career development 

The Career Development Initiative was inspired by the research report commissioned by the GWS "Spa Management Workforce & Education: Addressing Market Gaps." A task force was formed to further the initiative, all in the spirit of the Summit’s tag line, “Joining Together. Shaping the Future.” Members include:


IRENE forte

Brand Manager, Rocco Forte Hotels, United Kingdom

Irene Forte joined Rocco Forte Hotels in 2013 as quality standards executive. Today, whilst still leading learning and development, Irene oversees the wellness proposition across the group, having launched Rocco Forte Spas in January 2016. There are four key pillars that form part of the wellness proposition: Rocco Forte Rituals, Rocco Forte Fitness, Rocco Forte Nourish and Rocco Forte Health. Irene was also awarded government funding in 2015 to create a careers and training app for the hospitality industry. Map My Future launched at Rocco Forte Hotels in August 2016 and is now being pushed out to market.

mia mackman

Spa & Wellness Consultant, United States

Mia Mackman specializes in spa and wellness, strategic planning, forecasting, business development, consulting and coaching. Based in Sedona, Arizona she is a 20+ year Spa and Wellness industry veteran. Consulting since 2001, Mia has predicted some of the leading shifts in the transition of the spa and wellness market since 2004. She works with Fortune 500 Companies, private clients, industry groups and global networks. She is the founder and president of the Arizona Spa & Wellness Association, a World Spa & Wellness Awards official visiting judge for North and South America and a Global Wellness Day U.S.A. Ambassador.

stephanie rest

Wellness and Education Consultant, United States

Stephanie Rest is currently based in Washington D.C working as a consultant, as well as collaborating in the Americas on wellness and education projects.  Stephanie’s previous experience in the hospitality industry is vast. She has led opening teams for resorts and spas around throughout the Americas. Stephanie believes in promoting the entrepreneurial-spirit, leadership and service to the community. She was creator and Chair of the first TCI Hospitality Adventures: Spa Camp.  Currently, she is preparing for Global Wellness Day, where she serves as Global Wellness Day Ambassador for the Caribbean. She has also serves on the International Spa Association Speaker Task Force.

paul schmidt

Executive Director, Green Spa Network, United States

With 30 years of experience in the spa industry, Paul Schmidt brings his passion for healing and the environment to the Green Spa Network as Executive Director.  A non-profit association incorporated in 2006, GSN currently supports over one thousand members businesses and individuals who share a vision that personal and planetary vitality are a singular pursuit and that spas can be powerful catalysts for positive change. 

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Kate Sornson

Spa and Wellness Project Manager, United States

Kate Sornson assists Spa and Wellness Companies as a project manager, bringing their initiatives to fruition. Previously, Kate worked with all three programs of the Career Development Initiative bringing their projects to life, including developing and managing the Mentorship Program for six regions of the world, curating the content for the Careership website, and working with the Internship Committee to conduct an industry wide survey and the following reports on the current state of internships in the spa and wellness industry. Kate has over 10 years of spa industry experience and a Spa Management degree from the University of Houston, Conrad N. Hilton College. 




emmanuel arroyo

Regional Director of Wellness, Rosewood Hotel Group, Mexico
Regional Supervisor, Central & South America

With 12 years of experience in & Luxury Hospitality industry, Emmanuel is a collaborative hands-on leader with excellent training & team building skills who has collaborated with some of the leading Hotel groups bringing a wealth of experience in opening, development & enhancement of Spa operations. His dedication to coaching & mentoring amongst the team has resulted in positive succession planning & evolution of team members to different management positions. During his years with Rosewood he has taken Sense Spa at Rosewood Mayakoba to new heights of service quality & profitability, recognized in 2017 as the first 5 Star Spa in Mexico & Latin America by Forbes Travel Guide and as No.1 Hotel Spa Mexico/Central & South America by Travel + Leisure: World's Best Awards. Under his as role Regional Director of Wellness, Emmanuel has joined forces with Rosewood’s Corporate Leadership to continue strengthening the Spa & Wellness Division across the group.

rekha chaudari

Owner & Managing Director, JCKRC, India
Regional Supervisor, India

Ms.Rekha Chaudhari is an established and well known international figure in Salon, Spa & Wellness industry. She is responsible for introducing many pioneering Spa & Wellness techniques and services to the industry. She is also the Wellness Ambassador for Global Wellness Day. She has worked relentlessly in the area of Skill Development through her vocational education initiatives. Ms. Rekha Chaudhari is the recipient of Female Entrepreneurship awards from many prestigious organizations.

