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Our Team in the Field

Expert tour leaders are an integral part of the Worldwide Quest experience. Meet our unique group of leaders from around the world and see where they're off to next.

Aaron
Lawton

Aaron Lawton, alumnus of the University of British Columbia, develops the Polar program for One Ocean Expeditions, bringing a strong commitment to conservation in the Polar Regions. Over the last decade, Aaron has been expedition leader or kayak guide on about a hundred trips to the Canadian Arctic, the Antarctic Peninsula and Svalbard.
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Alan
Watson

As a former faculty member in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of Guelph, Alan Watson taught nature interpretation, environmental stewardship and a conservation field course. With over 25 years of experience leading nature tours, Alan has guided groups in southern Ontario, Canada's Maritime Provinces, Trinidad and Tobago, Nevis, Dominica, Costa Rica, Brazil and Tanzania.
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Amanda
Butler

Amanda Butler has a passion for the East; she spent time living on Canada's East Coast, and later moved to the Far East to work in China. She has travelled extensively around Asia and Western Europe; 25 countries and counting! She currently lives near Hanoi, Vietnam as an entrepreneur and leader of cultural tours. 
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Andrew
Trites

Dr. Andrew Trites is the Director of the Marine Mammal Research Unit at the University of British Columbia and oversees a research program that involves captive and field studies of seals, sea lions, whales, and dolphins. His research spans the fields of ecology, nutrition, physiology, and animal behaviour—and is designed to further the conservation and understanding of marine mammals and resolve conflicts between people and marine mammals.
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Angela
Dacey

Angela Dacey has been an entrepreneur for over 20 years with her company Heaven & Earth Inc. Her mission is to “Inspire and Uplift the Spirit” in all her endeavours both personally and professionally. She has been interviewed around the world in all forms of media for her knowledge and insight.
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Ann
Haynes-Sutton

Ann Haynes-Sutton is a conservation ecologist who has spent her working life in Jamaica. She is the senior author of “A photographic guide to the birds of Jamaica” published by Princeton University in 2009, and has been leading bird and natural history tours in Jamaica and other islands for many years.
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Ann
Kirkland

Ann Kirkland is the founder of Classical Pursuits, which includes Toronto’s famed ‘salon in the sun’ and literary adventures around the world. Her latest brainchild is Most Liveable Cities, trips to people-oriented cites in both the developed and the developing world to get to know why their residents love to call them home.
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AnnaLena
Seemann

AnnaLena Seemann came to Canada from Sweden at age 19, eager to travel and explore the world. After homeschooling and raising four children she started a portrait photography business because she loves telling people’s stories, while creating a connection with them to capture their inner beauty.
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Boris
Masip

Havana-born Boris Masip has lived in Toronto, Hong Kong, and New York City while pursuing a career in consulting and banking. Boris has unparalleled ties to the arts in Cuba and all the connections needed to show you an evolving and energized city. He often quotes his grandmother, “Experience it first, so you will be the one telling the story.”
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Brian
Damude

Brian Damude is pioneer Canadian filmmaker, photographer and film professor emeritus at Ryerson University’s renowned School of Image Arts. He has pursued a career as a filmmaker, screenwriter, media educator and, more recently, a photographer with a focus on abstract landscapes. In 1995 he was appointed Chair of the School of Image Arts (Film-Photography-New Media) at Ryerson University, a position he held for 10 years. In 2017, Brian was awarded the prestigious Ryerson University Career Achievement Award.
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Brian
Ratcliff

Brian Ratcliff is a biological consultant whose recent work includes collecting background data for environmental assessments of proposed “green energy” projects near Lake Superior. He has worked extensively with species at risk such as Peregrine Falcon, American White Pelican, and Woodland Caribou.
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Caroline
Schultz

Caroline Schultz is the Executive Director at Ontario Nature. Caroline has directed Ontario Nature’s programs and operations since 2005. Caroline previously served as conservation director for the Canadian Nature Federation for 10 years, leading the organization’s national advocacy, science and stewardship programs.
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Carolyn
Whitaker

Carolyn Whitaker is a seasoned tour leader with Women’s Travel Network. She uses her corporate leadership and organizational skills to ensure that each tour experience is worry free. Her sense of humour and passion for travel will make your tour fun and eventful.
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Catherine
LaFarge

