Schedule & Speakers
All programming will be held in A601-A602 unless otherwise noted.
|Monday, October 24, 2022|
|8:45 AM - 5:00 PM||
• 8:00am-8:45am: Breakfast in room L506-L507
|2:00 PM - 6:00 PM||Registration Open|
|5:45 PM - 6:30 PM||
Transportation to Welcome Reception
Rolling transfers begin at 6:00 PM in the hotel lobby.
|5:45 PM - 7:45 PM||
Board of Directors Dinner
Meet in the lobby at 5:45pm to transfers to dinner before the Welcome Reception. This event is invite only.
|6:30 PM - 8:00 PM||
Dine Around Ponce City Market
Grab some colleagues and friends to enjoy dinner on your own from one of the many local Atlanta pop-up restaurants at this historic landmark market. Book your reservations in advance.
|8:00 PM - 10:00 PM||
Join us for our welcome reception on the roof of Ponce City Market for an evening of drinks, bites, and...carnival games! Yes, that's right! Celebrate the kickoff of PBS with games, vintage amusements, mini golf, drinks and fun!
|Tuesday, October 25, 2022|
|8:00 AM - 9:15 AM||
Corporate Advisory Council Meeting (CAC Members Only)
|8:30 AM - 5:15 PM||
Location: 600s Foyer
|9:00 AM - 9:30 AM||Breakfast, Networking & Doors Open|
|9:30 AM - 11:00 AM||
All programming will be held in A601-A602 unless otherwise noted.
|11:00 AM - 11:30 AM||Coffee Break|
|11:30 AM - 1:00 PM||
*** TRAVEL HEALTH, WELL-BEING, AND SAFETY ***
|1:00 PM - 2:30 PM||Break for Lunch|
|2:30 PM - 4:00 PM||
*** ON THE HORIZION ***
|4:00 PM - 4:30 PM||Coffee Break|
|4:30 PM - 5:00 PM||
*** ASTA GREEN PARTNER IN TRAVEL AWARD ***
|6:00 PM - 6:15 PM||
Transportation to Evening Event at Porsche Experience Center
Location: Hotel Lobby
|6:30 PM - 9:00 PM||
Evening Event at Porsche Experience Center
6:30 – 7:30 PM:
|9:00 PM - 9:30 PM||Transportation to Hotel|
|Wednesday, October 26, 2022|
|7:30 AM - 9:15 AM||
Consortia Committee Meeting
|8:30 AM - 11:00 AM||
Location: 600s Foyer
|9:00 AM - 9:30 AM||Breakfast, Networking & Doors Open|
|9:30 AM - 11:30 AM||
*** THE LATEST FROM CAPITOL HILL ***
|11:30 AM - 12:00 PM||Coffee Break|
|12:00 PM - 1:00 PM||
*** ASTA TRAVEL COURT ***
|1:00 PM - 2:00 PM||Farewell Lunch|
Schedule is tentative.
Meet our Speakers
With her unique blend of Southern charm, humor, and hospitality, Denella Ri’chard is a world traveler, TV personality, travel industry executive, travel lifestyle influencer, and entrepreneur. With numerous travel and hospitality awards (including a 2022 Silver Telly Award) she leverages her experience and expertise to excite viewers to stop dreaming and start traveling.
Dr. Henry Ting MD, MBA
World-renowned cardiologist Dr. Henry Ting joined Delta Air Lines in 2021 as the global brand’s SVP and Chief Health Officer – a first for a U.S. airline. In his most recent role as Mayo Clinic’s enterprise Chief Value Officer, Dr. Ting provided vision and strategic leadership to enable Mayo Clinic to be the world’s most trusted health care system. Dr. Ting’s teams oversaw quality of care, patient safety, patient experience, and affordability.
Is the Director, Global Wellbeing at Delta Air Lines. In this role, Allison leads the creation of effective and best-in-class well-being tools and programs for Delta employees, customers and communities. With a passion for both Delta and well-being, Allison is creating programs and experiences that drive positive outcomes, strong engagement, and greater brand affinity for our people and our customers.
