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Board of Directors

NTA is governed by a member-elected volunteer board of directors, which is advised by member volunteer networks and committees. NTA is based in North America, but its industry and its membership spans the globe. If you would like to contact a member of the NTA Board, please log in to the NTA Online member directory, or contact NTA at headquarters@ntastaff.com. Interested in becoming a leader? Contact NTA’s Jennifer Royse, CTP.

The board governs. NTA president & staff manages. 

Executive Committee

  • Chase Poffenberger

    Chair | Academic Travel Abroad

    Email
  • Debra Asberry, CTP

    Vice Chair | Women Traveling Together

    Email
  • Jerry Varner, CTP

    Secretary | Making Memories Tours

    Email
  • Jim Warren, CTP

    Immediate Past Chair | Anderson Vacations

    Email
  • Kelly Dean

    DMO Director | Ottawa Tourism

    Email
  • Cory Mace

    Tour Supplier Director | Badger Bus

    Email

Directors

  • Marcela Laukova, CTP

    Discover Slovakia Tours

    Email
  • Nish Patel

    Mayflower Cruises and Tours

    Email
  • Monique van Dijk-Seppola

    Scandinavia Tours

    Email
  • Fraser Neave, CTP

    Wells Gray Tours, Ltd.

    Email
  • Christina Werner, CTP

    Custom Holidays

    Email
  • Michelle Pino

    Northeast Unlimited Tours

    Email

Tour Supplier Directors

  • Ryan Robutka

    VIA Rail Canada

    Email
  • Tom White

    U.S. Space and Rocket Center

    Email

DMO Directors

  • Dawn Burns

    Deadwood Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau

    Email
  • Linda Horowitz

    Visit Fairfax

    Email

Director at Large

  • Theresa Nemetz

    Milwaukee Food & City Tours

    Email
  • Past Presidents

    • 2020: Jim Warren, CTP
    • 2019: Paul Larsen
    • 2018: J. Chris Babb
    • 2017: Jay Smith
    • 2016: Justin Osbon
    • 2015: Jorge Cazenave, CTP
    • 2014: Paul Nakamoto
    • 2013: Mark Hoffmann, CTP
    • 2012: Jim Reddekopp, Jr.
    • 2010-11: Catherine Greteman
    • 2009: Michele Michalewicz, CTP
    • 2008: Bob Hoelscher, CTP
    • 2007: Randy Julian
    • 2006: Judith Thomas, CTP
    • 2005: Ann Thomas, CTP
    • 2004: Mitchell Sussman, CTP
    • 2003: Charlie McIlvain, CTP
    • 2002: Kathy LeTarte, CTP
    • 2001: Ed Dresel
    • 2000: Mark Hoffmann, CTP
    • 1999: Robert Brennan, CTP
    • 1998: Keith Griffall, CTP
    • 1997: Janice McIlwain
    • 1996: Robert Everidge
    • 1995: Gerald B. “Jerry” DiPietro
    • 1994: S. Burkett “Doc” Milner, CTP
    • 1993: Dottie Maitland, CTP
    • 1992: John P. Stachnik Sr., CTP, CTC
    • 1991: Thomas R. Frenkel, CTP
    • 1990: George Guenther, CTP
    • 1989: Dan Dipert
    • 1988: Pete Anderson, CTP
    • 1987: David V. Lippincott, CTP
    • 1986: Francis “MIkie” Wall, CTP
    • 1985: Lois Anderson
    • 1984: Harold E. Mishnick, Sr.
    • 1983: R. Bruce Beckham, CTP
    • 1981-82: William Grossman
    • 1979-80: Earl L. Harmon
    • 1977-78: Lynn B. “Spike” Herzig
    • 1975-76: Edwin Bortner
    • 1973-74: Joseph A. Casser
    • 1971-72: Mary H. Lee
    • 1969-70: Maurice P. Hughes
    • 1967-68: Aurthur C. Tauck Jr.
    • 1965-66: Robert L. McMullen
    • 1963-64: Stanley A. Parker
    • 1961-62: Arnold C. Rigby
    • 1958-60: George S. Talmage
    • 1951-57: Robert H. Shattuck
  • Leadership Requirements

    Members are chosen for committees based on several criteria. Here is a sampling of guidelines used in the selection process:

    • Representation of different basic types of members is essential. A variety of tour operator, tour supplier and DMO components, geographic diversity, and mix from the large, medium and small companies provide a good balance. Different viewpoints are important in achieving a well-balanced group.
    • A member’s role within his/her company or organization is considered.
    • Retention of selected past volunteer leaders is valuable to ensure continuity.
    • Appointment of new members ensures fresh ideas and perspectives. It is NTA’s goal to avoid over-taxing those who have made a contribution over a period of time.
  • President Bio

    Catherine Prather, CTP, President, National Tour Association

    Catherine joined the National Tour Association team in 1994 and currently serves as president, the chief staff role. She focuses on strategic continuity, member engagement and professional development to ensure NTA’s long-term growth and viability.

