Newscaster, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) London, United Kingdom
Adnan Nawaz is a News Anchor for BBC World News, working from the Corporation’s London headquarters. He presents and analyses the world’s most important stories and broadcasts daily to millions of viewers around the globe.
A graduate of the London School of Economics, with a postgraduate degree in Latin American Politics from the University of London, his journalism career includes time as an award winning radio producer for a BBC programme examining the British press. Having worked at the BBC since 1992, he has spent the past 16 years in TV.
Born in Pakistan with British citizenship, he has lived on four different continents and speaks five languages. He has hosted international conferences and meetings in Asia, Europe and the United States across a range of subjects and industries, all with an international angle, including development, telecommunications, sport, food, travel and medicine.
CEO, Rezgo.com Vancouver, BC, Canada
Stephen has been working as a travel & tourism technology consultant since 1995. In 2007, his company launched Rezgo, a cloud based software as a service tour and activity booking engine for small and medium sized tour operators. Stephen travels extensively and believes strongly in the lasting economic benefits of local experiences. Rezgo was developed to provide small local tourism businesses with the capabilities to harness their potential and take full advantage of new and emerging technologies.
He was the Chair of the Open Travel Alliance for five years and is passionate about travel technology and distribution. Stephen loves public speaking and speaks regularly at conferences around the World. He is always happy to share his experiences and knowledge and contributes frequently to Tnooz.com, a leading travel technology media website.
In addition to his tourism initiatives, he is an active participant in ongoing business improvement in his community and was a Past-Chair of the Board of Directors of the North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors for the Coho Society, and a member of the Board of Directors for the Pacific Club for three years.
Travel Journalist and Author of The Six-Figure Travel Writing Road Map
Gabi Logan is a travel journalist and author. Through regular features and columns in trade and consumer publications, from USA Today and The Dallas Morning News to Group Travel Leader and Corporate and Incentive Travel, Gabi highlights small businesses and travel experiences that transmit a sense of place to the visitor through powerful interpretation, storytelling, and local connections.
In addition to her journalism, Gabi is the founder of Dream of Travel Writing, a company that offers products and services that help travel writers grow their income, product better stories, and spread the power of transformative travel, and the Rosewood Writing Retreat Center, a year-round workshop and residency space for writers and other creative entrepreneurs in the Catskill Mountains.
Content Strategy and Development Lead for Princess Cruises, Santa Clarita, California, USA
Benjamin Brown serves as Content Strategy and Development Lead for Princess Cruises, located in Santa Clarita, CA. In a dynamic role that runs the gamut of hospitality marketing, Ben brings together teams from across the globe to manage a multi-million dollar budget and maximize content ROI. When he’s not at Princess, Ben focuses his efforts on the restaurant world as a consultant and writer. He serves as Restaurant Editor for SoCal Food & Beverage Professional Magazine, as well as contributes to its sister publication in Las Vegas. Ben’s own blog, Foodie Biz, covers restaurant business tips and industry news. Previously, Ben spent time with MGM Resorts International and NBC Universal, working in Strategic Operations and Analytics. He also served with the Teach for America program for three years, where he led classrooms in inner-city Las Vegas and ran a nonprofit dedicated to nutrition education. Ben earned his MBA from USC’s Marshall School of Business, with concentrations in Marketing and Analytics. He has a Master’s in Education from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and a BA in Journalism from USC’s Annenberg School of Journalism. A passionate foodie and traveler, Ben has worked with more than 300 restaurants across 35+ countries and interviewed a multitude of celebrity chefs, TV personalities and hospitality executives.
CEO, Consumers Everywhere, Portland, OR, USA
Risa Blumen Meynarez is a strategic marketing and branding executive who has connected consumers and brands at several premier entertainment and sports companies including CNN, the Atlanta Braves and TBS. Currently residing in Portland, Oregon, Risa helped till the fertile ground of Revolution at Rogue Ales & Spirits. At Rogue she advanced sales with singular stories, put Rogue Farms on the map as a tourist destination and sowed a taste for crazy partnerships by working with brands like Voodoo Doughnuts and Ben & Jerry’s. Risa’s recent consultation with Arizona State University utilizes a food-centric app to drive daily student interaction. Risa is regarded as an expert on consumer research, especially of the millennial generation.
Executive Director, World Food Travel Association, Portland, OR, USA
Erik Wolf is the visionary founder of the world’s food tourism industry, and of the Association. He is a highly sought speaker, thought leader, strategist and consultant, in the US and abroad, on food and drink tourism issues, and is considered the go-to food tourism industry resource for media outlets that have included CNN, the BBC, the Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, NBC, Forbes, PeterGreenberg.com, Huffington Post, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and many more. His works have been published in dozens of languages. Erik also advises to UNESCO’s Creative Cities Network gastronomy program and the UNWTO’s Gastronomy Network.
Writer ~ Author ~ Speaker ~ Radio Host ~ Consultant ~ Culinary Storyteller
In the Summer of 2011, Steven stood in a dirt driveway in Southeast Portland and decided to bootstrap his way to a new life. He declared that he was going to take his writing seriously and become an Author, a Speaker, and an active part of the Portland Culinary Community. Just a few short years later, Steven has done that and more. He published Portland Food Cart Stories April 2014, and Portland Beer Stories June 2015. He is now working on his next two culinary books —Portland Coffee Stories and Donut Tales and Oregon Wine Stories. He also has a cookbook in the works – Beer Drinkers Cookbook. He hosts his own weekly radio show – Tasty Tuesday on 99.1 FM Portland Radio Project. Steven is highly-sought advisor and consultant, especially in social media, to many food and beverage businesses.
Actor & Director
Chase Ramsey is a freelance director and actor living in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is the founder and creator of Warboy Theatre Projects, a Provo, Utah-based non-profit theatre company based around producing unconventional new works. For the tourism world, Chase is best known as Host of the California Dream Eater “mini-series”. The Dream Eater series has been a runaway success for Visit California for its innovation in getting off the beaten path. Chase is also a host on The Food Network.