As ASTA’s president and chief executive officer Zane Kerby reports directly to the board of directors on all internal and external ASTA business and is the primary spokesperson for ASTA. Kerby moved to ASTA from a successful career with the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA). Beginning in 2009 he held the position of senior vice president with responsibility for all aspects of GBTA’s global annual convention. Previously he was Deputy Executive Director, Vice President of business development and held a series of other posts of progressively greater responsibility beginning in August, 1999. Kerby earned a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Arts from Brigham Young University. He and his wife have five children and he currently is an assistant coach of a U12 basketball team. Cycling, swimming and reading are just a few of his favorite activities.
Bill Taylor is a best-selling author, celebrated entrepreneur, and groundbreaking thinker who shows organizations and their leaders how to compete, innovate, and win—during times of growth as well as times of crisis. He made his name as co-founder and founding editor of Fast Company, one of the most influential magazines of the last two decades. Fast Company has won countless awards, from “Startup of the Year” in its early days to “Magazine of the Year,” the highest honor in its field, and has earned a passionate following among executives and entrepreneurs around the world. Its editorial success led to great business success. A company that began in borrowed office space in Harvard Square eventually sold for $340 million—the second-highest price for a single magazine is U.S. history. Fast Company recently celebrated its twenty-fifth anniversary and continues to shape the global conversation about business.
Lauri is passionate about connecting stakeholders throughout the travel ecosystem and sees Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC) as the industry leader for data insights, flexible distribution services and innovative financial solutions. She works closely with the executive team in leading ARC’s mission to accelerate the growth of global air travel. Lauri has spent more than three decades in the industry because she believes in travel’s power and potential to connect the world. She began her career with a short stint at American Airlines before moving to the agency side of the business at Gelco Travel, now part of Concur. She then spent 16 years in global customer success management with SatoTravel/TQ3 Navigant before joining ARC in 2005. Lauri hails from northern Wisconsin. She’s an avid traveler and now lives (and explores the world) with her family in Northern Virginia.
Mark joined the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) in April 2015 and as Senior Vice President Marketing, Industry Affairs & Education has a broad focus on marketing ASTA, its sub-brands, events, products, and services. He also represents the travel agency and consumer communities within all components of the travel industry – travel suppliers, technology providers, coalitions and trade associations, government entities such as the U.S. DOT (U.S. Department of Transportation), and the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) and more. Mark is the driving force behind much of the highly-rated content of ASTA’s annual Global Convention and Premium Business Summits being responsible for ASTA’s educational efforts, fostering agency growth and learning worldwide. While monitoring industry issues and trends, Mark advocates for promotes and defends the agency community to ensure the agent’s voice is heard clearly and the agent is well represented within all components of the industry. Mark also serves on the Board of Directors of the WTAAA – the World Travel Agents Associations Alliance – where he functions as Vice-Chair – an organization facilitating the exchange of ideas and information to the agency community across the globe.
With 12+ years as a top producer in sales team leadership and individual account management roles, Kier Matthews is an accomplished sales expert who specializes in driving revenue growth, brand awareness, and market share within the highly competitive luxury travel sector. Most recently, as Director of Sales at Classic Vacations, Matthews led an 11-member team in generating $200M+ in annual sales throughout 27 U.S. states—as well as Canada—personally managing the company’s highest-profile accounts at AMEX, Virtuoso, and Signature. Prior to this role, he led a mix of B2B/B2C travel sales and marketing functions as Vice President of Sales at Europe Express, in addition to holding tenure as Manager of Member Sales & Service at Virtuoso, the industry’s top luxury travel network. While at Virtuoso, Matthews championed the launch of numerous innovative new products, services, and marketing initiatives to expand the company’s reach and revenue potential—including piloting a new social media training solution that taught travel agents and suppliers on how to leverage social media effectively to grow their business.
Since 2017, Eben Peck has served as Executive Vice President, Advocacy at the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA), where is he responsible for ASTA's work to advocate for the travel agency community at all levels of government, within the travel industry and before the traveling public. This includes management of ASTA's Government Affairs, Industry Affairs, Communications, Legal and Research functions, and ranges from day-to-day association management to federal/state government affairs to interaction with national and trade media, travel suppliers and industry groups to content for ASTA's annual conference and other events. From 2012 to 2017, he served as ASTA's Vice President, Government Affairs and Senior Vice President, Government & Public Affairs, with a heavy focus on the Society's core advocacy functions – federal and state lobbying, regulatory compliance and ASTA's political action committee.
