Solo Traveler appreciates the support and work of the judges of the Solo Travel Awards. The contribution of their time and industry knowledge helps move travel companies forward as they serve solo travelers.
Andrew McCarthy is a director, an award-winning travel writer, and of course, an actor. He made his professional début at 19 in Class, and has appeared in dozens of films, including such iconic movies as Pretty in Pink, St. Elmo’s Fire, Less Then Zero, and cult favorites Weekend At Bernie’s and Mannequin. He has starred on Broadway and on television, most recently appearing in The Family, on ABC. McCarthy is also a highly regarded television director; having helmed Orange is the New Black, The Blacklist, Grace and Frankie, and many others.
Simultaneously, McCarthy is an award-winning travel writer. He is an editor-at-large at National Geographic Traveler, and has written for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Atlantic, Travel+Leisure, AFAR, Men’s Journal, Bon Appetit, and many others. He has received six Lowell Thomas awards, and been named Travel Journalist of the Year by The Society of American Travel Writers.
His travel memoir, THE LONGEST WAY HOME, became a New York Times Best Seller, and the Financial Times of London named it one of the Best Books of the year. He served as guest editor for the prestigious Best American Travel series in 2015. His debut novel, JUST FLY AWAY, will be published by Algonquin in the spring of 2017. McCarthy lives in New York City.
Keith Jenkins left his ten-year investment banking career to travel the world and carve out a new career as a travel blogger and social media advocate. He is the Founder and Publisher of the Velvet Escape luxury travel blog and Founder and CEO of iambassador, an Amsterdam based social media and marketing services firm that harnesses the strengths of a global network of elite travel influencers to offer innovative digital marketing campaigns and compelling content.
Keith has visited more than 70 countries across six continents. He often speaks at travel and social media conferences. He is also the co-founder of the Global Bloggers Network, a community of more than 3,000 travel bloggers. Keith has been featured in The New York Times, BBC Travel, Lonely Planet, and National Geographic Traveler, and has spoken at TEDxTalk.
Spud Hilton is the travel editor of The San Francisco Chronicle, where since 2000 he has written about (and been hopelessly lost in) destinations on six continents. His attempts to defy the expectations of places -- from Havana's back alleys to Kyoto's shrines to a hippie bus in Modesto -- have earned 11 Lowell Thomas Awards, the standard for travel journalism. Spud also writes a biweekly column at SFChronicle.com, and his travel tip videos and #CarryOnShame campaign have been featured by Peter Greenberg, Rudy Maxa, “GMA,” “The Today Show” and “Quest Means Business” on CNN International.
Su Höller has traveled solo since she was 21, is an avid member of the Solo Travel Society on Facebook and contributor to Solo Traveler. Her solo travel career started a long time ago mainly by accident. After graduating from tourism college she embarked with a friend on a work-holiday mission to Australia. After completing their working contract, they were supposed to travel to Cairns, where they were based for 4 months, to Sydney and then Melbourne. The night before they were due to leave, her friend cancelled. And so at 21 years young and no travel experience at all she went for the adventure and since then the solo traveler bug never left her. She as climbed over high passes in Ladakh, discovered the beauty of Costa Rica, went on a road trip along the northern tip of Scotland and savored Florence with all her senses. "I often think about why travelling solo makes me so happy. The answer is pretty simple – it is the ultimate freedom."
When not travelling Su works with the Graz Tourist Office and is responsible for Destination & Influencer Marketing of Austria’s second largest city.
Tracey Nesbitt is the Editor of Solo Traveler, the leading solo travel website, and a writer with a passion for discovering destinations through food and wine. An ardent solo traveler, she loves to write about her discoveries (and sometimes, misadventures) as she explores the world. As Moderator of the Solo Travel Society on Facebook, Tracey facilitates the sharing of tips,
advice, and encouragement among the 215,000 community members and has developed a keen understanding of the wants and needs of those who choose to travel alone.
A freelance writer and copyeditor, Tracey edited the Traveler’s Handbooks series published by Full Flight Press. She also works in project management and communications and manages conferences and educational events, including the Social Travel Summit, where the world’s leading online travel influencers and travel industry decision-makers come together.