    On a daily basis, Catherine draws connections and seeks collaboration among the association’s staff experts, NTA members and industry counterparts. She also guides the team to strengthen engagement and business connections among the NTA community.

    Catherine has been appointed to the U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board, which serves as an advisory body to the Secretary of Commerce on government policies and programs that affect the U.S. travel and tourism industry and offers counsel on current and emerging issues. She also actively supports Tourism Cares, NTA’s official philanthropy, and sits on the Tourism Cares Board of Directors. Other leadership roles include the Retailing and Tourism Management Advisory Board for the University of Kentucky and the Kentucky Advisory Committee for the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.

    A native of Georgetown, Kentucky, Catherine has earned NTA’s Certified Tour Professional designation and is a graduate of Transylvania University with a bachelor’s degree in English.

Become an NTA Leader

NTA relies heavily on member volunteers to assist in guiding the association and enhancing its programs. The Leadership Team comprises members who serve on networks and advisory groups, which are a vital link between the strategic direction set by the NTA Board of Directors and the NTA staff which implements the strategies. The bottom line: it all benefits the membership. If you are interested in serving as a leadership volunteer, please email Jennifer Royse, CTP.

  • DMO Network Core Group

    Members

    • Chair | Frances Manzitto, Visit Clarksville
    • Kate Cox, Cochise County Tourism Council
    • Wendy Dobrzynski, Circle Wisconsin
    • Roger Dudley, Experience Columbus
    • Greg Eckhart, Travel Oregon
    • Renee Eichelberger, Explore St. Louis
    • Lindsay Hill, Destination DC
    • Melissa Hopper, VisitNorfolk
    • Mark Kowalewski, Visit Prince William
    • Scott McCrea, Explore Fairbanks
    • Todd Stallbaumer, Oklahoma Tourism & Recreation Department
    • Jeannette Yetman, Destination St. John’s

    Staff liaison

    • Todd Probus, CTP
  • Tour Supplier Network Core Group

    Members

    • Chair | Ryan Sanders, Louisiana Motorcoach
    • Dan Flores, Maverick Aviation Group
    • Eddie Lutz, Ark Encounter
    • Rachel Paxman, Canyonlands by Night & Day
    • Ryan Robutka, VIA Rail Canada
    • Gina Romanelli, National Constitution Center
    • Lois Stoltzfus CTIS, Amish Experience
    • Holly Williamson, Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum
    • Janet Young, Plimoth Patuxet Museums

    Staff liaison

    • Todd Probus, CTP
  • Buyers Network Core Group

    Members

    • Chair | Julie Kozikowski, Destinations Unlimited
    • Denise Buchanan, Appina Travel GmbH
    • Aldo Caronia, Michelangelo International Travel
    • Charmaine Edwards, Great Tour Experiences PTY LTD
    • Rolland Graham, Mountain Outin Tours
    • Michael Holzer, Educational Travel Adventures
    • Shannon Larsen, Ed-Ventures
    • Paul Larsen, Ed-Ventures
    • Nayaz Noor, 39 Degrees South
    • Justin Osbon, Image Tours, Inc.
    • Timothy Patrick, Mayflower Cruises and Tours
    • Sarna Rose, Poland Culinary Vacations
    • Dustin Teichman, Good Times Travel, Inc.
    • Jerry Varner, Making Memories Tours
    • Jim Warren, Anderson Vacations
    • Taunya Wolfe Finn, Wolfe Adventures & Tours, LLC

    Staff liaison

    • Todd Probus, CTP
  • NTA Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Group

    Purpose

    The NTA Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Group will advise the association’s staff and leadership on cultivating a culture of inclusion; developing and providing opportunities for deeper learning and the integration of DEI in the packaged travel landscape; and expanding the diversity of NTA membership and partnerships.

    Members

    • Portia Conerly – Stay Arlington, chair
    • Lisa Catron – Memphis Tourism
    • Willma Harvey, CTP  – River Parishes Tourist Commission
    • Jalyssa Gasmen – Visit Tucson
    • Chris Babb – Group Tour Company
    • Ted Nelson – Hospitality Tours
    • Paul Nakamoto – Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco
    • Roni Weiss – Travel Unity
    • Michael Lo Presti – Vamonos Tours

    Board and staff liaisons

    • NTA Chair Chase Poffenberger, ex officio
    • NTA Board Director Linda Horowitz, board liaison
    • NTA president Catherine Prather, CTP, staff liaison
  • Faith Travel Advisory Group

    Members

    • Henrique Abreu, Gemm Travel – Holy Land
    • Sue Barbanel, Travel Insured International
    • Denise Buchanan, Appina Travel GmbH
    • Peter Craddick, Globetrotters Travel & Tours
    • Mete Gurel, TRIPOTOUR LLC
    • Eddie Lutz, Ark Encounter
    • Connie VanderPoel, Southwest Tours
    • Janet Young, Plimoth Plantation

    Staff liaison

    • Todd Probus, CTP
  • Board Alliances Team

    Purpose

    This cross-functional vetting team will use criteria for the selection of partners ensuring that future alliances are supportive of NTA’s updated strategic requirements and long-term business goals. The Alliances Team will use this criterion to conduct a thorough evaluation of the prospective partner before any commitments are made.

