The Wave Awards judging panel is made up of distinguished experts and industry representatives together with our magazine editors. The judging process is in two stages and involves independent scoring followed by round table discussions.
Our Passenger Favourite Awards are the only categories not judged by the panel but instead are voted for by members of the public throughout the year. All other categories are independently reviewed by our judging panel.
Co-Chair of Judges, Editor, Cruise Trade News
Colette Doyle is an award-winning magazine editor who has worked on publications in both London and the Gulf in a career spanning almost three decades. Her background as a linguist has led her to be involved with titles that have an international focus.
Starting out in the 1990s covering the pharmaceutical sector, Colette moved into business travel nearly 20 years ago when she was employed at the UK’s largest privately owned publishing house, Haymarket.
She was based in Dubai for six years, during which time she helmed Business Traveller Middle East, the regional edition of the renowned London franchise, as well as being responsible for relaunching Dubai Voyager, the customer publication for leading airport retailer Dubai Duty Free.
Immediately prior to joining Real Response Media, Colette worked at Metropolis International where she headed up the travel retail channel’s longest-established title and was later appointed as managing editor across both Frontier and sister title Duty-Free News International.
Co-Chair of Judges, Editor, World of Cruising
Vicky Mayer has worked on many magazines throughout her career including TV Times, Now, Woman’s Own, Inside Soap, Reveal and now World of Cruising.
When she’s not busy putting the magazine together you will find her travelling, deep with her head in a book or catching up with friends over a cocktail.
Managing Director, Shearings Holidays
Jane has worked in travel for over 30 years and has built up a rounded understanding of tour operating, multiple retail agencies plus the independent and homeworking environments.
After starting her career as a travel agent, Jane quickly moved into tour operating spending 10 years at Rainbow Holidays where she joined as Sales Executive in 1986 and left as Sales Director in 1996.
After joining Airtours as general sales manager, Jane took on the duel role of Sales and Commercial Director for Airtours/Going Places, fully developing her understanding of the multiple retail sector.
In 2006, Jane was recruited as Managing Director of Coop travel’s Freedom Travel Group & Future Travel who specialised in the independent travel agent and homeworking sectors – a completely different and varied sector of the retailing marketplace.
Moving back to tour operating, Jane moved to Super Break in December 2011 as Sales Director and was later promoted to Sales and Product Director.
In May 2017, Jane moved to Shearings Holidays as Managing Director.
Jane was recognised in the AWTE’s inaugural 60 for 60 most influential women in travel in 2014 and is passionate about developing talent in the travel employment sector.
Vice President, International Sales & Marketing, Crystal Cruises
Beck has worked within the travel industry for over 35 years and currently oversees the International marketing and sales activities for the Ocean, River, Yacht and Expedition Cruises at Crystal Cruises.
Having grown up in the hospitality industry, she continued into the travel industry working with various companies including tour operators, an incentive house, a hotel group and most recently cruise companies. All of which have grown her knowledge and experience across the industry. During her career, she has also worked across many International markets developing a strong commercial understanding of each country.
Beck is proficient in Spanish, French and German with conversational Italian.
Tips for Travellers
Gary Bembridge set up and creates content for his Tips For Travellers channels to help people make the most of their precious travel time and money at sea, on rivers and on land. His main focus is video, and his YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/tipsfortravellers) has over 90,000 subscribers and between 950,000 and one million video views a month.
Senior Commercial Manager, Advantage Travel Partnership
Claire is the Senior Commercial Manager at the Advantage Travel Partnership, the UK’s largest independent travel agent group.
Claire is happy to admit to being a travel addict in every sense but particularly for cruise. She regularly cruises both for work and for pleasure and loves that every brand, ship and port of call offers guests something different.
Claire says she is lucky enough to have some amazing experiences whilst cruising but one that sticks in her mind would definitely be sailing into Puerto Rico with a glass of champagne on the helipad of a cruise ship.