maria haggo

Chief Wellness Operator, Little Miss Wellness & Co-founder, WellnessInc Middle East, United Arab Emirates
Global Community Manager & GMP Ambassador in the UAE

Since graduating from the esteemed Ecole Hoteliere de Lausanne 15 years ago, Maria Haggo has gained a wealth of experience in the spa and wellness industry through a variety of luxury brands across multiple continents. Haggo began her career with the Jumeirah Group and has since held leading roles at the Renaissance Chancery Court, where she headed her team to win numerous awards and accolades and then with the pre-opening project of The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto which was subsequently awarded Best Hotel Spa in the world. This lead to other pre-opening projects such as The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai. Haggo then took on the role of General Manager with Al Barari’s spa and wellness project. She owes much of her success in delivering financial results to her ability to create and redefine the vision through innovative and out-of-the-box concepts and sales & marketing strategies. Haggo is the Global Mentorship Program's Ambassador in the UAE and also the GMP's Global Community Manager.

kate mearns

Principal Consultant, 5 Spa Consulting, LLC, United States
Regional Director USA

Among her many achievements, Kate was ISPA Chairperson (2004-2005), then joined WTS International as Executive Spa Director at the Spa of Colonial Willamsburg, before being appointed Corporate Operations Director, Spa Division for WTS. Kate has extensive experience in the strategic development, integrative management and day to day operations of spa and wellness facilities. Her work has benefited greatly from the insight and expertise of an international network of professional colleagues she calls friends.

STEphanie RESt

CEO & Founder, Caribbean WE, United States
Regional Director CARIBBEAN

Stephanie Rest is currently based in Washington D.C working as a consultant, as well as collaborating around the world on wellness development projects for emerging countries. Stephanie’s previous experience in the tourism industry is vast. She has led opening teams for resorts and spas throughout the world. Stephanie believes in promoting the entrepreneurial-spirit, leadership and service to the community. She was creator and Chair of the first TCI Hospitality Adventures: Spa Camp. Currently, she is preparing for Global Wellness Day held the first week in June annually, where she serves as Global Wellness Day Ambassador for the Caribbean. She is Founder of Caribbean Wellness & Education and also serves on the International Spa Association Speaker Task Force. Recently she has joined the new initiative "Wellness for Children" as Vice-chair, as well has been appointed the Caribbean Regional Director for the "Global Mentorship Program" and serves on the "Global Careership Committee" all initiatives with Global Wellness Institute, (GWI). 

kent richards

Corporate Operations Director, Six Senses Spas (Global), Asia Pacific & China
Regional Supervisor, Australasia 

ENERGY. EXCITEMENT. ENTHUSIASM. These are the values Kent finds essential in all careers. Without passion, Kent believes you cannot be successful in the longterm. The greater the passion the better the guest experience and this is what achieves the ultimate goal – brand loyalty. Sales training and tracking are essential too but passion is the secret ingredient to boost your creativity and achieve each day. Kent has worked across the globe in more than ten countries at leading entrepreneurial brands including bliss spa, W Hotels and Virgin Active gyms. This experience landed Kent with his dream job as Global Operations Director Six Senses Spas. Kent thrives visiting Six Senses teams across the globe motivating them to « add oil » and passion.

Shahida Siddique

Owner & CEO, Spadunya Color Experience, United Arab Emirates
Regional Supervisor, Middle East

Shahida Siddique (MBA, Marketing and Consumer Behavior) is experienced in the commercialization of health related services and products. In 2007, she created Spadunya SARL in Bellegarde, France, producing organic products that are efficacious in the Altearah Bio range. In 2009, she launched SpadunyaClub Dubai, incorporatingthe concept of holistic wellness. She is involved with production, sales, marketing, distribution, management teams and partners worldwide.

emmy stoltz

Wellness Consultant, Spa Fusion, South Africa
Regional Supervisor, Africa

Emmy Stoltz, winner of the Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Visionary Award 2011, has a comprehensive background as a skincare therapist & spa manager for the past 19 years. Emmy has combined her respective skills and experience, including bringing Elemis to South Africa in 2006, to offer innovative mentorship programmes & consultancy to some of the country’s top spas through her company Spa Fusion. She sits on the board of the South African Spa Association and heads the Spa Distribution Division for MatsiMela Home Spa who services over 370 salons and spas and exports to 7 countries.


wendy bosalavage

President, American Leisure, United States
Chair, Global Internship Program

As President of American Leisure, Wendy Bosalavage has redefined the way Americans interact with their communities, unwind and live the 21st century American dream. Wendy works with residential communities and hotels to bring health and wellness centers, programs, and education to residents.  Her Nanuet, NY based firm provides consulting, design, marketing, and operations for lifestyle and recreation facilities, spas and fitness and wellness centers. In addition to her role at American Leisure, Wendy is one of the founders of the Medical Spa Society, the only non-profit organization created to promote the sound development of the medical spa field. 