    Members

    • Chair| Jerry Varner, Making Memories Tours
    • Tom White, U.S. Space & Rocket Center
    • Fraser Neave, Wells Gray Tours, Ltd.
    • Linda Horowitz, Visit Fairfax
    • Marcela Laukova, Discover Slovakia Tours
    • Theresa Nemetz, Milwaukee Food & City Tours
    • Jim Warren, Anderson Vacations
    • Christina Werner, Custom Holidays
    • Ex-officio | Chase Poffenberger, Academic Travel Abroad
    • Ex-officio | Debra Asberry, CTP, Women Traveling Together

    Staff liaison

    • Jennifer Royse, CTP
  • Board Governance Committee

    Purpose

    To oversee the NTA Board’s policy governance process and performance. The Governance Committee develops and delivers education and orientation as it relates to the governance structure and shall conduct a thorough review of the NTA Board Effectiveness evaluation and move forward recommendations to align NTA’s policy governance work with its strategic direction.

    Members

    • Chair | Debra Asberry, CTP, Women Traveling Together
    • Kelly Dean, Ottawa Tourism
    • Ryan Robutka, VIA Rail Canada
    • Cory Mace, North Central Group-Hilton & Marriott Hotels
    • Dawn Burns, Deadwood CVB
    • Nish Patel, Mayflower Cruises and Tours
    • Monique van Dijk-Seppola, Scandinavia Tours
    • Michelle Pino, Northeast Unlimited Tours
    • Ex-officio | Chase Poffenberger, Academic Travel Abroad
    • Ex-officio | Jerry Varner, Making Memories Tours

    Staff liaison

    • Jennifer Royse, CTP
  • Board Nominating Committee

    Purpose

    To select board and elected officer nominees and oversee the election process. The committee recruits candidates and promotes board services throughout the year and at NTA events, establishes the election timeline annually, and interviews candidates and selects the most qualified candidate per available seat (i.e. nominates a slate of candidates).(Members of the Nominating Committee are determined each year per the structure outlined in the NTA Election Policies and Procedures.)

    Members

    • Chair | Jim Warren, CTP; Anderson Vacations
    • Chase Poffenberger, Academic Travel Abroad, ex-officio
    • Debra Asberry, CTP, Women Traveling Together, ex-officio
    • Lisa Catron, Memphis Tourism
    • Cathy Greteman, CTP, Star Destinations
    • Michael Hoizer, Educational Travel Adventures
    • Matthew Mauro, Meridian Guided Travel
    • Dee Dee McGowan, Couer d’Alene Casino Resort
    • Ted Nelson, Hospitality Tours
    • Keith Somers, Select Travel Services

    Staff liaison

    • Jennifer Royse, CTP

Interested in volunteering? Contact:Jennifer Royse, CTP jennifer.royse@ntastaff.com+1.859.264.6576

  • NTA has provided us the research and atmosphere to brainstorm new ways of doing things and fresh additions to trips, which has led to successful business development. Rachel Ranck, WorldStrides, NTA member since 1985
  • What NTA does is provide the right buyers. They provide the right people who make decisions. This is what makes this organization one I can’t afford to take off my list. John Stachnik CTP, Mayflower Tours, NTA member since 1979
  • I came to NTA to build a business, and that’s exactly what it did for us, as sales came in. For me, it’s the only outlet for new ideas. Matthew Squire, Select Travel Service (UK), NTA member since 2002
  • NTA membership and our attendance at the convention have provided us with more clients, more business relationships and more ideas. We are proud to belong to NTA. Daniele Panzarin, Target Travel (Italy), NTA member since 2007
  • The No. 1 member benefit of NTA has to be all the great professional and personal connections we’ve made over the past decade. Taunya Wolfe Finn, CTP, Wolfe Adventures & Tours, NTA member since 2005
  • We have not found a more reliable, more profitable or more consistent tourism venue in which to acquire new business than NTA. Diane Hohnstein, Hospitality Management Services, NTA member since 1999
  • I believe attending the NTA conferences allow me to create valuable relationships and work together with U.S. operators in creating great Scotland product. Maggie Anderson, VisitScotland, NTA member since 2003
  • NTA events provide us with beneficial networking with many top tour operators. It’s national and international in scope providing a global perspective. Tim and Elaine Moulder, Brilliant Edventures, NTA member since 2015