Senior Vice President & Managing Director, EMEA, Oceania Cruises
Bernard Carter is Senior Vice-President & Managing Director, EMEA for Oceania Cruises. With over 25 years’ experience in cruise, Bernard has a recognised history for establishing brands and products in the EMEA region. Furthermore, he has witnessed the development of the cruise industry itself at first hand, having worked for a number of well-known brands, including Silversea Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and the much vaunted World of ResidenSea, before joining market-leader Oceania Cruises in 2005. Much like Oceania’s discerning guests, Bernard has a passion for exquisite cuisine and exploration, believing life is there to be lived and that shared experiences are the ingredients for long-lasting memories.
President of Barrhead Travel Group
Jacqueline Dobson is the President of Barrhead Travel, one of the UK’s largest travel agencies. With over two decades of experience within the travel industry, Jacqueline has been pivotal in shaping Barrhead Travel into a UK-wide success story.
Thanks to her proven track-record, ambition and innovative strategic decisions, Jacqueline’s story of success is well-known and admired amongst industry peers and senior business executives. Her grass-roots development from where she began to where she is now – as trainee to President of a business in excess of £300m – is echoed in her passion for mentorship. She leads and inspires a new generation of future business leaders through a dedicated coaching and one-to-one mentoring programme.
Managing Director, WTH UK
Alison Earnshaw is Managing Director of WTH UK, which trades under three specialist cruise retail brands and is one of the largest and fastest growing cruise specialists in the UK, and part of WTH Inc, the World’s largest cruise retailer.
Alison has over 20 years’ experience in the travel industry in roles including business development, high street retail management and commercial contract negotiation; holding management roles at Thomas Cook and MyTravel before moving into the cruise sector in 2004.
Part of the senior team which launched Cruise118 in 2008, Six Star Cruises in 2009 and River Voyages in 2011, Alison was previously Product and Commercial Director, before being promoted to Managing Director of WTH UK in March 2018.
Travel and Lifestyle Writer/Photographer
From restaurant reviewer for Asia Life in Cambodia, to trainee gaucho on a farm in Argentina, food, travel and lifestyle writer/photographer Heidi Fuller-Love travels widely, and regularly contributes features, and photos to 68+ publications around the globe. She also travels the world reporting live from different destinations for her award-winning Meet The Locals travel podcast for British Airways in flight radio and she contributes to the BBC’s iconic From Our Own Correspondent. An ardent fan of life on board she has cruised in countless regions ranging from the Galapagos Islands, to Africa and Kerala. She contributes regularly to the the UK’s World of Cruising, Cruise Trade News and Cruise Destinations.
CEO, Cosmos & Avalon Waterways
Giles has over 25 years’ experience in the UK tour operation and cruise sectors of the travel industry. He is UK CEO of Cosmos and Avalon cruises, the experts in escorted tours, combined tour and rail journeys and ocean and river cruises, offering memorable holidays across 80 captivating destinations worldwide and part of the Globus Family of Brands. Giles cites his first role with the UK’s largest ski tour operator as a determining factor in developing his clear focus on putting the customer first in everything he does. An Executive Committee member of the Association of Tourism and Adventure Suppliers (ATAS), having been Chairman in its first year, and a member and past deputy Chair, of the Executive Committee for Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) UK. Giles also runs his own small tour operation, South Downs Way Tours, is on the ABTA Membership Committee and a non-Executive Director of the Institute of Customer Service. In his spare time, he is a keen cyclist, runner and skier and recent convert to triathlons. Giles loves spending time with his family and, when time allows, drinking good quality Burgundy. His favourite travel destinations are: Cornwall, Chamonix, New Zealand and the Rockies.
Director of Sales UK & Ireland, Holland America Line & Seabourn
Wendy’s career spans most sectors of the travel industry including retail, tour operating and of course cruising.
