Seven Natural Wonders has gathered some of the most reputable experts in global exploration, conservation, and nature. These individuals have traveled the world, explored the grandeur of our globe and they are committed to the natural wonders of the earth on a regular basis.
Additionally, SNW is looking to strengthen the committee with other experts who offer valuable insights in the natural wonders of the world. If you are an individual who is passionate about the wonders of nature and have educated insights or expertise to enhance the committee's efforts, please Contact Us. You may also recommend someone in the same fashion.
Bruno D’Amicis a renowned photographer focusing on the wild with specialties in mountain and wildlife photography. He is a biologist committed to conservation and leveraging his photography to communicate the message and inspire people to love the wonders of nature. He is a member of the International League of Conservation Photographers, the German photographic organization GDT, and his work has been published in National Geographic, GEO, BBC Wildlife and Terre Sauvage. Bruno just recently published his book, The Last Stronghold: Fifteen years in the company of bear.
Dr. Arturo Curiel Ballesteros is the IUCN Regional Vice Chair for Mesoamerica for the Committee on Education and Communication. He is the Director of the Institute for the Environment and Human Communities of the University of Guadalajara. He is also a researcher for Biology, Ecosystem Services and Environmental Health. As a professor and researcher Dr. Ballesteros is committed to conservation and sustainability of the world’s natural environments.
Rich Beattie is the Executive Editor of TravelandLeisure.com and former Content Director of the adventure travel site GORP.com. His passion for the outdoors has led to assignments on sailing the Amazon and diving the Barrier Reef; he’s also written about becoming a game ranger in South Africa, following hunter-gatherers through Borneo, and playing elephant polo in Thailand.
Beth Beloff, Founder and President of BRIDGES to Sustainability Institute, has been engaged in developing approaches to sustainable development for over 20 years and currently serves as a sustainability consultant through Beth Beloff & Associates. She has authored numerous writings on sustainability, including the book “Transforming Sustainability Strategy into Action.” She has been on the board of Sustainable Travel International (STI) since its inception. Beth’s passion is photography, photojournalism and exploration, in large part to find ways to protect those natural environments and cultures that depend on them through stories and images of those special places.
Dr. Cheryl Charles is a IUCN Regional Councilor and Vice Chair for North America. She is the President, CEO and Co-Founder of the Children & Nature Network and committed to connecting children through nature globally through regional efforts. Prior to launching C&NN, Dr. Charles was the Director of the Learning Tree Project and Project WILD two of the most widely used curriculums for students ages K through 12th grade. Cheryl is committed to nature and the environment and speaks regularly across the country on the importance of connecting kids with nature.
Alexandra Cousteau, Founder and President of Blue Legacy International, is committed to advocating the critical importance of managing our water resources in order to preserve a healthy planet. She is a National Geographic Emerging Explorer and continues the work of her father and grandfather by leveraging new and emerging technologies to help mainstream audiences experience the stories of our “water planet.” She learned to scuba dive at the age of 7 under the guidance of her grandfather legendary Jacques Cousteau.
Katalin Czippan is the European vice chair of IUCN Commission on Education and Communication, and works for the parliamentary commissioner for future generation. She works on the field of environmental education almost 25 years. In the past 10 years she has been focusing on education for sustainability and global education for all ages. She supported the establishment of the Learning Organizations for Sustainability Foundation Hungary with a mission that reflects her views and goals, “to contribute to regenerate system approach based, ecologically conscious, sustainable societies through supporting competency based personal and organizational learning which opens the heart, stimulates the mind and lifts the spirit”.
Susan Day, President of the North American Nature Photography Association, is recognized as a backyard wildlife and habitat expert and is co-author of “The Wildlife Gardener’s Guide to Hummingbirds & Songbirds From the Tropics.” She has published dozens of articles on a variety of nature and travel subjects. She has been a professional nature and travel photographer for 20 years and is co-owner of Daybreak Imagery. Susan leads photo workshops alongside her husband, Richard Day, as well as delivering interactive presentations that teach habitat restoration.
