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In the years that Kenneth (aka Ken) Shapiro has penned TravelAge West’s (TAW) opening address, he has never tooted his own horn.
So, please excuse Ken’s absence from his regular post. We’re excited to announce that Ken was recently promoted to Vice President, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of TAW — giving me carte blanche to share a bit about our brand’s humble leader.
Ken began at TAW 16 years ago as Destination Editor. He was promoted to Executive Editor and, quicker yet, to Editor-in-Chief, a role he has held since 2006. He steered the brand through difficult times and repositioned the magazine to what it is today: an exciting, features-driven publication focused on immersive destination stories. Under Ken, the magazine began — and continues — to earn numerous awards for its standout content.
His contribution to the travel trade has been immense, earning him a SoCal ASTA Diamond Award in 2013. He is even cited in the Wikipedia page on “Tourism” — as well as in The New York Times — for coining “Doom Tourism” (aka “Last Chance Tourism”) way back in 2007.
A constant innovator and challenger of the status quo, Ken launched the first-of-its-kind Family Getaways and Explorer publications, as well as numerous new projects and events. But even dedicated readers might not know about his reputation within our parent company, Northstar Travel Group. Among executives, Ken is considered to be a top manager with a unique ability to identify and develop next-generation talent.
“Because of his passion, vision and calmness, he partners extremely well with the TAW team to bring out their best work,” said Robert Sullivan, President of the Travel Group. “He’s the perfect leader.”
According to Bruce Shulman, Senior Vice President/Group Publisher, Retail Group, Ken’s promotion will increase TAW’s visibility in the industry and continue to strengthen the brand on behalf of its staff, readers and partners.