Seth Wayne is a two-time Emmy Award-winning travel expert who turned his passion for cruising and excitement for fostering the guest experience into an escorted group business. Prior to founding Sail with Seth in 2022, Wayne was brand ambassador for Holland America Line where he showcased the premium cruise line through social media content creation, event hosting, loyalty enhancement and several successful escorted group cruises. A skilled communicator, Wayne spent 20 years as a television personality on stations across the United States, from Alaska to Kansas; Arizona to Oregon. Most notability he was a meteorologist, anchor and travel reporter for ABC affiliate KOMO-TV in Seattle, Washington. Born and raised in South Florida, Wayne took his first cruise at the age of seven and has been exploring the world ever since. Preceding his television career, his love of travel led him to become a Travel Advisor where he guided his clients to book their dream vacation to destinations across the globe.
Peter Lobasso has served as ASTA’s General Counsel since 2015. Prior to joining ASTA, Peter was a Managing Attorney for Berenson LLP, a specialty law firm based in Great Falls, Virginia. In practice for over twenty years, Peter has successfully represented clients in a wide variety of litigated matters before courts and administrative agencies at both the state and federal levels. Peter has also negotiated numerous multi-million dollar transactions on behalf of businesses throughout the country. Practice areas include, among others, corporate law, contracts, employment and labor law, intellectual property, real property, mortgage lending, and bankruptcy. Peter is admitted to the bars of New York, Virginia, and Washington D.C. He received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Central Florida in Orlando and earned his law degree at Touro College Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center on Long Island.
Elizabeth Henry, Vice President of Finance for ASTA is a seasoned financial executive with experience in both corporate and small business ownership. Prior to coming to ASTA, she worked at a $1B revenue software developer where she oversaw the day-to-day financial activities for the back-office departments of Accounting, Legal, IT, Facilities, HR, and Shared Services as well as developed procedures and delivered training to drive improvements in profitability, efficiency and productivity. She also brings with her years of experience as small business and startup owner in both real estate and auto repair industries. But most importantly, Elizabeth spent 11 years as a front-line reservation agent with United Airlines and is thrilled that her career has returned to the travel industry.
Meet Our Partner SpeakersErik De La Cruz, Viking
Erik De La Cruz, Senior Director of Sales for Viking, is a seasoned industry professional with over 20 years in hospitality and cruise experience. For the past 12 years, Erik has managed and been involved in all aspects of operational sales as well as field sales at Viking. His broad experience includes launches of Viking’s ocean product as well as Expedition and Mississippi programs. Mr. De La Cruz directly oversees Viking’s support process for our trade partners as one of his primary tasks.
Diane Horan, CTC, VTA, AmaWaterways
Diane has worked in the travel industry all her life. Beginning in 1974, working as a retail travel advisor and as a travel agency manager for 10 years until moving into a management position with Avis as their Travel Industry Sales Manager. From 1988 through 2010 she was the owner and President of Creative Travel Marketing Inc., a multi-line sales representation service representing many well-known and prestigious travel suppliers. She began representing AmaWaterways in 2008 and became the full time Business Development Manager for Florida in January of 2011. She was promoted to Manager, National Accounts & Business Development, FL in 2014, and in 2016 was promoted to Regional Director, Key Accounts. In 2019 she was named Director, Strategic Partner Networks where she oversees Host Agency and Home Based along with Trade Associations such as ASTA, CLIA and PATH. Diane earned her CTC designation in 1981 and was awarded the Sales Representative of the Year by the Central Florida ASTA Chapter, as well as being named the Travel Industry Person of the Year by the Suncoast Travel Industry Association. She also received her VTA certification from ASTA in 2020.
Chad Martin, Israel Ministry of Tourism
Chad Martin has been the Director of the Northeast Region of the US for the Israel Ministry of Tourism since May 2016, when he was appointed as the first American to hold his position on the heels of 10 years’ experience in the Israeli travel industry. Since joining the Ministry, he has served as the primary point person for the travel industry. This has been especially true when it comes to engagement and support for ASTA. Martin has addressed the ASTA Global Conference twice and worked with Bob Duglin of blessed memory to bring the ASTA Destination Expo to Israel in 2019. He was also nominated as the ASTA Destination Representative of the Year in 2018. As the industry continues its unprecedented recovery, Martin is working to maximize travel to Israel by engaging and educating ASTA member advisors.
