Founder, WorldTravelList, LLC.
Nicholas Kontis was born on of one of the most breathtaking islands in the world, Santorini, Greece, and raised in America’s culture capital of San Francisco. He started out as a world traveler at a young age, going back and forth between California and Greece every summer. But it would be a backpacking trip around the world at age 24 that would prove to be a life changing experience. After traveling by car, train, plane, bike, boat and hitchhiking throughout the globe, it was this journey of a lifetime that led Kontis not only to a lifelong love of travel but to a career in the travel industry.
Nick has been featured as a guest speaker on both radio and television. He has been mentioned by Lonely Planet’s Tony Wheeler as an airfare guru, and frequently referred to as the “father of around the world airfares.” Arthur Frommer once said, “If Jules Verne were alive today he would use Nick Kontis to go around the world in 80 days.” He’s also a guest writer for Huffington Post Travel. Perhaps the greatest claim to fame for Nick personally is that many travel writers and other travel experts have cited him as the inspiration for their decision to set out on careers in the industry.
Advisor, WorldTravelList, LLC.
Richard Bangs has often been called the father of modern adventure travel, having spent decades as an explorer and communicator, pioneering “virtual expeditions” on the World Wide Web and leading first descents of 35 rivers around the world. At present he lives in Venice, California.
Richard Bangs has spent 40 years as an explorer, leading first descents of 35 rivers around the globe, including the Yangtze in China and the Zambezi in Southern Africa. During that period he founded Sobek Expeditions, the first multi-national river running company and the pioneering outfitter for global active wilderness travel.
Author and Producer
Richard has published more than 1000 magazine articles, 19 books, a score of documentaries, several CD-ROMs, and all manner of digital media. He has lectured at the Smithsonian, the National Geographic Society, the Explorers Club and many other notable venues. He writes a semi-regular feature for HuffingtonPost.com, occasionally freelances for other print and online publications, and produces and hosts “Richard Bangs’ Adventures with Purpose, as seen on national public television.
In the early 1990s Sobek merged with Mountain Travel to become Mountain Travel-Sobek (mtsobek.com), then as now a leader in international adventure and eco-travel. He began TerraQuest, one of the first online travel projects, and went on to Microsoft as founder and editor-in-chief of Mungo Park, a pioneering interactive publishing effort. He was part of the founding executive team of Expedia.com, and served as its Editor-at-Large. He was creator and publisher of Expedia Travels Magazine (published in partnership with Ziff-Davis), executive producer of Expedia Radio, and founder and executive director of Expedia Cafes.
He has also served as president of Outward Bound; created the “Well Traveled” series for Slate.com; was founding editor and executive producer of MSNBC’s “Great Escapes”; and produced “Richard Bangs Adventures” for Yahoo! He lives in Southern California with his family.
Andrew Van Valer
Advisor, WorldTravelList, LLC.
30+ Years of Experience in business being focus to help small businesses accelerate their growth. High passion for social enterprises and local businesses supporting a community. Startup team member, leadership role and key contributor to several highly-successful, high-growth Silicon Valley startups.All of which have either been taken public on the London stock exchange and NASDAQ or have been sold to large corporations for $200m or more.
Board Member and founder of several non-profits; fostering and revitalizing entrepreneurship and local economies personally mentored and coached over 100 entrepreneurs and startups. Taught them how to find the right business and how to subsequently build it into a financially sustainable enterprise. Advised and showed hundreds of start-up entrepreneurs how to use direct sales businesses as highly- effective business incubators with ethics and integrity. In the process researched over 4,000 different MLM and Direct Sales opportunities.
Leadership role for numerous worldwide technology releases, which included: computer software, internet services, digital photography, and cell phones. Setup International operations for several market-leading corporations in Germany, Italy, France and Ireland and also acted as an advisor/liaison for International Government Agencies in some of these countries.
Developed valuable expertise in International Operations and cultural differences, awareness and best practice.