Kojo Bentum-Williamsis the Managing Editor and Publisher of Africa’s leading travel and tourism magazine, VoyagesAfriq Travel Magazine and Media. He is a communications professional with more than 12 years working in travel and tourism. His cross-cutting knowledge in the industry includes working as PR official at the Ghana Tourism Authority and as Press Secretary to Ghana’s Former Minister of Tourism, Arts, and Culture.
Kojo is currently the Senior Expert for Communications in Africa for the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and aide to the Secretary General. His company VoyagesAfriq Media Limited has transcended the borders of Africa to be one of the leading voices for tourism news and information in the world.
Colleen Dilenschneider, widely regarded as a leader of the next generation of non-profit executive management, oversees multiple audience engagement initiatives on behalf of clients in the non-profit and cultural sectors. Colleen uses data to both identify and predict market opportunities, and helps non-profit organisations maintain their relevance and secure their long-term financial futures by building affinity with their on-site and virtual audiences. Colleen has worked with many of the most admired and successful clients in the non-profit realm, including the Monterey Bay Aquarium, California Academy of Sciences, Carnegie Museums, Stanford University, Exploratorium, John G. Shedd Aquarium, Tennessee Aquarium, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), San Diego Zoo, and Wildlife Conservation Society, and currently serves on the Board of Directors at the National Aquarium.
Colleen is the author and publisher of the website Know Your Own Bone, a data-informed strategic resource for cultural organisations, and has been a featured expert in sources ranging from NPR’s Marketplace to The Wall Street Journal. She has been prominently featured in many national museum publications, and as required reading for museum studies and professional development programs nationwide.
Bernard Donoghue has been the Director of ALVA, the UK’s Association for Leading Visitor Attractions, since September 2011 following a career in advocacy, communications, and lobbying, latterly at a senior level in the tourism and heritage sector. In May of 2017, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, appointed Bernard to be the Mayor's Ambassador for Cultural Tourism and a member of the Mayor's Cultural Leadership Board.
He has been a member of the UK Government's Tourism Industry Council since 2016. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts (FRSA), a Fellow of the Tourism Society (FTS), Fellow of WWF-UK, and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (MCIPR).
Louise Gordon has been involved in the City of Johannesburg for more than 25 years – first at JHB Zoo, and from 2013 to date with JHB City Parks and Zoo. In her current position as Executive Manager of Business Development, Louise is responsible for new business development, corporate sponsorship, donations and partnerships, alternative revenue streams, stakeholder engagement, public relations, marketing and communications, and customer care.
One of her main responsibilities is to grow visitor numbers to various facilities including the JHB Zoo. JHB Zoo constantly seeks new business partners and processes to become more viable and sustainable and increasing its financial sustainability is a priority.
Jim Hekkers specialises in leveraging his extensive executive experience in the world of visitor-serving organisations to help leadership at non-profit organisations improve strategic planning, management, and market research. Jim served as the MD of the Monterey Bay Aquarium from 2001 to 2015, simultaneously serving on the boards of the National Steinbeck Center, the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Pacific Grove Museum Association. He has also served as the President and CEO of Colorado’s Ocean Journey in Denver and the marketing director for the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga. His expertise with and fascination for robust market research help him facilitate strategic plans for IMPACTS’ clients by leveraging incredible data-driven insights into charting more data-informed futures.
With a BA in journalism from Colorado State University and an MA in non-profit management from Regis University, Jim taught collaboration, leadership, and planning classes at California State University Monterey Bay for many years. A popular speaker, he has presented at dozens of zoo, aquarium, and museum conferences around the world, and has published more than 20 major articles, book chapters, and professional papers.
Sabine Lehmann has held leadership roles in some of South Africa’s most iconic tourist attractions – notably as the MD of Table Mountain Aerial Cableway and COO of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. She understands from the inside out how difficult it is to run a profitable and sustainable attraction in a world that is constantly changing.Sabine is committed to building African attractions and is the founder and Chair of the African Association of Visitor Experiences and Attractions (AAVEA) and a government relations committee member of IAAPA (the Global Association for the Attractions Industry).
She holds an MBA from the University of Cape Town, an MPhil (Futures) from Stellenbosch University, is a fully accredited member of the Association of Professional Futurists, a research associate at the Institute of Futures Research, Stellenbosch Business School, and editorial board member for the Journal of Tourism Futures. She is also a past member of the Copenhagen Institute for Futures Studies Global Scanning Network
Ian Mann is the founder of Gateways Business Consultant, a 23-year-old consultancy that is home to former main board directors of listed companies and people with exceptional business experience at executive levels. Ian is a seasoned strategist who has worked with medium-sized organisations and SBUs in large ones, across 14 countries. He holds an MA (cum laude) and was one of 10 recipients internationally of a three-year “Jerusalem Fellowship”.
