The Tourism Academy’s mission is to educate, empower and inspire the tourism industry. Subsequently, making it easier for travel professionals to advance their careers, grow their businesses and provide life-changing travel experiences to more people, sustainably.
The Tourism Academy is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization.
Donations to The Tourism Academy are tax deductible.
We are creating a world where knowledge, skill, economic development, exploration, travel, and personal growth thrive together. Learn about us.
Lifelong learner, digital nomad and tourism expert with more than 25 years experience building strong brands, experiences and relationships.
Business psychologist and instructional designer by trade, Sheena led employee development for one of Forbes Fastest Growing companies 7 years in a row.
Highly-skilled professionals who are responsible for creating learning materials and experiences that are engaging, effective, and accessible.
Smart folks who apply psychological theories and principles to improve a company's productivity, employee well-being, and overall organizational performance.
Leaders with a deep understanding of tourism principles, practices, policies and trends, who are able to apply this knowledge to help promote and manage successful tourism ventures.
Passionate about technology, these geeks possess a deep understanding of how technology works, including the intricate details of computer hardware, software, and coding.
Our core values define who we are, how we work, and the commitment we make to you.
Our mission is to educate, empower and inspire the tourism industry, making it easier for travel professionals to advance their careers, grow their businesses and provide life-changing travel experiences to more people, responsibly.
We find and build solutions where others have only seen challenges.
We believe in sustainability. Online tourism ambassador training consumes 90% less energy and produces 85% fewer CO2 emissions than traditional training.
We find and build solutions where others have only seen challenges.
As an online learning platform brimming with ambition, no value is greater at The Tourism Academy than We Use Our Training. Our courses are the common language, with true instructional design and amazing educators, they do downright amazing things for our community.
What does it mean to be a team at The Tourism Academy? It means we’re heavily invested in each other and we share success. When we achieve an organizational goal, it’s a win for us all; when we miss the goal, we all strive to be better. People at The Tourism Academy value teamwork and view it as an essential quality of our culture.
Travel teaches us that different isn’t bad; it’s just different. We have a culture of respect and humility. We are an organization populated by genuinely smart and respectful (or “humble smart” as we like to say) people. It’s an element of our focus not only internally, but also with our customers-we know they’re the topical experts, and we listen to them.
Honesty starts with our internal interactions and decisions; everyone here is a part of it. In our culture, we value behavior that is straightforward and sincere. We seek the truth in things and we value an open marketplace of ideas, where the best ideas float to the top regardless of origin. Obfuscation, deceit and conflict-of-interest are unacceptable.
We have always wanted to build a platform that is fast, easy and beautiful. Why? Because the alternatives for professional training and education are universally slow, painful, inconvenient, and complicated. Simplicity is in our nature. Making it easier for our users has created an enormous and lasting advantage for our organization, beyond the web platform.
The Tourism Academy designs solutions to meet our students’ needs. “How can they learn it?” is a far more valuable question than, “How do I teach this?” We are putting people in the center of a business function not known for it. By championing the learner, we are promulgating a worldview: that people, their businesses, communities, associations, and industry can grow together..
Our volunteer Advisory Panel shares their time and expertise. They provide insight that is critical to implementing relevant curriculum, enterprise services, and key strategies needed by students, employers, and the tourism industry as a whole.
Advisory Panel Chair, CEO and resident Nerd Whisperer at The Tourism Academy | TourismAcademy.org is Stephen Ekstrom. Ekstrom began his career in tourism development in the 1990s.
President & CEO of Visit Baltimore. He also serves on the boards of the United States Travel Association (USTA); Religious Conference Management Association (RCMA), the American Bus Association (ABA) and Tourism Diversity Matters (TDM).
Oversees efforts to promote and sell Philadelphia as a premier destination for meetings, conventions, sporting events, overseas travelers, and group tour visitors.
Overseeing global brand marketing and sales strategies for one of the world’s most diverse and innovative destinations. He first joined the organization as Chief Operating Officer in 2016.
Elliott Ferguson serves as President and CEO of Destination DC (DDC), the official destination marketing organization for Washington, DC.
A thirty-four year veteran of the Travel & Tourism industry, Amir leads the entire team responsible for the development and execution of all facets of this premier travel and tourism market research consultancy, from program development to customer acquisition and retention.
Qualified Tourism/Hospitality and Academic Professional Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE) proficient in developing and implementing plans, strategies, and initiatives specifically designed to raise destinations image for diverse, multicultural travel.
A traveler extraordinaire, French expatriate, and rockstar on the rise in the tourism industry. She serves as a creative design specialist for VisitNorfolk and was recently selected from applicants around the world as one of the future tourism industry leaders/rising stars in this year’s Destinations International 30 Under 30 class
Founder and CEO of KD&CO Advisors, is a marketing, branding, and operations executive with 25+ years of experience in the travel, tourism, hospitality, and commercial real estate with globally recognized iconic brands and assets.
Kristina focuses her practice on General Counsel Services, Corporate Law, and Real Estate. Specifically, Kristina assists clients with corporate formation, drafts and negotiates an array of contracts, handles commercial acquisitions and leasing, and offers a problem solving approach to provide white glove service to business owners and investors.
Lisa spent 20 years in the tourism industry as VP of Operations with Brightspark Travel/Tui Travel before moving onto a new career as Chief Operations Officer with Caldwell CPAs.
Vincent Agaba is the Managing Director of Avarts Housing Ltd. He is a Director of the Rwenzori Tourism Academy.
Accomplished COO with a 10+ year track record of driving continuous improvement and enabling organization-wide mission and objectives.
More than 25 years as a senior level executive serving both the for profit and non-profit business sectors. He is currently Chairman of Sterling Advisory Group which was formed in 2020.
Co-Founder and Chief Learning Officer at the nonprofit Tourism Academy | tourismacademy.org
An Ambassador For: Sustainable Tourism – Travel – Community Engagement – Art – Culture – History – Heritage – Brand Connections – Storytelling.
Named Norwich Free Academy’s Athletic Director in April 2019, Wentworth credits the support of his family, the guidance of his mentor, and his unique perspective as contributing to his successful career as a student, coach, teacher, and administrator at NFA.
A coach and certified educator and school administrator with over 15 years of experience in diverse educational settings. Her expertise is primarily in supporting schools with curriculum development and ensuring literacy achievement.
Consistently recognized by her peers as one of the top movers and shakers of the travel industry. Anna Karnowski was part of the opening teams at Top of the Rock and SPYSCAPE and has also been a senior leader at One World Observatory and New York Water Taxi.
An avid traveler and lifelong learner, Isaac has been working in the education and training industry since 2008. He currently serves as CEO of EduGuide KSA.
He is a faculty member at the University of Southern California, Rossier School of Education in the Doctoral Programs for Organizational Change Leadership and Education Leadership. Dr. Canny has also taught at Stetson University and Grand Canyon University.
Alberto has been in the Learning and Development arena for over 18 years in different capacities, from Director of Operations of a Private School in Mexico to Consulting on Learning Development Programs for Retirement Communities, Hospitals, Colleges, and District Courts.
With his extensive knowledge of tax codes combined with strong accounting skills, CEO William J. Caldwell is able to help his clients realize their dreams. His own firm exemplifies the business management strategies and growth principles he shares with his clients.
Trusted by tourism and destination marketing leaders.