tourism academy business class podcast

Tourism Academy Business Class Podcast

Business Class

The Business Class podcast is where you go to meet those who have built fulfilling careers, successful businesses, and sustainable local economies in tourism! 

Do you want to travel more and travel better? Me too! If you’ve ever had that sense of wanderlust, those daydreams of faraway places, and that nagging feeling that you should be doing more of what you love, you understand me. Behind every magical place are fascinating people who create, deliver and promote unforgettable experiences – these people are the Business Class podcast guests. 

If you are working in the travel industry or, simply inspired by travel and longing for a job that allows you to see more of the world, you’ve found your tribe.

The Tourism Academy’s Business Class Podcast exists to introduce you to the people who are making a living, making a difference, and finding fulfillment through their work in the travel, hospitality and tourism industries. 

Listen to Business Class on your favorite podcast network...

Watch episodes online...

Your Business Class Podcast Host - Stephen Ekstrom

Bring together an insightful interviewer with a roster of guests that have made a significant impact in the places people visit, the things tourists do and the means they use to get there, and you’re bound to have an interesting conversation. 

Business Class interviews, though, are in a category by themselves, distinguished by the unique approach of host and executive producer Stephen Ekstrom. “One of the most intriguing frequent fliers profiled by the NY Times,” says NY1’s Pat Kiernan. 

Ekstrom, who serves as The Tourism Academy‘s Chief Strategic Officer, isn’t afraid to ask a tough question. But Ekstrom sets an atmosphere in which guests volunteer to share their answers, insight and knowledge. What often puts those guests at ease is Ekstrom’s understanding of their work. “There’s a shared curiosity and interest in learning with every guest,” Ekstrom says. “The tourism industry is built on the relationships people have with each other. We make memories from travel experiences and the people who make travel possible. It’s always about providing others with an opportunity to open their eyes and expand their understanding of the world.”

A Career In Tourism

Ekstrom began his career in the 1990’s on college radio at Quinnipiac University. He went on to create and deliver successful tourism development strategies for now thriving destinations, theme restaurants, cultural institutions, theatrical management companies, and some of the world’s most recognized attractions. He’s been called upon to speak at colleges and universities, conferences and countless panel discussions each year. He’s also been profiled by media giants like the New York Times, NBC, ABC, CBS Morning, and NY1.

tourism academy podcast business class

Upcoming Episodes

Don’t miss great conversations with amazing innovators. Subscribe to the podcast today.

  • Greg Takehara, CEO of TourismCares
  • John Percy, President & CEO Niagara Falls USA
  • Peter Pantuso, CEO of the American Bus Association
  • Elliott Ferguson, President & CEO Destination DC and Chair of TourismDiversityMatters
  • Ben Berthelot, President & CEO Lafayette Convention and Visitors Commission
  • Carylann Assante, Executive Director of the Student Youth Travel Association
  • Estela Martinez-Stuart, Fort Worth Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Richard Peterson, CEO US Cultural & Heritage Marketing Council
  • Olly Nicholls, CEO AttractionWorld
  • Adam Burke, President & CEO Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board 
  • Gavin Landry, Visit Britain
  • John Bridge, TravelBeat
  • Katinka Friis, Visit Denmark
  • Heidi Walters, Visit North Carolina
  • Heather Boehm Egan, Grapevine, Texas
  • Dana Romanello, Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
  • Deborah Ward, CEO Omaha Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Thu Tran, New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Anna Karnowski, The Importance of Leadership
  • Jeff Kollath, STAX Museum of American Soul Music
  • Tony Hoover, Red Line Tours


Business Class Video Archive

Seasoned professionals share what it takes to make travel a career and not just a hobby. Each episode of the Business Class podcast introduces you to the people behind your favorite destinations and travel experiences, leaders who make tourism memorable for millions of people. These leaders share the secrets to building satisfying careers, successful businesses, and supportive community in the travel industry.

Our Sponsor

Business Class is made possible by the generous support of our sponsor, Group Travel Odyssey

get involved

If you’re interested in becoming a sponsor or promoting your brand with The Tourism Academy, pick up the phone and dial 

+1 954.289.4585 or

Schedule A Call
Login Categories