Dr. Gerald Dick, as the Executive Director of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, is committed to the conservation of global biodiversity. He previously worked with the World Wildlife Fund and on reforestation projects in Nicaragua. He is a member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and shares headquarter offices with IUCN showing that a sustainable work place is viable, comfortable and affordable.
Julia Dimon is a TV host, travel journalist and adventuress who’s been around the world to over 80 countries. Co-creator and co-host of Word Travels, her show is featured internationally on National Geographic Adventure, Travel Channel UK, OLN, Outside Television and the Halogen Network. She also hosts Destination Getaway, an 18-part travel series for MSNBC and co-hosts the new daily show Outside Today. She has been featured as a travel expert for ABC, NBC, Forbes Traveler and is a keynote speaker for the New York Times Travel Show. Her shares her travel tips, advice and adventures at www.traveljunkiejulia.com
Jack Dykinga A Pulitzer Prize winning photographer that leverages his photography expertise to create award winning images and documentaries. He has authored over nine different photography and image books and is a regular contributor to Arizona Highways and the National Geographic magazine. Jack is committed to conservation and protection of the natural wonders which is reflected in his work through the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) over the past five years. His image, “Stone Canyon” was selected as one of the forty best Nature Photographs of all time by the iLCP and in 2011 he was awarded the Outstanding Photographer of the Year from the Nature Photographers of North America.
Richard Edward is the Director of Planeterra, a non-profit dedicated to supporting sustainable community development through travel. Planeterra was founded by Gap Adventures where Richard serves as a member of the executive management assisting in the support of partnerships with leaders like Discovery Communications, Expedia, and STA Travel. He currently serves on the board of The International Ecotourism Society and on committees for the Global Sustainable Tourism Council. With 20 years of experience, he is cited regularly as an expert on sustainable travel and tourism on CNN, MSNBC, NG Adventure, NG Traveler, and Travel & Leisure.
Amy Farley is a senior editor at Travel + Leisure. For the last several years, she has spearheaded the magazine’s coverage of environmental and social justice issues, exploring how travel can be a force for good in the world. She has produced the magazine’s special November “Responsible Travel” issue, and developed the annual Global Vision Awards, which recognize people and organizations that are harnessing travel to help with environmental conservation, cultural preservation, and economic development.
Dr. Julian Fennessy is the Director of the Namibian Nature Foundation, one the largest and most respected conservation NGOs in the subregion. Working across a range of sectors including CBNRM, wildlife management, forestry, fisheries, sustainable land management and protected area management, NNF works to promote sustainable development, the conservation of biological diversity and natural ecosystems, and the wise and ethical use of natural resources for the benefit of all Namibians. Julian has significant experience in protected area management in both Australia and across Africa, and in addition, is the Chair (and founding member) of the IUCN SSC ASG International Giraffe Working Group and founder of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation.
Dr. John Francis John Francis serves as Vice President for Research, Conservation, and Exploration at the National Geographic Society, directing funding of these disciplines through the Committee for Research and Exploration, the Conservation Trust, and the Expeditions Council, Young Explorers, and Waitt grants programs. Francis also serves on committees and boards for the National Park System, UNESCO, and the IUCN. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Cruz and spent five years as a postdoctoral fellow and research associate at the Smithsonian Institution studying the behavioral ecology of marine mammals. Since his beginning roles as grantee and then producer of wildlife films for National Geographic, he has worked to enhance connections between the scientific/conservation community and the public.
Pauline Frommer is the creator of the Pauline Frommer Guidebooks. She started her footloose life traveling with her guidebook writing parents at the age of four months, which means she’s had a lot of time to gawk in astonishment and delight at this planet’s innumerable natural wonders (a favorite pastime of hers to this day).
Dr. Frank Gill is the President of Audubon. Prior to taking the helm of Audubon, he spent 25 years at the Academy of Natural Sciences. He has a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Michigan and expedition travel to remote corners of the globe is one of his favorite diversions.
