where she lived on her 12-12-12 model: 12 countries in 12 months for less than $12,000.
Deidre is excited about her latest project, the grand opening of her international hostel, Wanderlust Houston: A Texas Hostel.  This hostel will open in Houston, TX, this summer. This hostel opening will make her a history maker, as she will be the first African-American female U.S. hostel owner. The hostel will be a safe, clean, budget-friendly accommodation option for travelers all over the world.  She recently successfully completed a crowdfunding campaign where over 80 people came together to help her secure initial funding for this business endeavor.
Deidre has a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism from Florida A&M University, a master’s degree in corporate communications from Bowie State University and a graduate certificate in tourism management from George Washington University.
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Lavinia Spalding

Series Editor: Best Women's Travel Writing

Lavinia Spalding

Editor, Best Women’s Travel Writing

About

Lavinia Spalding is series editor of The Best Women’s Travel Writing, and author of two books: Writing Away: A Creative Guide to Awakening the Journal-Writing Traveler, and With a Measure of Grace, the Story and Recipes of a Small Town Restaurant. Her work has appeared in numerous print and online publications, including Sunset magazine, Yoga Journal, The San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco magazine, The Guardian UK, Tin House, Post Road, Inkwell Journal, Overnight Buses, Off Assignment, and Every Day with Rachael Ray, and has been anthologized in The Best Travel Writing Volumes 9 and 10 (Travelers’ Tales), Days Like This (Independent Bookstore Day), and An Innocent Abroad (Lonely Planet). Lavinia also introduced the e-book edition of Edith Wharton’s classic travelogue, A Motor-Flight Through France. She recently moved to New Orleans, where she is working on becoming an expert on all things oyster.  

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Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie

Founder of The Globetrotting Teacher Travel Blog

Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie

About

Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie is the Founder of The Globetrotting Teacher Travel Blog and an Award Travel Coach who helps others earn and use miles and points to reach their travel goals.

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Alyson Kilday

Co-Founder of Hop & Jaunt and Damesly

Alyson Kilday

Co-Founder Hop & Jaunt and Damesly

About

Co-Founder/CEO of Hop & Jaunt, an independent creative agency based in New Orleans. Alyson Kilday has over 10 years of experience bringing to life brands and projects for both multi-nationals and startups.

Creative, energetic, and global would be the three words used to describe her the most. She’s passionate about the work, the projects she’s involved with, and the clients she gets to work with. Always on the lookout for new projects to bring to life.

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Courtney Scott

Travel Blogger, Filmmaker at Courtney Scott, Co-Founder of Girls Meet Globe.

Courtney Scott

Travel Blogger, Filmmaker at Courtney Scott, Co-Founder of Girls Meet Globe

About

Once confined to a New York City cubicle, Courtney Scott dreamed of a life less regular. In 2007, with a one-way ticket in hand, she quit her job, moved to Italy and started a blog while teaching English to support her dream. At that time there were only a few dozen female travel blogs out there. She got to know the industry from its inception and hasn’t looked back since. Now she travels for a living as a travel blogger, filmmaker and leading on-air travel expert. Courtney has been featured in over 400 travel interviews including national broadcast segments on CNN, The Today Show, ABC as well as interviews with Refinery 29, Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.
 
In 2015, she co-founded Girls Meet Globe, an Instagram community founded on the idea that “one woman can make a difference, but together we can conquer the world.” What began as an experiment has evolved into a destination where nearly 100,000 women come to get inspiration from the most epic girls trips in the world.
 
This will be Courtney’s third year as a Women’s Travel Fest panelist! Follow her travels on Instagram!
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Marcia DeSanctis

Author, 100 Places in France Every Woman Should Go

Marcia De Sanctis

Best-Selling Author “100 Places in France Every Woman Should Go”

About

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Scott Eddy

Mega-Influencer

Scott Eddy

Scott is one of the top 10 luxury travel influencers, who routinely works with brands all around the world.

About

From Miami, Scott spent 10 years working on Wall Street before becoming one of the top 10 luxury travel influencers in the industry. Today, @MrScottEddy is at the top of his game, working with brands from all around the world.

This is is his second time speaking at Women’s Travel Fest.

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