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TravelAge West recently named 10 Western U.S.-based travel advisors to serve on its Agent Advisory Board for 2018.
The advisors, who were hand-selected by the magazine’s editorial team, include Donna Alkarmi of Lone Star Travel; Brianna Glenn of Milk + Honey Travels; Daniela Harrison of Avenues of the World; Beci Mahnken of MEI Travel; Steve Orens of Plaza Travel; Hope Smith of Born to Travel; Lynda Turley of Alpine Travel; David Van Ness of All-Travel; Melissa Varela of Modern Romance Travel; and Leslie Wahlgren of Kahala Travel.
“We are honored to have some of the industry’s top travel advisors serving on our advisory board,” said Kenneth Shapiro, Editor-in-Chief of TravelAge West. “Together with these agents — handpicked for their top-notch expertise, stellar industry reputation and unique perspectives — we will continue to enhance our products; keep on the frontline of travel advisor issues; and continue to be a high-quality resource for the travel industry.”
Travel agents who serve on the Agent Advisory Board will have a variety of roles. In addition to providing consistent feedback on the magazine’s overall editorial strategy, members will help editors develop new projects and initiatives; serve as ambassadors for the brand; and help promote TravelAge West and its supplemental publications — Explorer and Family Getaways — to the industry. Their names will also be listed on the TravelAge West masthead in print.
“TravelAge West is a publication I have read since I started in the industry five years ago,” said Melissa Varela, owner of San Ramon, Calif.-based Modern Romance Travel. “It is an incredible resource for anyone selling travel. When I found out I was selected to serve on its Agent Advisory Board, I felt grateful and humbled. To be included with some of the top travel advisors in the Western U.S. is truly an honor and a privilege. I’m excited about this opportunity, and I look forward to sharing my perspective on the industry and travel advisor needs.”
Additionally, these travel professionals will collaborate with the TravelAge West staff in reviewing a list of hundreds of supplier nominees as we compile the “Editor’s Picks” for the annual Western Agents’ Votes of Excellence (WAVE) awards. The WAVE Awards will culminate with an annual black-tie gala, to be held at The Ritz-Carlton, Marina del Rey on June 14.
The 2018 advisory board will meet for the first time on Feb. 13 in Los Angeles.