Meet Our Editorial Staff
By James Shillinglaw
September 27, 2012 11:45 PM
You may have noticed we’ve made a few additions to our editorial staff in the past month, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to let you now about those changes, as well update you on who covers what beats here at TravelPulse.com, as well as our sister monthly magazines, Agent@Home and Vacation Agent.
First, I’m pleased to announce that Nick Verrastro, a veteran travel trade journalist, has joined us managing editor for our two magazines. Nick, as many of you may know, has been a travel journalist for more than 30 years, first at Travel Agent magazine, then at ASTA Travel News and subsequently as executive editor for Travel Trade, where he spent much of his career. At Travel Trade he was responsible for the weekly newsmagazines, monthly Cruise Trade, Tour Trade (then Home Based Trade), as well as the websites and about 50 supplements a year and three trade shows. He knows travel inside out and is a great editor and a very welcome addition to our team. You can reach Nick, who is based in New Jersey, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Second, Claudette Covey, yet another veteran travel trade journalist, is our new executive editor-hotels and resorts replacing Kerry Medina, who has joined the Singapore Tourism Board. We wish Kerry well, but we think we’ve found a wonderful solution to her departure in Claudette. I’ve been trying to get Claudette to join us for several years now and she has freelanced extensively in the past. Claudette began her travel journalism career at ASTA Travel News, but also has worked for Travel Age, Travel Agent and Travel Weekly. Beyond hotels, she also covers Mexico, Florida, U.S. South and Southeast, New York, New England and Canada. Claudette, who is based in upstate New York, also covers airlines in the eastern U.S. You can reach her at email@example.com.
I also wanted to give you a rundown on the rest of our team – and it is indeed a veteran group. I was trying to add up all the years of experience in travel journalism the other day and came up with something like well over 160 years for our just seven of our team combined. What follows are the beat areas that each of our editors (except Claudette) cover with their emails.
David Cogswell (firstname.lastname@example.org) is executive editor-tours and packages, David, who is based in New Jersey near New York City, also covers the Middle East & Africa and backs up on Europe and Pacific Asia. In addition, he covers airlines in the Middle East & Africa.
Mimi Kmet (email@example.com) is executive editor-travel agents, but also covers the Western U.S., including California, Hawaii, Las Vegas, the Pacific Northwest, Alaska, the Southwest and the Western U.S. in general. Mimi, who is based in the Los Angeles area, also now covers car rentals and airlines based in the western U.S.
Brian Major (firstname.lastname@example.org) is executive editor covering the Caribbean, South America and Central America. Brian, who is based in New York City, also covers travel insurance as well as airlines in the Caribbean, South America and Central America region.
Theresa Masek (email@example.com) is editor in chief of Vacation Agent magazine, but also leads our cruise coverage (though Brian, Claudette and Mimi have all covered cruises extensively as well). Theresa, who is based near Chicago, also covers the U.S. Midwest. She also covers airlines based in the Midwest and central U.S.
James Ruggia (firstname.lastname@example.org) is executive editor covering Europe and Pacific Asia, where he’s considered the senior journalist in the travel trade field. James, who is based in New Jersey near New York City, also covers rail travel and airlines in Europe and Pacific Asia, and serves as back-up tours editor for David.
You’ll note that not a single editorial staff member is based in our company’s Westampton, N.J., headquarters. We all work virtually – and have been putting out our magazines and this website that way since we began our publications back in 2004. In fact, most of our editors don’t spend very much time at home – they are constantly traveling to uncover news about the travel products, destinations and travel information that you need.
We’re still moving some beats around, and you’ll note that we haven’t assigned travel technology, but expect some news on that front shortly. For the moment, please send all travel technology news my way. Again, you can reach me by emailing email@example.com.
So please welcome Nick and Claudette to our team. I think you’ll find they will help us serve your information needs superbly going forward.
James Shillinglaw is editor in chief and editorial director of travAlliancemedia, which produces TravelPulse.com, Agent@Home magazine and Vacation Agent magazine.