sallie fraenkel

President, Mind Body Spirit Network, United States

Sallie Fraenkel is the Founder and President of Mind Body Spirit Network, a company that provides that crafts travel experiences with a focus on well-being of the individual and wellness of the planet.  Fraenkel also offers marketing and business development consulting services to clients involved in wellness and travel-related industries.  Fraenkel is the former CMO & COO of SpaFinder Wellness and EVP of the Global Spa and Wellness Summit.  Fraenkel has 30 plus years of experience as a marketer and business development executive in the spa/ wellness and entertainment industries.


Kathryn Gallagher 

Professor, Seneca College, School of Fashion and Esthetics, Canada

Kathryn Gallagher MBA, Kathryn Gallagher has worked in the spa industry for twenty eight years, beginning her career as an Esthetician, which led to management, sales, training and consulting for spa properties, before becoming a full time professor for the two and three year Esthetician and Advanced Spa Therapies program.  Kathryn completed her graduate studies May 2016, at the University of Guelph, specializing in hospitality and tourism.  

nancy griffin

Principal, Contento Marketing, United States

Nancy Griffin is Principal of Contento Marketing, a leading business development and strategic marketing firm for the spa and wellness industry. With more than two decades of spa industry experience, she has delivered presentations at IECSC, ISPA, IHRSA, Luxury Travel Expo and Professional Spa London. She is a founding Advisory Board Member of the University of California Irvine Spa & Hospitality Mgmt. Program, and has a Master’s Degree in Hospitality Management from Cornell University. Griffin’s strong social media presence includes a Twitter following of more than 20,000.

monique iacobacci

Territory Manager and Educator, Greater New York City Area, Image Skincare, United States

With over 23 years of experience in the spa and wellness industry as a licensed Esthetician, Monique's Iacobacci’s career has progressed from advanced esthetics to management and operations, sales, marketing and project and program consulting role. She is the Territory Manager and Educator in the Greater New York City area for Image Skincare, a Pharmaceutical grade skincare line for Physicians, Laser Clinics and Spas.

reneta mccarthy

Senior Lecturer, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, United States

Reneta McCarthy is a Senior Lecturer at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration where she has been teaching in the operations management area since 1995.  She teaches the introductory hotel operations and casino operations courses, and will be teaching the spas and wellness course starting in 2017.  She was the faculty on record for the 80th Hotel Ezra Cornell, a student run industry conference, through The 91st Annual Hotel Ezra Cornell.


anna moine

Principal, ALM, United States

Anna L. Moine has crafted a varied and multi-dimensional expertise in the personal care market within both retail distribution and spa development. Anna’s extensive experience includes brand building, product and retail development, financial planning, sales and distribution strategy, and management oversight. In 2013, she launched a new retail initiative, Almbijoux, to offer fine resorts and spas, a unique collection of semi precious jewelry.

sheila otieno-osanya

Owner, The Spa People and The Spa at Marion on Nicol, Africa 

Sheila studied Hotel Management in Switzerland and once qualified began specializing in hotel operations. Sheila has held numerous spa and wellness management positions, including managing a 90 room 5 star resort in Zanzibar; Deputy General Manager at the Misty Hills Country Hotel & Spa in Johannesburg; and Spa Manager at the Westin Grand Cape Town Arabella Quays. In 2008 Sheila formed The Spa People consultancy and in 2016, opened her spa The Spa at Marion on Nicol in a 5 star boutique hotel in Sandton, Johannesburg.



Veljko Savic, Director of Spa, Hotel Del Coronado, United States 

Veljko has extensive luxury spa experience prior to joining the iconic "Del".  He worked for Four Seasons and The Ritz-Carlton brands and held Spa Advisory Council member position with Marriott International. His therapist background, hands on approach to leadership and passion for spa helped Veljko create unique "Aerial Silk Massage" and "The Night Spa" concept that lead his team to win Asia Spa Crystal award and gain innovative recognition within the industry.


Dr. Mary Wisnom

Spa Management Coordinator and Professor, School of Resort and Hospitality Management at Florida Gulf Coast University, United States

Dr. Mary Wisnom is a Professor and Coordinator of the Spa Management program in the School of Resort and Hospitality Management at Florida Gulf Coast University.  Mary boasts over 25 years of hospitality experience in resorts and clubs in Michigan, Colorado and Florida.  In 1996, she began teaching full time and in 2006 joined the FGCU faculty.