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WASHINGTON (March 24, 2016)—National Geographic is a leading global brand on social media with a combined fan base of more than 250 million across all platforms. In response to its success and growing business, National Geographic Partners is expanding its Digital team by announcing six key appointments, including a new Executive Editor overseeing Digital content and new editors for Digital News and Photography.

“I’m delighted to have the opportunity to promote and hire these talented leaders in digital journalism who all share National Geographic’s passion for storytelling,” said Susan Goldberg, Editor-in-Chief, National Geographic magazine and Editorial Director, National Geographic Partners.

Dan Gilgoff has been promoted to Executive Editor for Digital. Dan joined National Geographic in 2013 as Director of Digital News. He was previously religion editor at CNN.com, where he led a team that won the Online Journalism Award for beat reporting. Dan has also worked as the political correspondent for U.S. News & World Report and for Beliefnet, where he won the Online Journalism Award for commentary. He is the author of “The Jesus Machine: How James Dobson, Focus on the Family, and Evangelical America are Winning the Culture War” (St. Martin’s Press, 2007), has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post and USA Today and has appeared on NPR, CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC and C-SPAN.

Patrick Witty joins National Geographic Partners as Deputy Director of Photography for Digital, leading the digital photography team as well as contributing to National Geographic magazine. Patrick was most recently the director of photography at WIRED, where he led photography across all platforms and produced award-winning covers on a variety of subjects from Dr. Dre to Edward Snowden. Prior to joining WIRED, Patrick was the international picture editor at TIME where he edited global visual coverage that won numerous awards and recognition from organizations including the World Press Photo of the Year, Pictures of the Year International, the American Society of Magazine Editors and the Society of Professional Design. Patrick has served on multiple juries and has led workshops in Iraq, Bangladesh and Slovenia for local photographers and editors. Previously, Patrick was the international picture editor at The New York Times and was a member of the foreign staff awarded the Pulitzer Prize in International Reporting in 2009. Patrick began his career as a freelance photographer based in Washington, D.C., and New York. His editorial work has appeared in publications including TIME, The New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair, Stern and GEO. Patrick’s photographs from 9/11 were widely published and are part of the permanent collection at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. Born in Kentucky, Patrick has a degree in Photojournalism from Western Kentucky University.

Laura Helmuth joins National Geographic Partners as Director of Digital News. Laura was an award-winning writer and science and health editor at Slate since 2012 and had led the legal beat there for the last two years. She previously worked as science editor for Smithsonian magazine and as a writer and editor for Science magazine and its news site. Laura has a Ph.D. in cognitive neuroscience from the University of California at Berkeley and is the incoming president of the National Association of Science Writers.

Michael Tribble joins National Geographic Partners as Director of Design overseeing design of National Geographic magazine content across all platforms, including the iPad and NationalGeographic.com. Most recently, Michael had been the director of product innovation at Advance Ohio, the digital media parent of The Plain Dealer. Prior to that, Michael had been the assistant managing editor for digital as well as design and graphics director at The Plain Dealer. He was previously the design director for the San Jose Mercury News.

Kevin DiCesare has been promoted to Senior User Experience Designer. In his new role, Kevin will help lead the effort to create a unified user experience for National Geographic Partners, focusing on creating a global style guide and enhancing the AEM publishing platform. Kevin joined National Geographic as a digital designer in 2012 and has contributed to the evolution of mobile-first storytelling in National Geographic’s apps and on NationalGeographic.com. Kevin designed many of the magazine’s award-winning multimedia stories including Ivory Trade, The New New York Skyline, Trajan’s Column and The Future of Food series.

Victoria Jaggard joins National Geographic Partners as Online Science Editor. Since 2014, Victoria had been the science editor at Smithsonian.com, where she expanded coverage of astronomy, launched widely read series about the Earth’s inner workings and the modern geologic time known as the Anthropocene, and produced an award-winning feature on breast cancer research. She was previously an editor at New Scientist magazine and a writer and editor for NationalGeographic.com from 2005 to 2012.