Catherine LaFarge is director and curator of the Cryptogamic Herbarium at the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Alberta. Her research in the Arctic has focused on bryophytes (ecological building blocks like mosses and other non-vascular plants), which her team has revived after 400 years in the ice leading to suggestions that they may be ideal as trial balloons for researchers exploring the prospect of survival beyond earth.
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Chris
Earley

Chris Earley is the University of Guelph Arboretum’s Interpretive Biologist and Education Coordinator and a self-proclaimed 'nature geek'. He teaches workshops at the Arboretum, and participates in research around the world. Chris has led many previous Quest trips, including several to Africa.
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Christoph
Richter

Professor Christoph Richter is an Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, in the Department of Biology at University of Toronto Mississauga. His research focused on the influence of human activities on the behaviour of cetaceans. Currently, he is leading undergraduate research on the ecological impact of invasive species around Mississauga and on the Galápagos Islands. He has taught field courses in the Bay of Fundy, Gulf of Maine, and Ecuador, and has been a study leader on cruises to the Arctic, Haida Gwaii and the Antarctic.
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Christopher
Hume

Veteran Toronto Star architecture critic and urban affairs columnist, Christopher Hume is one of Canada's best-known city commentators. His work has been recognized with a National Newspaper Award, a Royal Architectural Institute of Canada President's Award for Architecture in Media and a Toronto Heritage Award. He has taught at the U of T's Daniel's Architecture Faculty and the Royal Ontario Museum. 
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Colin
Chapman

Colin Chapman is a professor in the Department of Anthropology and McGill School of Environment, where he holds a Canada Research Chair Tier 1 position in Primate Ecology and Conservation, is a Killam Research Fellow, Velan Foundation Awardee for Humanitarian Service, and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He is internationally recognized for his 30+ years of research into primate ecology, population regulation, nutrition, and disease dynamics, and for his global contributions to conservation.
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Corey
McCusker

Corey McCusker is a Mental Performance Coach, Motivational Speaker and Author. She founded Your Mind Matters, a unique private coaching and training company that helps adults take control of their lives by harnessing the power of their minds.
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Dan
Riskin

Dan Riskin, PhD, is a television personality, scientist, and author. He is best known in Canada as the co-host of Discovery's flagship science program, Daily Planet, and elsewhere as the host of Animal Planet's hugely successful show about parasites, Monsters Inside Me. He is passionate about photographing wildlife, especially the underappreciated creatures that he thinks deserve a closer look.
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Daniele
Cybulskie

Danièle Cybulskie is the author of The Five-Minute Medievalist, a TEDx speaker, and a featured writer at Medievalists.net. She is regularly published in three international magazines, and her work spans topics from The Hundred Years’ War to Roman togas. Her mission is to make history fun, entertaining, and engaging, and to draw attention to our shared human nature across the centuries.
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Dave
LeBlanc

Since 2004, Dave has written weekly as “The Architourist” for Canada’s national newspaper, the Globe & Mail. His work has also appeared in The Toronto Star, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Concrete Toronto (Coach House, 2007) and international architecture magazines. He has served as a juror for the Ontario Association of Architects and Heritage Toronto.
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David
Evans

Dr. David Evans is Curator, Vertebrate Palaeontology at the ROM and Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at U of T. He has lead dinosaur digs in South Africa and around the world for the ROM, including the one we will visit.
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Deb
Kozlowski

Deb Kozlowski is the founder and owner of Deb K Fitness, which helps men and women over the age of 60 reach (and surpass) their health and wellness goals. Making a difference in people’s lives is very important to Deb. She does it in her practice and now will have the ability to maintain it as a trip leader for WTN.
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Debbie
Ross

Debbie Ross, founder of Womens Travel Network has been providing travel services to her customers for over 30 years. Her travel around the globe has been extensive. Be it relaxing holidays, trekking or sports related, she has first hand knowledge of many varied travel experiences.
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Diane and Doug
Clement

Diane & Doug Clement are both former Olympians in track and field, and are highly regarded in their athletic and culinary professions. Diane Clement was a sprinter on the 1956 Canadian Olympic team and a bronze medalist at the 1958 Commonwealth Games. Dr. Doug Clement is a former Olympic and Commonwealth athlete and coach, and a Member of the Order of Canada.
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Dr. Martyn
Obbard

