25 September 2012

Conference on Sustainability on Statia

Regional and Local presenters at Statia Conference on Sustainability

~Inaugural sustainable conference and exhibition scheduled for 25 – 27 September at the Mike Van Putten Youth Centre ~

ORANJESTAD, St. Eustatius (August, 24th, 2012) – The St. Eustatius Tourism Development Foundation (STDF) is preparing to host a major sustainable conference from September 25th – 27th 2012, during which delegates will discuss critical issues relating to the island’s sustainability.
The conference which promises to be very interesting, will be cheered by local, regional and international presenters preaching and bolstering the importance of sustainable development. Learn from leading experts who are familiar with the importance of sustainable practices. These professional are well prepared to share their knowledge, exchange experience and answer any questions during their different panel discussions.
It is very important to be involved in such a knowledgeable and cultural conference “Powering Sustainable Development. “I am proud to be a part of the sustainable circle, a circle that is designed to make the environment a better environment for all of us. I have learned to be more conscious and I appreciate my beautiful island even more. The entire island is in my opinion should prosper from this conference”, said Public Relations Officer Teena Lopes.
The conference is designed to challenge tourism planners, policymakers, stakeholders and the general public to develop and implement strategies and practices that can sustain Statia’s limited resources.
The STDF has confirmed a number of industry experts who are more familiar with Sustainable Development. It is the expectation of the organizers that all participants will acknowledge the golden opportunities that this conference will provide and to network and share ideas with these industry experts.
Hannah Madden: Hannah has a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental studies. Before coming to St. Eustatius, she worked for International Humanitarian NGOs Amnesty International and Child Helpline International. She has been employed by local nature conservation foundation, STENAPA, as National Park Ranger/Education Officer. She spends her days in the Quill maintaining trails, giving guided hikes and conducting research on terrestrial species.
Earlston McPhee, representative of the Bahamas on the International Task Force for Sustainable Tourism Development will be a presenter at the conference. Mr. McPhee is responsible for Sustainable Tourism development and related Projects at The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism. He has over twenty years experience in the tourism industry. He holds a BSC in Business Administration from Oklahoma State University with a focus in Marketing Management and Finance and a Masters in Economics from West Virginia University. He is currently the Chairman of the National Coastal Awareness Committee He also represents The Bahamas on the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s Committee on Sustainable Tourism Development.
Diana Pearl Hendrickson-Fleming, a local presenter at the conference. Diana has a Bachelor in Business Administration from the University of the Netherlands Antilles (UNA) as well as a Master in Business Administration from the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. Ms. Hendrickson started out her career as an Information and Export Promotion officer with the Central Government department of Trade, Industry and Employment. Ms. Hendrickson is currently contracted as the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Adviser to the island Government of St. Eustatius. The SME project falls under the Social Initiative Program of Government and is funded by the Dutch funding agency, USONA.
Glenn Faires, owner of Golden rock Dive Center. Glenn has worked in the tourism industry for over 32 years in 4 different countries. Over the past 18 years he has been actively involved in the promotion of his business and the island St. Eustatius. Golden Rock Dive Center is recognized as a PADI 5 Star dive center with satisfied customers from around the world. After years in upper level sales and marketing he decided to make a change of life and to spend more time outdoors and with a passion for scuba diving he started looking for a place to establish himself. After several years of looking, on a weekend trip he found what he was looking for, a small quiet island with friendly people and world class diving.
Mr. José Juan Terrasa-Soler out of Puerto Ricois a landscape architect, ecologist, development consultant, university professor, manager, and business owner with over 18 years of professional experience. Mr. Terrasa-Soler is currently Director of Planning and Development at the Puerto Rico Tourism Company, and Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture at the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico, in San Juan. He has held executive positions in both private and public corporations. His work as a designer has been published and exhibited in Spain, Puerto Rico, and the United States.Mr. Terrasa-Soler was Manager of the Environmental Business Unit of CSA Architects & Engineers, the largest consulting firm in the Caribbean, where he led a team of 30 scientists and engineers, and offered the full spectrum of services related to environment and development.
Ingrid Walther owner and operator of Scubaqua Dive Center is a Swiss national. Graduate of The Hotel Management School in Switzerland and is specialized in tourism marketing, has worked for many years in the tourism sector in Switzerland and became a specialist of congress, sport events and incentives organization. She discovered diving in the cold Swiss lakes 15 years ago and became a PADI and CMAS dive instructor. She decided to leave Switzerland with her husband and enjoy her hobby as daily life. They both moved to Statia in 2006 and took over “Scubaqua Dive Center”. Ingrid is now in charge of the administration and promotion of the dive center and of course continues to dive, especially with her repeaters guests.”
 For more information on the Statia Sustainable Conference, including how to register, visitwww.statiatourism.com
 The St. Eustatius Tourism Development Foundation is the agency responsible for promoting and developing tourism on St. Eustatius. The mission is to get the island Government to lend greater priority to tourism by providing adequate funding to effectively and efficiently promote tourism in key markets; ensuring a quality tourism product by introducing and controlling the minimum standard requirements; preparing future generations to take on greater responsibilities within this sector by means of teaching tourism as a subject on levels of the education system.
The STDF office is located at Fort Oranje, Oranjestad, St. Eustatius, Dutch Caribbean. Tel +599 318 2433, Fax +599 318 2433, Email
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