Dr. Brahim Haddane is the IUCN Regional Councillor for Africa and the Vice Chair of the CEC. He is also a member of the World Commission on Protected Areas and the SSC Steering Committee. He earned a Master of Science in Animal Biology and Nature Conservancy and a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicines. He is committed to conservation which is reflected in his research and numerous scientific publications, lectures to university students, and national reports. President of Audubon. Prior to taking the helm of Audubon, he spent 25 years at the Academy of Natural Sciences.
Tom Hall is Travel Editor and a spokesperson at Lonely Planet, working out of the company’s London office. He is the writer of the weekly Ask Tom feature in The Observer (UK) travel section, and also contributes to a host of other magazines and newspapers in the UK, Ireland and Europe. Tom is a regular commentator on travel news and events in the media, including BBC Breakfast, Radio One, Sky News, CNN and Six Music. He is the editor of the forthcoming Lonely Planet’s Best Ever Travel Tips book as well as contributing to guidebooks and custom print books, and is a Contributing Editor for Lonely Planet where he writes, blogs and podcasts.
Kyle Hammons is a freelance travel writer and photographer who has spent the better part of the past ten years traveling throughout the United States and more than twenty countries abroad. His writing and photography is featured in books, magazines, movies, websites, catalogs and galleries, both in the U.S. and internationally. When he’s not bouncing around the world on ramshackle buses, overcrowded trains, or on the back of a rickshaw, you can find him eagerly planning the next adventure.
Arend de Haas, co-founder and Conservation Director of the Africa Conservation Foundation, is a wildlife ecologist with over 15 years of experience with conservation and sustainable community projects. As part of his work, he travelled to some of the most remote places in Africa, Asia and Europe. Currently he is involved in great ape and rainforest conservation, reforestation and tree planting programs in East and West Central Africa. He is also an avid photographer and outdoor sportsman.
Eric Hebert-Daly,National Executive Director of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, has worked with municipal, regional and national groups across Canada with a focused attention on ecological and conservation issues. He has traveled extensively in North America with an affinity for the northern regions from Labrador to Inuvik. He engages nature and the environment regularly with his hiking, canoeing, cross-country skiing and camping.
Sheila Barr Holman, Vice President of Marketing for Travel Channel Media, is committed to driving marketing efforts in support of the larger integrated travel media business in the areas of interactive, online, mobile and VOD. She has been instrumental in many of the Travel Channel’s programming including Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, Man V. Food, and the Samantha Brown franchise. Traveling and exploring the globe is one of her leading activities when it comes to free time.
Dr. Phillip Imler is the Founder and President of Seven Natural Wonders. His first international exploration occurred in the Swiss Alps as a freshman in high school, and it has been nonstop discovery ever since. Dr. Imler has 12 years experience in the travel industry and he has been an avid nature photographer for over 30 years. He has 13 years of experience managing non-profits. He leverages his travel industry and non-profit management experience to strategically guide the conservation efforts of Seven Natural Wonders. Trekking through the Canadian Rockies, hanging with penguins in Australia, and flying microlites over Victoria Falls are just some of the adventures that have taken him to six of the seven continents.
Sonia Jackson has been a National Geographic fan since she was 7 years old and achieved her dream as she has now worked for them for 11 years. After gaining a degree in Biology and Psychology from a university in the UK, she spent four months living in the Amazon rainforest. Sonia has traveled extensively throughout Latin America, Europe, Asia, and Africa with conquests such as climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, traveling the length of Chile and spending many months on nature reserves in Africa. She has lived in Spain, Chile, the UK, Brazil, Portugal, Japan and Hong Kong.