National Geographic is No. 1 in the magazine industry for total fans and engagement across major social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram and it is the most followed non-celebrity brand on Instagram. Coined the “king of magazines in social media ranking” by the New York Post, National Geographic is the recipient of numerous digital awards. Recent highlights are 18 awards from the 73rd Annual Pictures of the Year International Competition, including First Place in Online Feature Story Editing for Quest for a Superbee, Third Place in Online Feature Story Editing for Homo Naledi and Second Place in Online News and Issue Story Editing for Taking Back Detroit, and multiple wins from the Malofiej International Infographics Awards including the Bronze in Features–Online Graphics.

About National Geographic Partners LLC

National Geographic Partners LLC, a joint venture between National Geographic Society and 21st Century Fox, combines National Geographic television channels with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic Studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, catalog, licensing and e-commerce businesses. A portion of the proceeds from National Geographic Partners LLC will be used to fund science, exploration, conservation and education through significant ongoing contributions to the work of the National Geographic Society.

For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com and find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

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WASHINGTON (March 23, 2016) — “The Greeks—Agamemnon to Alexander the Great” spans 5,000 years of Greek history and culture, presenting stories of individuals from Neolithic villages through the conquests of Alexander the Great. This unprecedented exhibition features more than 550 artifacts from the national collections of 22 museums throughout Greece, making it the largest exhibition of its kind to tour North America in 25 years. The Greeks makes its final of two U.S. stops, and its only East Coast appearance, at the National Geographic Museum, where it opens to the public on June 1.

“The Greeks is the largest and most comprehensive exhibition of Greek history and culture to visit North America in a generation,” said Kathryn Keane, vice president of Exhibitions at the National Geographic Society. “From their Bronze Age beginnings to the height of classical civilization, the Greeks and the traditions they founded continue to have a profound impact on our lives today.”

The exhibition contains more than 500 magnificent artifacts, many of which have never been displayed outside of Greece. Curator favorites include iconic stone figurines from the Cycladic Islands; gold funerary masks and other treasures from Mycenae; classical marble statues from the Acropolis Museum of Greek poets, athletes and heroes; and brightly painted ceramic vases featuring scenes from Greek mythology and daily life.

Museum visitors will experience the exhibition through the eyes of the ancient Greeks. Some are well-known even today — Odysseus, Homer, Agamemnon, Leonidas, Socrates, Pericles, Philip II and Alexander — with their achievements recorded in epic poems, historical writings and mythological stories. But many of the people featured in the exhibition remain unnamed and known to us only through the archaeological record: a priestess of Mycenae, a warrior of the Iron Age, two noble women of the Archaic period and an athlete of the classical era. The objects buried with these individuals provide insights into their lives and the roles they played within their respective families and societies.

Woven throughout the exhibition are the inventions, innovations and institutions that provide the foundation for much of Western culture. Scholars today trace the origins of modern democracy; the Olympic movement; and Western philosophy, poetry and theater back to Greece. Even many of the monuments of Washington, D.C., owe their architectural style to the mathematicians, builders and sculptors of ancient Greece.

The Greeks was developed by the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports (Athens, Greece), The National Geographic Museum (Washington, D.C.), the Field Museum (Chicago), the Canadian Museum of History (Gatineau, Canada), and Pointe-à-Callière Montréal Archeology and History Complex (Montréal, Canada). More information about The Greeks at the National Geographic Museum can be found here: http://natgeo.org/thegreeks.

In addition to this exhibition, National Geographic is producing a three-hour series “The Greeks,” which will air nationally on PBS in late June. A rich complement of publications and public programming related to the exhibition will also be announced in early May. Special events will include an engaging Nat Geo Live event featuring Caroline Alexander, author of the recently published and critically acclaimed English translation of “The Iliad.”

The National Geographic Museum, 1145 17th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C., is open every day (except Dec. 25) from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults; $12 for National Geographic members, military, students, seniors and groups of 25 or more; $10 for children ages 5-12; and free for local school, student and youth groups (18 and under; advance reservation required). Tickets may be purchased online at http://natgeo.org/thegreeks; via telephone at (202) 857-7700; or in person at the National Geographic Museum, 1145 17th Street, N.W., between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. For more information on group sales, call (202) 857-7281.

 

About the National Geographic Society

The National Geographic Society is a global nonprofit membership organization driven by a passionate belief in the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to change the world. We fund hundreds of research and conservation projects around the globe each year. With the support of our members and donors, we work to inspire, illuminate and teach through scientific expeditions, award-winning journalism, education initiatives and more. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.org.

