2011 Los Angeles Event
– 2010 Attendee
If you are tired of two weeks of vacation time and want to break away from the cube to explore the world, then don’t miss out on this event!
Date: Tuesday, October 18th | Doors: 7pm
India’s Oven | 11645 Wilshire Blvd. – 2nd Fl.
Proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to the Books to Bhutan Library Project. The library space has been donated so Books to Bhutan can help build the shelves, stock them, train local people to run the library and more. This event will include an Indian buffet dinner in the ticket price.
NOTE: There are no refunds once tickets are purchased. If you wish to transfer your ticket to someone else, you will need to update your attendee information (including all survey questions). Upon registering, create an EventBrite login in order to access your account information later.
Los Angeles Keynote
Richard Bangs has oft been called the father of modern adventure travel, and the pioneer in travel that makes a difference, travel with a purpose. He has spent 30 years as an explorer and communicator, and along the way led first descents of 35 rivers around the globe, including the Yangtze in China and the Zambezi in Southern Africa. He recently co-directed the IMAX Film, Mystery of the Nile, and co-authored the Putnam book of the same name.
In addition to many other travel writing and digital projects, he is currently producing and hosting the new PBS series, Richard Bangs’ Adventures with Purpose.
Website: Adventures with Purpose
Los Angeles Moderator
Jen Leo is a leading authority in the online travel world. The award-winning editor of the popular five-book humor series, Sand In My Bra (Travelers’ Tales), Jen encourages others to hit the road as often as they can. She launched the travel blog for the Los Angeles Times in 2007 and was their lead blogger for three years before moving to London for a year.
Currently Jen writes the weekly Web Buzz travel column for Los Angeles Times and co-hosts the popular podcast, This Week in Travel. She was an early adopter of Twitter (@jenleo) and can also be found on Google+ (Jennifer Leo).
Los Angeles Panelists
Doris Gallan and Jacob Frank
Doris and Jacob quit the rat race in 2006 to pursue their life-long passion of traveling. The two left their corporate jobs, sold their Los Angeles-area home and everything they owned to travel the world for five continuous years. The couple went around the world twice, visiting all seven continents and 50+ countries.
The first ’round-the-world trip lasted 26 months, spread through 42 countries on six continents (including Antarctica), and used up three backpacks. The second RTW voyage was less ambitious: a dozen countries on three continents over two and a half years. The much slower pace was due to the decision to live nine months in Mexico, six in Costa Rica, and a year in China where Doris wrote books while Jacob taught English as a foreign language.
Sarah and her husband Gabe initially were planning on working abroad for a year in order to travel more when they thought, “What if we just travel for a year instead?” In the course of a year they visited 19 countries on 4 continents, spending time with family and friends along the way. They made a conscious choice to travel through each country slowly, even spending three months to study Spanish and participate in World Cup fever in Buenos Aires.
While naturally curious, Sarah found herself lacking the bravery she wanted to be able to live up to the adventures the year threw at her. She began writing stories of her battles with eating bugs, swimming in anaconda infested waters and fighting thieves in Buenos Aires at Fraidypants Princess Travels the Globe. Gabe and Sarah have recently finished their year abroad and are residing in Los Angeles.
Lisa is the author of Radio Shangri-La, a memoir about how she went to help start-up a youth-oriented radio station in Bhutan at the dawn of democratic rule. For the 25 years before Crown published that book, Napoli was a journalist in print (NY Times), TV (MSNBC), radio (Marketplace), and online. She holds a weekly party at her apartment in downtown Los Angeles and is helping to raise money to build a library in Bhutan.
Michelle is an art dealer promoting the disappearing signboard arts from Nepal. She has traveled extensively throughout Asia and believes in a slow and local approach to travel. Using local transport, she gets to know the country and its people through assimilation. She prides herself on comfortable budget travel and long daily walks.
After 25 years as an Assistant Film Editor for such diverse projects as the Spider-man Trilogy and Bob Altman’s The Player, she now travels the world, writing, blogging and commissioning Fair Trade artworks. She is fluent in French and English, with a smattering of Spanish, Nepali and Thai, and in her free time enjoys photography and cooking. She has traveled to over 38 countries with South Africa and Botswana being her next trip.
Meet Your Hosts: Lisa & George Rajna
Lisa and George Rajna spent eleven months wandering Southeast Asia from Indonesia to Mongolia where they fell in love, got engaged, and now as a married couple are writing a book about their journey.
Lisa is an accomplished travel agent, blogger, speaker, science teacher and member of the Traveler’s Century Club, a unique travel club limited to travelers who have visited one hundred or more countries. Look for her underwater as a PADI divemaster, in the science lab at the Brawerman Elementary School, or in Brentwood at Simply Science Camp. Lisa’s monthly column, “Science and Your Child,” can be found at LA Mom Magazine. She also writes for the travel section at Technorati.com and blogs on the Jewish Journal, WeSaidGoTravel and WeSaidGoScience.
George is a bilingual speech therapist who has traveled to 100 countries across six continents. He composes music on the guitar and ukulele, and spent two years working in rural education for Peace Corps Paraguay. George recently took a career break for one year in Asia and can’t wait to take another extended travel adventure to exotic locations.