Dr. Thomas Lovejoy, Ph.D. currently serves as the Biodiversity Chair at the Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment and was elected University Professor at George Mason in March 2010. He has been committed to the environment serving as an ecologist in the Brazilian Amazon since 1965 and is responsible for coining the term, “Biological Diversity.” He served on advisory councils in the Reagan, Bush, and Clinton administrations. In 2009, he was appointed Conservation Fellow by the National Geographic Society. He received his B.S. and Ph.D. in Biology from Yale University. He chairs the Scientific and Technical Panel for the Global Environment Facility which provides funding related to the international environmental conventions.
Todd McClamroch, as the Chief Executive Officer of iExplore, is someone who has been inspired to travel by the excitement of seeing and learning something new. His favorite travel experiences include dancing in Carnival in Rio, watching Aussie Rules Football in Sydney & Melbourne, kayaking the Kenai Fjords in Alaska and walking the history-rich avenues of many European and South American cities. He will visit his sixth Continent this fall when he partakes on an Antarctica Expedition.
Cristina Goettsch Mittermeier is a Mexican-born photographer and conservationist. Working out of Washington, DC, she has coedited 17 award–winning books dealing with conservation of biodiversity and done in partnership with international conservation organizations like Conservation International and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. As a photographer, her work focuses on the intersection between humans and nature and it aims to explain the complex issues that surrounding conservation issues and human needs. Cristina is the also founder and President of the prestigious International League of Conservation Photographers, a consortium of some of the best photographers on the planet who are actively working for conservation.
Dr. Russell Mittermeier has been serving as the President of Conservation International since 1989. He holds a Ph.D. in Biological Anthropology from Harvard University and serves as an Adjunct Professor at the State University of New York. He also currently serves as IUCN Council Vice-President and IUCN Regional Councillor for North America. Dr. Mittermeier has authored more than 400 scientific and popular articles and 20 books. His travels and conservation efforts have taken him to over 100 countries around the world.
Holly Morris is the founder of Adventure Divas, Inc., and is writer/director/host/exec producer and all around creative heavy of Adventure Divas, the award-winning PBS documentary series. Morris also works as a correspondent for the television series’ “Outdoor Investigations,” “Lonely Planet Treks in America,” “Treks in a Wild World,” and “Globe Trekker” and “National Geographic Today.” In these programs she’s scaled the Matterhorn and lassoed reindeer in sub-zero Lapland; fended off jealous elephants in India’s Andaman Islands, entered a camel race against in the middle of Niger’s Sahara, and flicked off endless numbers of Indonesian leeches.
Brian Mullis, Founder and CEO of Sustainable Travel International (STI), is recognized as an expert in sustainable tourism from his 21 years of experience in the travel and tourism industry. Prior to launching STI, he invested in the environment by serving in the US National Parks system and as the President of The World Outdoors, an international travel company specializing in active and eco-travel. His work has taken him to more than 35 countries across five continents including some of the world’s best examples of sustainable tourism. He has a Master’s degree in Recreation Management.
Harriett Nimmo is a IUCN Regional Councillor and Vice Chair for Europe. She is the Chief Executive Officer for Wildscreen, an organization working globally to to promote an appreciation of biodiversity and nature through the power of wildlife imagery. Wildscreen spreads its message through five inter-related programmes of activity, working with the world’s very best filmmakers and photographers, as well as educators and the public across the globe.
Dr. Suzana Padau, is in the IUCN Commission on Education and Communication for many years, and now its Vice Chair for S. America. She is the President of IPE, the Institute of Ecological Research located in Brazil. She is committed to and recognized as an expert in conservation education and sustainable development. She helped launch the Brazilian Center for Conservation Biology that equips Brazilian and other Latin American conservationists with the skills to be more effective in their efforts to protect the environment. This Center has recently expanded to an innovative Master’s program.
Dr. Cristián Samper is the Director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. As director of the National Museum of Natural History, Samper is responsible for the largest natural history collection in the world and a museum that welcomes more than six million visitors each year. He sits on the boards of the Nature Conservancy and the World Wildlife Fund. Dr. Samper earned a Ph.D. in biology from Harvard University. He has been invested in nature and conservationism for over 18 years.