Martyn Obbard is an emeritus research scientist and the former resident bear biologist with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, and adjunct professor at Trent University (Peterborough, Ontario). His field work focused on Polar Bears and Black Bears, and he has published many papers detailing the demographics, genetics, and movements of these species.
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Gary
Lewis

UBC alumnus Gary Lewis is the owner of Phoenix Perennials, a cutting edge retail nursery in Vancouver, and an expert on perennials and horticulture. He holds two degrees from UBC in Conservation Biology and Plant Ecology.
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Gary
Schoepfel

Gary has led and taught folks for the last 25 years how to lead book discussion groups. He has worked in the theatre for 10+ years as an actor, director, acting coach, and producer. A founding member of the Illinois Shakespeare Festival he received a Joseph Jefferson Citation for performance.
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Gavan
Watson

Gavan Watson is a third-generation naturalist and a second-generation Quest tour leader. While completing his PhD at York University, he developed and taught a popular experiential natural history course. Now at the University of Guelph, he works to enhance the quality of teaching and learning on-campus.
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Geoff
Henderson

Retired from teaching outdoor education and natural science, Geoff Henderson continues to work on botanical surveys, Kiwi monitoring, and an on-going native plants re-vegetation project.

"Geoff is an incredibly knowledgeable leader for both flora and fauna as well as Maori culture." - 2016 New Zealand traveller
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Geoffrey
Hiller

Geoffrey Hiller’s photographic work has been published in magazines in the USA, Europe, and Japan including Geo, Newsweek, Mother Jones and the New York Times Magazine. His award-winning multimedia projects about Vietnam, Eastern Europe, Ghana, Burma, and Brazil have earned recognition from Apple, The Christian Science Monitor and USA Today.
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Glenn
Barrett

Past-President of the Hamilton Naturalists’ Club, Glenn Barrett has a degree in Wildlife Biology and has worked extensively in outdoor education programming for educational institutions and as a Wildlife Technician for Environment Canada since 1994.
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Greg
Sharam

Greg Sharam is a wildlife biologist, spending his summers in the Canadian Arctic, working on large mammals: grizzly bears, muskox and caribou. He completed graduate work at UBC with a PhD (Zoology) in Serengeti National Park, Tanzania, and an MSc (Botany) in the Yukon Territory. His interests include wildlife biology and conservation.
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Hans
Ibelings

Hans Ibelings is a Dutch architectural critic and historian. Born and raised in Rotterdam and a longtime Amsterdammer prior to moving to Canada, he is currently a lecturer at the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design of the University of Toronto and the publisher of The Architecture Observer. 
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Howard
Soon

UBC alumnus Howard Soon is the longest serving winemaker in Canada, creating 37 consecutive vintages and winning countless awards for his winemaking. As the head winemaker at Sandhill from 1997 to 2017, his collaborative relationships with growers and non-interventionist approach have consistently led to award-winning, single vineyard wines. Howard is now the master winemaker at the Similkameen Valley-based Vanessa Vineyards.
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Jaymie
Matthews

UBC Professor Jaymie Matthews (Department of Physics & Astronomy) calls himself an “astro-paparazzo who unveils the hidden lifestyles of stars by eavesdropping on the music of the spheres."
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Jean
Iron

A past president of the Ontario Field Ornithologists and retired school principal, Jean Iron is active writing for nature publications and participating in Wildlife Surveys for the Ministry of Natural Resources.
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Jeff
de Jong

Jeff de Jong is a horticulturalist, garden writer, and photographer based in Victoria, BC. He is the host of Gardening 101, a weekly radio show on CFAX 1070.
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Jessica
Linton

Jessica Linton is a consulting biologist who specializes in butterflies. Based in Ontario, her work has a heavy focus on species-at-risk including butterflies, the wildlife group about which Jessica is most passionate. She has over 10 years of experience conducting butterfly surveys, behavioral monitoring, and migration studies.
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John
England

