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9th Annual Presidential Forum on Africa Tourism

Monday, September 22nd, 2014

10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Eisner & Lubin Auditorium, Kimmel Center, New York University

60 Washington Square South (Between Thompson and Laguardia)

NYU Africa House and the Africa Travel Association held the 9th Annual Presidential Forum on Africa Tourism on Monday, September 22, 2014, on the occasion of the United Nations General Assembly. This high-profile event brought together tourism leaders from across Africa to spotlight the critical role tourism plays in driving socio-economic growth and development.

Following the Presidential Forum program, this year ATA launched travel trade industry sessions on U.S.-Africa Travel Trends; Attracting the Millennial Traveler; and Workshops and One-on-one Consultations with travel industry leaders. This session was curated by RW Social.

Over two hundred people, including travel and tourism professionals, airline and hotel representatives, diplomatic representatives, African Diaspora leaders, media, faculty, and students attended. NYU Africa House and the ATA began hosting the Presidential Forum in 2006. Since then, over 20 African countries and representatives from the African Development Bank, United Nations World Tourism Organization, World Travel and Tourism Council, and the World Bank have participated. Last year, we welcomed the President of the Republic of Uganda, H.E. Yoweri Museveni.


9:00 am – 1:00 pm: Open Forum on African Tourism

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm: Lunch Reception

2:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Travel Trade Sessions


– Prof. Yaw Nyarko, Director, NYU Africa House, NYU Professor of Economics

– Mr. Edward Bergman, Executive Director, Africa Travel Association

– Master of Ceremony, Mr. Ali Velshi, Host of Real Money with Ali Velshi, Al Jazeera America

Open Forum on African Tourism

– Hon. Walter Mzembi, Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Republic of Zimbabwe; President, Africa Travel Association

– Hon. Fatou Mas Jobe-Njie, Minister of Tourism and Culture, Republic of The Gambia

– Hon. Phyllis Kandie, Cabinet Secretary for East African Affairs, Trade and Tourism, Republic of Kenya

– Hon. Dr. Maria Mutagamba, Minister of Tourism, Wildlife & Antiquities, Republic of Uganda

– Hon. Lazaro Nyalandu, Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism, United Republic of Tanzania

– Hon. Elizabeth Ofusu-Adjare, Minister of Culture, Tourism and Creative Arts, Republic of Ghana

Premier Sponsors:

  • Ethiopian Airlines

  • Tanzania National Parks    

2014 Official Congress Airline Sponsor:

  • Brussels Airlines

Travel Trade Sessions supported by Wagner Student Alliance for Africa (WSAFA)

2:00 – 2:50 pm: Travel Trends Talk


– Mark Walton, Onyx Global Marketing


– Jim Brody, President & Chief DMO Nerd, A Sense of Place

– Rumit Mehta, Founder & CEO, Immersion Journeys

– Cherae Robinson, Founder, Rare Customs & Afripolitans

3:00 – 3:45 pm: Breaking the Mold: How Younger Generations Differ from Past Generations


– Katka Lapelosova, Managing Editor & Director of Social Media, Matador Network


– Marisa Costa, Director of NEXT, ProTravel International & Tzell Travel Group

– Gilad Goren, Founder & Executive Director, Travel+Social Good

– David Kartagener, Vice President, Kartagener Associates Inc.;  Co-Founder & Director of Operations, Young Travel Professionals

4:00 – 5:00 pm: Expert Workshops

Small groups had the opportunity for one-on-one time with industry experts who will provide personalized guidance on topics of interest.

Social Media & Marketing: 

– Bob Knorpp, Chief Strategist, The Cool Beans Group; Host, The Bean Cast Podcast

– Mo Krochmal, Executive Editor, Social Media News NY

Content Creation/Strategy: 

– Sam Slaughter, Vice President of Content, Contently

– Ethan Gelber, Director of Content, RW Social; Co-Founder, Outbounding

Trends & Brand Strategy: 

– Jim Brody, President & Chief DMO Nerd, A Sense of Place

– Cherae Robinson, Founder, Rare Customs/Tastemakers Africa

Public Relations: 

– Joey Parr, Strategic Communications & Media Relations Consultant