Robert Reid is the Americas spokesperson and travel editor for Lonely Planet. He is one of their most diversely traveled authors, having updated two dozen guidebooks including New York City, Europe, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, Central America, Colombia, Trans-Siberian Railway and Myanmar (Burma). His writings have also appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and ESPN, and he’s appeared on NPR and CNN International. He produces the weekly show ‘The 76-Second Travel Show.’ Originally from Oklahoma, Robert has lived in London, San Francisco, Melbourne and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Lonely Planet believes that ‘responsible travel’ means assessing our impact on the environment and local cultures and economies – and acting to make that impact as positive as possible.
Peter Seligmann is the Co-Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Conservation International. Mr. Seligmann has been a leading expert in international conservationism for over 34 years. He holds a masters degree from Yale University’s School of Forestry and Environmental Science and a B.S. in Wildlife Ecology from Rutgers University. With active field offices in over 40 countries around the world, he is well invested in the natural wonders of the world.
Dr. Bradley Smith is the IUCN Regional Vice Chair for North America for the Committee on Education and Communication. He is the Dean of Huxley College of the Environment at Western Washington University. Prior to this he served as the Director of the Office of Environmental Education for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. He holds additional adjunct faculty positions in Russia, China, Holland, England and Japan. Dr. Smith is also serving as a Trustee of the National Environmental Education and Training Foundation.
Dominic Stucker is the Network Coordinator with the USA-based Living Planet Network and serves as a Regional Vice Chair on the Steering Committee of the IUCN’s Commission on Education and Communication. He is a young sustainability professional and practitioner with expertise in environmental security, sustainable livelihoods, and intergenerational partnerships. Mr Stucker has previously worked as the International Youth Coordinator at Earth Charter in Costa Rica and with International development organizations in central Asia. He holds Master’s degrees in Environmental Security and Peace from the UN-mandated University of Peace, and the Art of Teaching from Brown University.
Adam Sutherland, as the Vice President of Strategy & Business Development, leads the Travel Channel Media’s strategic shift into new areas beyond television. Including digital partnerships, mobile, Travel Channel Academy, and Travel Channel Studios, Adam and his team leverage existing and newly developed assets to expand the Travel Channel brand into new businesses. He has lived and worked overseas with such companies as Discovery Communications, Ogilvy & Mather, McKinsey & Company, and Encyclopedia Britannica. Fluent in Japanese, Adam has traveled extensively in Asia, Europe and Latin America. He is an avid SCUBA diver and a novice underwater photographer.
Keith Wheeler, is the IUCN Chair of the World Conservation Committee on Education and Communication.He is also the Chairman and CEO of ZedX Inc, a global environmental and sustainable agricultural knowledge management company. He is the President of the Board of Directors of the Foundation for our Future, an organization committed to national and international conservation by integrating science and technology into tools and resources that foster sustainable solutions. He has a graduate degree in environmental and soil sciences from Cornell University. He has committed his life to advancing conservation and sustainability through public presentations, university lectures, numerous peer reviewed journal articles, and his most recent book on sustainability.
Jeff Willner is the President and Founder of Kensington Tours, a personal tour company created from years of experience both as a travel expert and a personal explorer. As a member of the Royal Geographic Society, Jeff has been an intrepid explorer with expeditions to over 70 countries and six continents. Jeff has had a lifelong appreciation of the natural wonders of this world with opportunities to explore many of them through his travels.
Dr. Juliane Zeidler is an IUCN Regional Councilor for Africa and for the IUCN Commission on Education and Communication (CEC). She is the Co-Founder of the Integrated Environmental Consultants of Namibia (IECN) and the Natuye Institute for the Environment. She is recognized as an expert in biodiversity research, natural resources management, community development, environmental politics and sustainable development. She is a senior consultant to UNDP/GEF and assists governments in Africa to develop national programs on biodiversity conservation, climate change adaptation, and sustainable land and water management.z