A National Geographic expert will accompany each departure to share insights and a rare behind-the-scenes perspective. Listed below are some of the experts and the departure date(s) they will be joining.
Journalist and author Fen Montaigne's work has appeared in National Geographic, The New Yorker, Outside, Smithsonian, and the Wall Street Journal Hie acclaimed book Fraser’s Penguins: A Journey to the Future in Antarctica recounts five months on the Antarctic Peninsula working with ecologist Bill Fraser, who has long studied the impact of rapid warming on the region and its Adélie penguins. A former Moscow bureau chief of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Montaigne is also the author of Reeling in Russia, and he has co-authored two other books. For his work on Fraser’s Penguins, he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2006. He is now senior editor of the online magazine Yale Environment 360.
Photographer Karen Kasmauski has produced 25 stories for National Geographic magazine on topics ranging from earthquakes in Japan to oil exploration in Alaska. She finds the personal stories behind the headlines, blending a warm human sensitivity with a photographer’s eye for detail to distill global issues into resonant images. Karen's book Impact: From the Front Lines of Global Health, published by National Geographic, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Her new book Nurse: A World of Care tells stories of dedicated medical professionals—“frontline soldiers” in the war against suffering and disease—from the frozen rivers of Alaska to the slums of Nairobi. The book earned awards from Communication Arts, Pictures of the Year, and the American Academy of Nursing. Her photographic work has appeared in numerous publications including Smithsonian and the New York Times. Karen was awarded the inaugural Getty Images Grant for Good, and she recently received a Knight Foundation Fellowship with which she earned a Masters in Visual Communication at Ohio University.
National Geographic photographer Michael Melford has produced more than a dozen feature stories for National Geographic magazine and more than 30 for National Geographic Traveler, including eight covers. On assignment for National Geographic for the past ten years, Michael has often used photography to bring attention to the planet's wonders and the need to preserve them. He shot the cover story, "Places We Must Save," for the October 2006 issue of National Geographic magazine, as well as a cover story on threats to America's national parks. Michael enjoys giving seminars and workshops on photography and sharing his love of nature and his extensive knowledge of the digital medium.
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edward Larson explored Antarctica extensively for his latest book, An Empire of Ice: Scott, Shackleton, and the Heroic Age of Antarctic Science. He has held the Fulbright Program's John Adams Chair in American Studies and participated in the National Science Foundation's Antarctica Artists and Writers Program. Edward has written nearly a dozen books, including Summer for the Gods, which won a Pulitzer Prize in 1998.
Kent Kobersteen joined the National Geographic magazine staff as a picture editor and became Director of Photography and Senior Editor, positions which he held for seven years. He currently conducts photographic workshops and lectures internationally on the philosophy, ethics, and business of photojournalism. Before coming to National Geographic, Kent spent 18 years at the Minneapolis Tribune, where he served for 16 years as a staff photographer and two years as editor of the Tribune’s Sunday magazine. His photographic work has taken him to more than 85 countries. Kent has been a featured expert on National Geographic expeditions on the South Atlantic and Antarctica, as well as on the Society’s Around the World by Private Jet expedition. During Kent's tenure at the National Geographic the magazine was a five-time recipient of the prestigious National Magazine Award for photography.
When Peter Hillary first climbed Mount Everest in 1990, he and his father, Sir Edmund Hillary—who made the first ascent of Mount Everest in 1953—became the first father and son to reach the summit of the world's highest mountain. Among Peter's 40 mountaineering expeditions, he participated in a 2002 National Geographic-sponsored ascent and film on Mount Everest. He is the author of six books on mountaineering and does charitable work to assist the local people of the Mount Everest region in Nepal.
Award-winning travel and editorial photographer Susan Seubert has photographed more than 20 feature stories for National Geographic Traveler since joining the magazine as a contributor in 2004. Her subjects range from Canada to the Caribbean and Texas to Thailand. Her work has been recognized by the department of journalism at Columbia University with an Alfred Eisenstadt Award and most recently by the North American Travel Journalists Association for excellence in photography. In addition to being widely published and exhibited, she also lectures regularly about her work at such institutions as Harvard University and the Portland Art Museum. Based in Portland, Oregon and Maui, Hawaii, Susan travels throughout the world shooting a variety of subjects and specializes in capturing a sense of place through her wide-ranging imagery. Susan's in-depth knowledge of digital technologies and her multimedia skills keep her at the cutting edge of visual storytelling. Born and raised in Indiana, she earned her Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts from the Pacific Northwest College of Art, and she hasn't set down her camera since. When not on assignment, she divides her time between Portland, Oregon and Maui.
National Geographic photographer and naturalist Jeff Mauritzen traveled to Africa, South America, and the Pacific on assignment photographing wildlife for the Society's most recently published Animal Encyclopedia. Jeff is also a seasoned and popular photography expert, guiding and lecturing on natural history-focused trips for National Geographic Expeditions. His adventures have immersed him in vivid landscapes both above and below the water in five continents and more than 50 countries around the world. Whether capturing 360-degree panoramas of wildlife along an African savanna or photographing sharks in the Pacific depths, Jeff’s work expresses an unwavering passion, respect, curiosity, and awe for the natural world. An avid traveler and explorer, Jeff has lived in Venezuela and Ireland, as well as at sea aboard seven different ships. His photography is represented by National Geographic Creative and has appeared in National Geographic books and numerous other publications, as well as on the Society's website.
Photographers Sisse Brimberg and Cotton Coulson have collectively photographed more than 60 stories for National Geographic and National Geographic Traveler magazines. They have spent most of their careers working in Europe, shooting stories from the Arctic and Scandinavia to Italy and France. Both Sisse and Cotton have been awarded numerous prizes by Pictures of the Year International, the National Press Photographers Association, White House Press Photographers Association, and Communication Arts. Today they are based in Glasgow, Scotland, yet spend most of the year on the road producing magazine stories and videos for the Geographic.