After starting her career at AT Mays in 1985, Wendy then worked as a travel consultant for Thomas Cook before joining North America specialist Unijet as a Sales Executive “on the road” with responsibility for the North and Scotland. Wendy’s first introduction to cruising was in selling the company’s “cruise & stay” programme with Carnival Cruise Lines.
Following a spell at CTC Cruise Lines as Sales Manager North & Scotland, Wendy moved south to join one of the UK’s largest cruising general sales agents, and, when the business was purchased by Carnival Corporation in 1999, Wendy was employed firstly as Sales Manager South, then promoted to Sales & Marketing Manager, then again promoted to Head of Sales & Marketing for Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America Line, based within the registered Carnival Corp. UK office in London.
In November 2011, Wendy was appointed as Director of Sales for Seabourn and Holland America Line, based at the company’s new joint office, at Carnival House in Southampton, alongside sister Carnival UK brands.
Until very recently, Wendy was an active member of the CLIA Trade Sales Engagement Committee, working closely with other cruise lines on projects and promotions to help travel agents learn about and sell cruise. She continues to liaise regularly with other Carnival-owned brands on shared practice.
Managing Director, Mundy Cruising
A true ‘early adopter’, Edwina boasts a lifetime’s work in the cruise industry, stretching back to the early years at Fred.Olsen where she started work as a fresh-faced graduate in 1982, looking after a range of long gone cruise lines including Sun Line, American Hawaii and Blue Funnel cruises.
After a brief foray into tour operating at the newly formed Redwing Holidays, she returned to the industry she loves in 1989, working for her long term mentor Paul Mundy as sales manager for Royal Viking Line, and later Renaissance Cruises and Crystal Cruises.
In 1999, she and her husband Matthew purchased Paul and Judith Mundy’s business in a management buyout, and they have continued to focus on the luxury end of the market, in addition to expedition cruising and a few quirky one-offs, through their acclaimed and respected brands Mundy Cruising, The Cruise Portfolio and Mundy Adventures.
Sales Director UK & Ireland, Royal Caribbean International
Martin MacKinnon is Sales Director UK & Ireland for leading family cruise brand Royal Caribbean International and is responsible for implementing the Sales strategy, along with leading the 30-strong sales team. Having held a variety of Sales roles across a breadth of sectors, including senior commercial leadership roles at Diageo and Kimberley Clark, Martin brings a wealth of experience to the cruise line and a fresh perspective for showcasing Royal Caribbean’s products and unparalleled guest experience to current and prospective markets. In his spare time, Martin can be found in the park entertaining his one year old daughter, and trying his best to grab time for a run or a round of golf.
Sales and Marketing Director, Fred. Olsen Cruise Line
Jackie Martin joined Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines as its new Sales and Marketing Director on 24th April 2019.
Based at its Head Office in Ipswich, Suffolk, Jackie has assumed overall responsibility for Fred. Olsen’s UK Sales, Marketing and Public Relations teams.
The role is focussed on enhancing and further developing the Fred. Olsen brand and its relationships with trade partners, ensuring that marketing and PR activity continues to drive sales to travel agents and directly through Fred. Olsen’s own channels.
Jackie’s most recent role before joining Fred. Olsen was with Bourne Leisure, where she was the Sales & Marketing Director at Butlin’s, a role that required both sales-driving and developing business and brand strategy.
Jackie previously held senior positions at NTL (Virgin Media) and CNN (part of Turner Broadcasting).
Jackie currently lives in Bedfordshire with her husband and has two children at university.
General Manager, Star Clippers UK
Since taking on her most recent role as General Manager for Star Clippers UK and Ireland, Fay McCormack has become a popular and respected face within the cruise industry. Following a 25 year career in travel and cruising, she has built up a highly successful team of sales and representation for Star Clippers in the UK during the past ten years. Dedicated and passionate about cruise, Fay loves her work and in particular the interaction with agents and colleagues, as well as the thrill of sailing on board Star Clippers. She brings to the judging panel professionalism, experience and compassion.