John England is Professor Emeritus of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Alberta. His research spans 53 field seasons and has focused on glacial geology, sea level change, permafrost landscapes and processes, sea ice, and glaciology. A passionate advocate for the protection of the northern environment and for northern science, Dr. England was instrumental in the creation of Canada’s northernmost national park, Quttinirpaaq, on Ellesmere Island.
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John
Smol

John Smol is the Canada Research Chair in Environmental Change and a professor in the Department of Biology at Queen’s University. He studies how ecosystems change over long periods in response to natural and human-induced environmental change with a particular focus on Arctic and alpine ecosystems. For about three decades, he has been leading research in the high Arctic, studying the ecology of polar lakes and ponds and how they have changed.
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Josh
Vandermeulen

Josh Vandermeulen is a professional Field Biologist and is an active and well-known member of Ontario’s naturalist community. He regularly travels the province in pursuit of his two core interests, field herpetology and ornithology.
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Julia
Zarankin

Julia Zarankin is an award-winning writer and lecturer who regularly teaches courses to lifelong learners about Russian and European culture and literature. She regularly shares her passion for cultural history with Toronto audiences at Hot Docs Curious Minds, the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies, and the Royal Conservatory of Music.
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Julian
Dierkes

Julian Dierkes is a prolific commentator on contemporary Mongolia through the media but also on the Mongolia Focus blog that he publishes. A Canadian ambassador once reported that Julian’s blog posts are read at the Mongolian cabinet table. He came to UBC in 2002, first as an assistant professor and now as an associate professor and the Keidanren Chair in Japanese Research at UBC’s School of Public Policy and Global Affairs.
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Justin
Peter

Justin Peter is Quest Nature Tours' Director of Programs and senior naturalist. Justin was most recently the senior naturalist at Ontario’s world-renowned Algonquin Park, where he coordinated the park’s interpretive program and acted as lead howler for the celebrated Public Wolf Howl events.
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Laureen
Morris

Laureen Morris has been travelling steadily since 2006. After a long corporate career, she’s active in politics and on the move as an avid photographer. Her enthusiasm for life and great people skills ensure you’ll make the most of your travel experience.
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Laurie
Flasko

Laurie Flasko is a customer service expert, motivational speaker, life coach, and author. She has recently launched the “Kindness Advantage”: an initiative to educate clients and her community about the choice a person has to extend kindness. Laurie loves adventure; she enjoys creating travel experiences that allows one to experience the awe and beauty of the place and moment.
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Lee
Groat

Professor Lee Groat has been a faculty member at the University of British Columbia since 1989. His main research interests are the geology of gem deposits, pegmatites, the crystal chemistry of minerals, and economic geology. Many of his projects have entailed fieldwork in remote parts of northern Canada. In 2003 Dr. Groat was elected a Fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America, and in 2009 the new mineral, groatite was named in his honour.
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Lewie
Gonsalves

Lewie, our peripatetic president, has over 35 years’ experience researching and organizing trips throughout the world. As well as designing and leading our President’s Tours, Lewie is also chief designer of our Private Journey collection of tailored tours.
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Liz
Gifford

Liz Gifford is a passionate and creative environmental educator with extensive experience in remote wilderness terrain and travel. Past travellers have praised Liz’s excellent as a tour manager, citing her cultural knowledge, empathetic approach, and outdoor skills.
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Liz
Scott

Liz Scott is a Marketing and Sales guru with over 25 years’ experience as a senior executive leading entrepreneurs and small business owners well into 6 gures and beyond. Recognized as an award- winning growth strategist in the Business world she is an international speaker, author, panelist, and strategist. She has a deep sense of curiosity which fuels her love of exploration and travel.
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Lori
Dalton

Lori Dalton is an enthusiastic tour leader, personal life coach and gifted speaker. She uses her excellent people skills to ensure that everyone is enjoying, learning and growing while on tour with her. Her joie de vivre makes every journey with her fun-filled and stress free.
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Lori
Daniels

Lori Daniels is a professor in UBC’s forestry department with an expertise in forest ecology. In addition to a long-term research program investigating climate change in the forests of coastal British Columbia, she collaborates with colleagues in Argentina, conducting research on forest decline in the southern Andes. An outdoor ecologist with an interest in conservation and natural resource management, Lori travels regularly to Argentina.
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Lynette
Hartley