Ian is the author of three books: Managing with Intent (implementation of strategy), Strategy that Works (formulation of strategy in medium-sized organisations), and The Executive Update (a summary of the most significant business ideas over the preceding four years). He has reviewed morethan 650 business books in his weekly columns in the Sunday Timesand Fin24.Ian is a director of four companies: Gateways Tracing Services, Choice Decisions, OVO Incubators, and Khulisa Social Solutions
Lara Mostertis Marketing Manager for the four South African Animal Sanctuary Alliance (SAASA) sanctuaries and a Trustee of SAASA. She studied advertising but after a short tourism course decided to switch professions. Lara has been involved in wildlife tourism since 1995 and hasworked with CEO Tony Blignautsince the beginning, first at Inyati Game Lodge in Mpumalanga, and then in Plettenberg Bay to “birth”Monkeyland in 1998.
The team went on to found Birds of Eden, Jukani Wildlife Sanctuary, and Monkeyland-KZN, and they are now collectively known as the South African Animal Sanctuary Alliance (SAASA) sanctuaries. Lara actively fights for #animalrightsintourism andshe strongly supports the #HandsOffOurWildlife campaign. Responsible wildlife tourism is not optional for her – it is the ONLY option.
SisaNtshonais the CEO of South African Tourism, a position he has held since 2016. He is at the helm of steering the mandate and all operations of the National Destination Marketing Organisation’s head office and country offices.With more than 20 years’ experience, Sisa has held several strategic leadership positions across Africa and the Middle East. Having initially joined Barclays Africa as an investment banker, he later became Head of its SME Banking Division, a role he held until joining SA Tourism. He also has experience in the aviation industry with South African Airways, in financial services with Western Union, and in manufacturing with Parmalat Food Industries.
An accountant by training, Sisa holds an MBA from the University of Pretoria and an International Executive Programme (IEP) from INSEAD Business School in France. He has served on a number of boards, including as non-Exec Board Member for the Enterprise Development Council of South Africa.
Joe Pine is an internationally acclaimed author, speaker, and management advisor to Fortune 500 companies and entrepreneurial start-ups alike. Joe co-founded Strategic Horizons LLP, a thinking studio dedicated to helping businesses conceive and design new ways of adding value to their economic offerings.
In 2019 Joe and his partner James Gilmore re-released in hardcover The Experience Economy: Competing for Customer Time, Attention, and Money featuring an all-new preview to their best-selling 1999 book The Experience Economy: Work Is Theatre and Every Business a Stage. The book demonstrates how goods and services are no longer enough – what companies must offer today are experiences: memorable events that engage each customer in an inherently personal way. It further shows that in today’s Experience Economy companies now compete against the world for the time, attention, and money of individual customers. The Experience Economy has been published in fifteen languages and was named one of the 100 best business books of all time by 800ceoread (now Porchlight).
Joe’s first book in 1993 was the award-winning Mass Customization. He also wrote Authenticity: What Consumers Really Want in 2007 with his partner James Gilmore, and Infinite Possibility: Creating Customer Value on the Digital Frontier in 2011 with Kim Korn.
Tony Sefton has more than 25 years’ experience in the leisure industry starting as a mechanical engineer designing fairground rides and then becoming an internationally renowned leisure analyst and business recovery specialist for theme parks, attractions, museums, and resorts. Tony has worked across a diverse range of clients including, FIFA, Disney, National Trust, Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, RSPB, Two Oceans Aquarium, Six Flags, Dubailand, National Maritime Museum, Gold Reef City, Pretoria Zoo, and Sentosa.
He is supported by an excellent team he built up with the consulting arm of Vision XS and has completed more than 150 strategic leisure projects worldwide using analytical software and data owned by Vision XS.
Ingrid Sinclair has spent the past 15 years working in content development and digital marketing. She has worked on travel and tourism, fashion, food, finance, and fast-moving consumer goods brands; her previous clients include Discovery, Castle Lite, Clere Beauty, the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital Trust, Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, South African Tourism, and Cape Town Tourism. Her relationship with the Two Oceans Aquarium began in 2010 as a service provider and, thoroughly bitten by the Aquarium bug, she moved in-house in 2015 in the role of online content executive. She then stepped into the role of Marketing Manager in 2018. Ingrid holds an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cape Town.
Jakob Wahlis the executive director and vice president, Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) Operations at IAAPA, the global association for the attractions industry. He serves as head of the IAAPA EMEA office in Brussels, which is responsible for providing the attractions industry with valuable educational offerings, government relations services, and the region’s largest industry trade show: IAAPA Expo Europe.
Wahl has enjoyed a 15-year career in the attractions industry. He worked with IAAPA for five years as a programme manager in the European office before joining the management of Europa-Park in Rust, Germany and also fulfilling the role as the company’s spokesperson. Since returning to IAAPA in 2017, he has overseen the growth and development of IAAPA’s member services in the EMEA region.He holds the French and German Diploma in business economics.