Eyal Carlin, Israel Ministry of Tourism
Eyal Carlin is the Commissioner of North America for the Israel Ministry of Tourism. Since August 2019, he has been responsible for maximizing tourism from Israel’s largest travel market, overseeing the ministry’s five government tourism offices on the continent and directing activities in the areas of marketing, public relations, and business development. Carlin joined the Ministry of Tourism in 2010 following a career in the Israeli Pharmaceutical and Hi Tech industries. Prior to his appointment as commissioner, he served as Director of the Americas Department and Senior Director of the Overseas Department at IMOT headquarters in Jerusalem and director of the Southern US in Atlanta.
Robert Ford, AIG Travel
Bob is a Travel Industry Executive with over twenty years of experience leading sales organizations to success in the global travel & tourism industry. Bob is privileged to travel this great country teaching and promoting the importance of travel insurance & travel safety. With his energetic personality he offers new ideas, creative solutions, and a fresh Generation X perspective into the ever-changing travel industry he is so passionate about.
Jeff Schafer, Allianz Partners
Jeff joined the Allianz sales team in 2016 as Regional Sales Director managing four District Directors across the US. With over 30 years in the travel industry, he has extensive experience ranging from travel technology to global distribution. Jeff began his career at American Airlines and from there has held executive level roles at a variety of travel organizations focused on the sale and distribution of travel insurance products in the US and globally. Jeff has a Masters in technology management and is located in Denver, Colorado.
Louis De Joux, American Airlines
Louis de Joux is American’s Managing Director of Global Leisure Sales, with a focus on leading the airline’s sales strategy for a variety of segments. His team is responsible for Online Travel Agencies (OTAs), Tour Operators, Consolidators, Cruise & Marine as well as the Group & Meeting segment. A lifelong travel and aviation enthusiast, Louis has held a variety of roles at British Airways and American Airlines, including Network Planning, Revenue Management, Finance and Alliances. This includes launching the Atlantic Joint Business between IAG and American Airlines in 2010 and setting up the codeshare and frequent flyer relationship between American Airlines and China Southern Airlines. Originally from France, Louis earned his Bachelor of Commerce at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, and later received a Master of Science with a focus in Air Transport Management from Cranfield University in the UK.
Paul McGannon, Marriott International
Paul is originally from Kansas City, MO and now calls Miami, FL home. He graduated from The University of Central Missouri, where he studied Hotel & Restaurant Administration and Spanish. Paul has been working in the hospitality industry for the past 18 years and started his hotel career as a Bellman. Since then, Paul has worked in a variety of capacities and has experience with selling all 30 Marriott Brands. In his latest role, Paul oversees Travel Industry Sales for Marriott Premium Brands, where he is deployed to preferred Retail Travel Agencies based in the Southeastern US & Texas. His approach to sales is all about relationships, he is proud to have an extensive network of partners & colleagues from around the world, highlighted by the incredible community at ASTA. Paul and his husband live in the heart of Miami in Brickell. In his free time, he can be found enjoying walks around Biscayne Bay with his dog, Mr. Garrison, gardening, cooking and practicing yoga.
Anthony Meloro, Royal Caribbean International
Anthony Meloro is Royal Caribbean International’s director of business development support, host travel partner and trade relations. Within the cruise industry’s largest sales organization, Meloro oversees a team of 30+ inside sales representatives who provide day-to-day strategic support to valued travel advisors and agencies across the United States and Canada. The industry veteran with 26 years at Royal Caribbean has been integral in the growth of the cruise line’s dedicated business development operation and network of relationships with host travel partner agencies and at-home travel professionals. In his trade relations role, he is responsible for building strong relationships with travel industry associations like ASTA where he is the co-chair of the Proud Partner Committee.
Kristy Giragosian, Virgin Voyages
Kristy Giragosian (Gear-ah-go-see-in) has been part of the Virgin Voyages team for over 4 years. She was hired as a Sales Manager and has since moved into a Senior Role partnering with Virgin Voyages' National Account partners.
ASTA is committed to providing you a safe experience during our in-person events.
As of October 1st, 2021, ASTA requires proof of full COVID-19 vaccination to attend our events or a negative COVID-19 PCR test 72 hours prior to the start of the event.