Lynette Hartley has worked in the conservation field in New Zealand for over 20 years. She is passionately invested in protecting New Zealand’s threatened native ecosystems, and is active in habitat restoration activities. Lynette is also an accomplished nature artist. She will look forward to hosting you on our tour!
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Lynn
Kanuka

Lynn Kanuka is an Olympic medalist and WalkRun coach. She is best known for her Bronze  medal performance at the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 1984. For over 25 years Lynn has inspired people of all ages and ability levels through physical fitness to take steps toward better health, achieve personal goals, and be active and happy.
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Maggie
Broda

Maggie is a former member of the Ontario College of Art and Design University’s Board of Governors, and she also served as President of its Alumni Association. A contemporary artist and instructor, Maggie is represented in Toronto by the Elaine Fleck Gallery.
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Manoj
Abraham

Manoj Abraham heads up the logistics team in our Delhi office. Whether designing tours with a painstaking attention to detail or leading our travellers across Asia, Manny draws on his exceptional network of contacts to create intimate and enriching experiences.
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Marion
Tripp

Marion Tripp is a performance-driven event program and client support professional with a solid reputation and passion for consistently executing and delivering fun and compelling ‘customer experiences’. With outcomes and solutions at the forefront, she is known for her integrity and her exceptional interpersonal and leadership abilities with a single focus on delivering “gold standard” outcomes that meet or exceed client expectations!
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Mark
Cwik

Mark Cwik is education manager and a longtime seminar leader for Classical Pursuits. Mark currently lives in London, England, where he leads seminars with the London Literary Salon.
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Melanie
Blake

Melanie Blake is a writer and editor who developed a deep interest in fiction from Asia during a three-year stint in India. She has canoed, kayaked, sailed, trekked and cycled down or along rivers ranging from the Hudson to the Dordogne to the Indus.
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Mike
Kent

Mike Kent is an excellent  all-round naturalist and educator based in southwestern Ontario. He has worked as a Park Naturalist at Ontario’s Killbear Provincial Park and the famous Algonquin Provincial Park, and as a Tour Manager at the Monteverde Butterfly Gardens in Costa Rica’s highland cloud forests. He has a keen and abiding interest in all life forms with a particular fondness for insects, fungi and other under-appreciated groups.
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Nancy
Hermiston

UBC Opera Ensemble Director Nancy Hermiston’s operatic career has taken her throughout Canada, the United States and Europe. The consummate opera expert, Nancy is as knowledgeable as she is congenial.
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Nanette
Snel

Nanette Snel is a seasoned and passionate traveller. Born in Venezuela, raised in Holland with ties to Portugal, Brazil and South Africa, travel is in her blood. Nanette will make sure your tour is memorable and that every need is taken care of – with a smile.
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Nella
Cotrupi

Nella Cotrupi is an Italian born lawyer and educator whose work has focused on the social and ethical engagements of literature.
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Page
Burt

Page Burt is the staff naturalist at Bathurst Inlet Lodge. She has worked with the Inuit of Bathurst Inlet since 1972. She has also lived in Rankin Inlet and Yellowknife where she worked as an environmental scientist. She has also been a popular resource staff aboard our Canada's Northwest Passage expedition.
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Patrick
Moldowan

Patrick Moldowan is a devoted lifelong interpretive naturalist with a special interest in herpetology and biogeography. Currently pursuing his doctoral studies at the University of Toronto, he also devotes considerable time to long-term studies of amphibians and turtles at Algonquin Park’s Wildlife Research Station. 
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Paula
Swart

Paula Swart is a museum curator and expert on Asian culture and history. Paula has degrees in Sinology, Asian art history, Chinese history, and archaeology and has published several books and numerous articles on the art and architecture of Asian cultures. Paula is a lecturer at the University of British Columbia and has recently been teaching courses on UNESCO World Heritage sites at the UBC Summer Institute and the University of Victoria.
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Pete
Read

Pete travels the world on the lookout for amazing landscapes of the most remote kind. A well-known naturalist, Pete brings a special focus on wildlife and wild places to our tours.
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Reid
Flock

