Last updated on November 2nd, 2023
Featured image: Anna Pollock, winner of the 2022 JourneyWoman Award
Award Presented at the Bessie Awards at the Women in Travel Summit
By Carolyn Ray, CEO, JourneyWoman
Last night, I had the honour to announce that Anna Pollock, Founder of Conscious Travel, is the 2022 Recipient of the JourneyWoman Award. This Awardi is given in honour of the late Evelyn Hannon, the founder of JourneyWoman, and recognizes a woman who has demonstrated a long-term commitment to working in and making the travel industry better.
I spoke with Anna, who lives in the UK, earlier this week. She told me “We are all learning. Women understand intuitively that we are not separate from nature. We are nature.” Anna’s unique approach to regenerative tourism, land restoration and shifting status quo thinking on sustainability reminds us that women’s voices are needed to create meaningful change in the world.
Anna was nominated by women in the Wanderful and JourneyWoman communities last fall. In March 2021, nominees were shortlisted by Wanderful, JourneyWoman and the 2021 JourneyWoman Award winner, Alessandra Alonso. Final voting was done by previous WITS participants and Bessie award winners.
Anna’s nominee said: “Anna has been a visionary and role model within the tourism industry by leading the conversation around regenerative practices for decades. Long before the idea of “regenerative tourism” because trendy, Anna was working with destinations and talking about the importance of recognizing tourism within the framework of a living, breathing ecosystem, and not something separate from the world in which we live, travel, and work.”
I’ll be travelling to London this fall and plan to give Anna her award personally. We’ll also be hosting a webinar with her soon so that you can meet her and learn more about her contributions to women’s travel. Stay tuned!
Watch Anna’s acceptance video
About Anna Pollock, an innovator in regenerative travel
Anna is the founder of Conscious Travel, an alternative model to mass industrial tourism that develops conscious hosts capable of generating a higher net return for their business and host community.
She has over 50 years’ experience in tourism as an independent consultant, strategist, international speaker and change agent and is an acclaimed thought leader in the emerging field of regenerative tourism. She has undertaken seminal work in many aspects of tourism, notably in education, sustainability and technology. Her current focus is on the intimate relationship between food, farming and hospitality. She has put out a discussion paper Hosts For Life, designed to create closer collaboration between hosts, farmers, and food producers at the community level as a catalyst for regenerative development.
Anna has worked with the Canadian Tourism Commission, PATA, European Travel Commission, Tourism British Columbia, the Australian Tourism Export Council, Tourism Tasmania, Innovation Norway, Visit Flanders, Rotterdam Partners and departments of industry, conservation and tourism in New Zealand. Anna has been a recipient of The Visionary of the Year Award from the Canadian tourism industry and identified as a finalist in Newsweek’s annual Tourism Visionary Awards. Learn more about Anna here.
Congratulations to our two other finalists, astronaut Wally Funk and Diane Edwards. At age 82, Funk became the oldest woman to go to space on July 20, 2021, flying aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft during its suborbital flight. Edwards is owner of Seascape Sailing, and is known by those who sail in her Aegean realm as “The Goddess Diana.
Photos from the Event
Carolyn and Beth Santos from Wanderful
With Bessie Awards host Jessica van Dop DeJesus, from The Dining Traveler.
Accepting the Award on behalf of Anna Pollock
2021 JourneyWoman Award winner Alessandra Alonso
On April 23, 2021, Alessandra Alonso became the first recipient of the JourneyWoman Award. Alessandra is the founder of Women in Travel CIC, a social enterprise that seeks to “empower women using travel and tourism as a force for good.” Fluent in five languages, she has an impressive professional background, including degrees from the London School of Economics, the Ecole des Ponts Business School in Paris and the University of Florence. Prior to this, she spent over 20 years in consulting, where she operated a business that focused on gender diversity long before it was mainstream. You can read more about Alessandra here.
About the Bessie Awards
The Bessie Awards are part of Wanderful’s Women in Travel Summit (WITS), which is now in its 8th year. JourneyWoman Founder Evelyn Hannon was a keynote speaker at the first WITS in 2014, where she shared her story of starting JourneyWoman after a divorce, travelling solo and spent her entire trip sitting on park benches, desolate and lonely. In addition to her many industry awards, Evelyn’s iconic red boots were recently accepted by Canada’s Bata Shoe Museum as a symbol of female empowerment , encouraging women to take the first step into solo travel.
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