Managing Director UK & Europe, APT
APT’s managing director UK and Europe, Paul Melinis, has been with the luxury river cruise and tour operator since May 2018.
Prior to this he was Director of Sales at Insight Vacations, part of The Travel Corporation, where he spent 18 years in senior management roles.
Melinis, who is also the new chairman of the Association of Touring & Adventure Suppliers (ATAS), has worked in the travel industry for over 25 years.
He has played an instrumental role in growing travel brands into award winning, industry-leading operators in the UK.
In his new role he has already made great strides in terms of growing the APT sales team and elevating the brand profile amongst the travel trade.
He is dedicated to growing the APT cruise and touring offerings in tandem and is already an active member at the Cruise Lines Industry Association (Clia).
Managing Director, A-ROSA River Cruises UK & Ireland
Dedicated travel executive, educated at MBA level, with more than 17 years combined experience starting up complex product concepts as well as directing operational areas in large and small travel organizations. The last six years having been spent in the UK and building up a considerable executive consultancy experience, Lucia’s career was built on a passionate approach towards a variety of managerial roles and business sectors: from hands-on river cruise start-ups with A-ROSA River Cruises and DER Touristik to private Yacht concepts (Lurssen Yachts/Beluga Group);
A strategist with solid reputation for driving top revenue numbers while providing quality product, Lucia is a results-driven professional, skilful at building strong and successful international teams by adeptly coordinating people from different backgrounds, nationalities, and positions. Fluent in 4 languages with proficiency in 5th she is very keen to embark onto new travel & tourism projects and contribute to the best of her abilities to the success of the AWTE.
Marketing & PR Director, UK&I and MEA, Norwegian Cruise Line
Karen Sequeira is responsible for the Marketing and PR strategy for premium cruise line ‘Norwegian Cruise Line’ across the UK & Ireland, and Middle East and Africa. Sequeira has over 25 years’ solid marketing and PR experience in both the cruise and hospitality sectors, formerly as Head of Marketing & PR for Azamara Club Cruises, and before that she was Director of Marketing for Europe at Millennium & Copthorne Hotels. She has also previously held management positions at Carnival UK, Hilton International and Hurtigruten; and has lectured in Marketing at the University of Portsmouth. She holds a Master’s degree in Marketing Management.
UK Sales Director, P&O Cruises
Nathaniel Sherborne has been part of the Carnival UK group for 12 years, having started on a graduate scheme following a Law degree at Southampton University. He has held roles across sales, marketing, operations and guest experience for various brands, before spending the last three and half years as Director of Trade Sales for P&O Cruises. When not looking forward to the imminent arrival of Iona in 2020, and then her sister ship in 2022, you’ll find him trying squeeze in a round of golf amongst the fun and games of having 2 children under 2!
Head of International Sales, Carnival Cruise Line
Having started his journey within the cruise industry in the reservations team of Cunard Line nearly 14 years ago, Luke worked in various sales roles for P&O Cruises, Princess Cruises, Cunard and former brand Ocean Village before leaving to join Carnival Cruise Line as Account Manager in November 2012. Following roles as Sales Planning Manager and Senior Partnership Manager, Luke was promoted to Head of International Sales in January 2017 and is tasked with leading the sales efforts in all markets out of North America, Canada and Australia. The next 12 months with Carnival Cruise Line are keeping Luke very busy with the exciting launches of Carnival Panorama and Mardi Gras as well as three ships with European deployment in 2020. Despite this, Luke makes sure to enjoy as much time at home as possible with girlfriend Emilia and son Jackson.
Director of Destinations & Sustainability, ABTA Ltd
As ABTA’s Director of Destinations & Sustainability, Nikki is responsible for destination government liaison, sustainability, operations, crisis management, and health & safety in destinations. Nikki chairs a number of committees, including the Federation of Tour Operators, ABTA’s accessibility committee, and ECTAA’s destinations and sustainability committee. Nikki also sits on the WTM advisory council. Nikki is Vice President of her local Rotary club.