Before his first introduction to clay at the Burlington Arts Centre, Reid Flock majored in English literature and violin at the University of Western Ontario. After mentoring with Canadian ceramist Kayo O’Young in 1998 and studying at Sheridan College School of Ceramic Design, Reid moved to Ibaraki, Japan where he lived and studied ceramics for nine years. He returned to Canada in 2009 and has established his studio practice in Hamilton, Ontario.
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Rick
Phillips

Rick was the Host and Producer of SOUND ADVICE, the weekly guide to classical music and recordings, heard across Canada on CBC. He’s often a juror in the classical music categories for the Juno Awards. Rick holds a B. Mus. from McGill University and a M. Mus. from the University of Toronto.
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Rowena
Lamy

Rowena Lamy was born in Guyana, South America. At age 20, she migrated to pursue Undergraduate studies and has since made Canada her home. She is an experienced, enthusiastic International traveller for both business and pleasure.
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Ruthi
Segal

Ruthi Segal was born in South Africa, has lived in Toronto for over 40 years and has travelled extensively all her life. A consummate people person, her positive attitude, sense of humour and infectious spirit of adventure ensures your trip experience will be exceptional.
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Sandy
Girvan

Sandy Girvan is an avid traveller and has always infused her sense of humour with a responsible side wherever she goes. She has travelled widely and lived abroad for short periods. Sandy has often gone on solo travels and has had to be aware of every detail to make sure the adventure was calculated.
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Sean
Forester

Sean Forester is a San Francisco–based artist and lecturer. He lived in Italy for ten years and trained as a classical painter at the Florence Academy of Art. Sean is Director of Art History, Humanities, and Composition at the Golden Gate Atelier.
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Sherry
Kirkvold

Sherry brings a deep love of nature along with her more than 30 years of experience as a naturalist, geographer and expedition leader. She has worked in the national, provincial and regional park systems as well as museums in British Columbia.
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Sherry and Bill
Glanville

Sherry Glanville is a member of the Winnipeg Art Gallery Volunteer Associates. As a painter, Sherry’s travel interests focus on art and its place in the lives of people from other cultures. Bill Glanville has travelled extensively professionally and personally for over 40 years. As a team, Bill and Sherry have coordinated and hosted 14 travel tours for WAG.
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Shiv
Pratap Singh

A keen Rajasthani horse polo player, Shiv Pratap Singh is involved in the preservation and curation of the region’s art and architecture including his family’s holdings. His extensive personal connections to people and places ensure very special insider moments for our travellers.
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Stephen
Inglis

Stephen Inglis has been a researcher, curator, and then Director-General of Research and Collections at the Canadian Museum of Civilization. His contributions to museums and Indian studies have been honoured by the Canadian Museums Association, the Shastri Indio-Canadian Institute and the Government of India. He earned a PhD in anthropology at UBC based on fieldwork with artisans in India and is currently an Adjunct Research Professor and Instructor of Art History at Carleton University.
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Timothy
Jackson

Timothy Jackson, (B.Ed. 99) divides his time between home in Nelson B.C. and time as a safari guide in South Africa. He undertook formal field and trails guide training in South Africa and completed his full trails guide training in northern Kruger where we’ll be spending time on this tour. Timothy’s long-standing connections to the people and places we will be visiting make this a very special experience.
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Tony
Beck

Tony Beck is a freelance naturalist and professional photographer based in Ottawa. His award winning work appears in many books, websites, magazines & calendars. He teaches birdwatching and nature photography courses both independently and through a variety of institutions. Tony has earned the rank of Ambassador for Nikon Canada.
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Wayne
Walder

For more than 30 years Wayne has practiced meditation from a number of spiritual traditions. He has chanted Dzikr with Sufi Pir's (saints), sung spiritual songs with Hindu priests, and sat in meditation with Buddhist monks. Wayne is a practicing Unitarian Universalist minister in Toronto.
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Wendy
O’Brien

Wendy O’Brien, Ph.D, is a philosopher, teacher and interviewer. With over thirty years of experience teaching, she’s lectured and conducted workshops at Humber Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning, The University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University, Harvard, Oxford and The Art Gallery of Ontario on topics including creativity, beauty, desire, silence, hope and power. Her interests in literature and the visual arts led her to begin a long term study on the concept of wonder.
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