Nikki gained an impressive grasp of travel and tourism strategy over the years, as both a Board Director and Head of Strategy and Development at a travel and leisure marketing strategic communications firm. Here she worked with a number of destinations as well as specialist agents, tour operators, and airlines, devising a range of strategic policies. Nikki’s expertise in sustainable tourism has been enhanced by her Masters degree in Leadership for Sustainable Development.
Managing Director, ROL Cruise
Sarah has been at ROL for 14 years and became Managing Director in May 2018. Sarah is dedicated to growing ROL and continuing to strengthen the long-term partnerships they hold in such high regard. She also now leads the business towards celebrating its 25th Anniversary in March 2020 which can only cement relationships with partners even further as well as increase customer confidence in the brand.
ROL can boast having achieved 17 Awards as Finalist and Winner in the last year alone, including winning the Bronze Award for ‘Best Cruise Holiday Retailer’ at the British Travel Awards and winning ‘Website of the Year’ at the Agent Achievement Awards, followed by winning the ‘Best Advertising, PR or Marketing Campaign’ for ROL’s Cruise Miles Loyalty Programme at the Wave Awards in January 2019.
In her personal life, Sarah’s time is very much taken up with two young and energetic children, who she has recently introduced to cruising with their very first ship visit at the ages of 6 and 3 – which certainly may help to bring down the average age of cruising!
Director of Sales UK & Ireland, MSC Cruises
Steve Williams began his career with Lunn Poly as a YTS back in 1988 in Alton Hampshire joining on the day the store opened, he went on to spend a further 15 years working his way up to a managerial position in retail travel working for brands such as Thomas Cook, Travelbag & Hogg Robinson. In 2001 he made the decision to move into account management and went on the road for Unijet & Suncars part of the First Choice group. In 2005 Steve made his first move into cruise taking a Key Account Managers role for Royal Caribbean looking after their 3 brands before moving on to become their Head of Sales for Royal Caribbean where he spent 11 years. In 2016 he joined MSC Cruises in the newly created role of Director of Sales UK & Ireland. At a period of exceptional growth he immediately restructured and expanded the sales team to their current team of 18, he has delivered exceptional distribution & growth for the cruise line since joining and one of his biggest passions is working hand in hand with UK & Ireland travel trade to develop their cruise business and to showcase the benefits of selling MSC Cruises.
Freelance Travel Writer
A former newspaper journalist and editor turned full-time award-winning travel writer with a taste for adventure, Jeannine lives next to the sea and is never far away from her love of water.
From paddling down the Mississippi in a dugout wooden canoe to sailing on some of the world’s most luxurious ships, she has clocked up thousands of nautical miles in both familiar and far-flung destinations including the remote Chindwin River in Myanmar and isolated Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia. Known as World of Cruising’s ‘river cruise queen’, Jeannine writes for Real Response Media titles and various newspapers, magazines and websites in the UK and overseas.
When she is not on water she can be found indulging in her passions for horse riding, running, reading and watching films over a glass of wine or two.
John has been a journalist since he left school 38 years ago.
For the past eight years he has specialised in travel and especially cruising. He has written for national newspapers and magazines and has also managed a large number of sponsored editorial projects for cruise lines and retailers.
John has sailed on cruise ships on oceans and rivers, from 40 passengers to 3,000.
CEO, Accord Marketing
After enjoying a long and successful career at DMGT, in 2013 Sally was appointed CEO of Accord Marketing.
A highly energetic, enthusiastic and focused operator, with a proven track record in commercial and people development, she has played an instrumental role positioning Accord as the leading travel marketing agency in the UK.
Working with start-ups, challenger brands and market leaders, Accord is proud to work with a wide range of cruise lines and cruise agents – devising, designing and delivering award-winning campaigns that increase brand awareness, drive audience engagement and secure sales.