 

MEDIA NOTE

Images, usage requirements and other assets available via this link: bit.ly/ng_greeks_exhibit

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WASHINGTON (March 21, 2016)—The government of Ecuador today announced the creation of a more than 15,000-square-mile (40,000-square-kilometer) marine sanctuary around two of the northern Galápagos islands, Darwin and Wolf. In addition, several smaller no-take areas have been created throughout the volcanic archipelago in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of South America. This move fully protects roughly one-third of the waters around the Galápagos from fishing and other extractive industries. An Ecuadorian province, the Galápagos Islands are home to the world’s largest biomass of sharks and are a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The National Geographic Society conducted a Pristine Seas expedition in the Galápagos Marine Reserve in December 2015. Led by National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala, the Pristine Seas team of international scientists and filmmakers, in collaboration with the Galápagos National Park and the Charles Darwin Research Station, surveyed and documented the waters around the islands, with a focus on the deep and offshore environments. The expedition was made possible in part by a grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust.

On February 12, 2016, Sala met with Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa to discuss the important findings from the December expedition and the need for stronger conservation measures. Upon creation of the sanctuary, President Correa said, “The Galápagos Islands have extraordinary ecological value and also economic value. The government of Ecuador supports the creation of a marine sanctuary to leave an inheritance to our children and our children’s children; a wonderful world where as many species as possible are preserved for the enjoyment and knowledge of future generations.”

Ninety-seven percent of the Galápagos Islands’ landmass is currently protected as a national park. Prior to today’s announcement, however, less than 1 percent of the marine reserve surrounding the islands was fully protected from fishing. As a result, the number of sharks, groupers and sea cucumbers in the area has declined over time. The new marine sanctuary will protect the largest biomass of sharks in the ocean, most notably migratory hammerheads and reef sharks.

“I have spent numerous hours underwater in Galápagos; there’s nothing quite like it in the world,” said Sala. “The extraordinary abundance of large animals, including species found nowhere else on Earth, make this marine ecosystem one of our most valuable and irreplaceable natural assets.”

According to Pelayo Salinas de Leon, senior marine scientist with the Charles Darwin Foundation: “The first time I dove in the waters around Darwin and Wolf islands, I could not believe how many sharks were there. This area is truly a jewel in the crown of the Galápagos Islands World Heritage site.”

Currently, marine-based tourism supports more than one-third of all jobs in the Galápagos Islands, bringing nearly US$178 million per year to the local economy. A recent economic study by the National Geographic Society and the University of California Santa Barbara calculated that the tourism value of a shark over its lifetime in the Galápagos is US$5.4 million, while a dead shark brings fishermen less than US$200.

“By creating this sanctuary, Ecuador has saved one of the planet’s most precious natural treasures while preserving an important economic engine for the country,” said Sala.

A hotspot of biodiversity on land and at sea, the Galápagos Islands harbor more than 2,900 known species of fish, invertebrates and marine mammals in addition to endemic seabirds and the world’s only marine iguana. Of these species, 57 are on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species. The unique wildlife on the islands evolved in isolation from mainland South America, inspiring Charles Darwin to develop his theory of evolution through natural selection after his 1835 visit.

About the National Geographic Society

The National Geographic Society is a global nonprofit organization driven by a passionate belief in the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to change the world. The Society funds hundreds of research and conservation projects around the globe each year and works to inspire, illuminate and teach through scientific expeditions, award-winning journalism and education initiatives. The National Geographic Society’s Pristine Seas project seeks to help protect the last wild places in the ocean. The project’s partners include Blancpain and Davidoff Cool Water, among others. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.org.

NOTE: For photos and video related to the National Geographic Society/Galápagos announcement, visit http://bit.ly/_pristine_seas_galapagos.

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WASHINGTON (March 8, 2016)—In a new book from National Geographic, celebrated astronaut and best-selling author Buzz Aldrin reflects on a lifetime of adventures and achievements and what he has learned through it all. In NO DREAM IS TOO HIGH: Life Lessons from a Man Who Walked on the Moon (National Geographic Books; ISBN 978-1-4262-1649-7; on sale April 5, 2016; $22.00; hardcover), Aldrin shares little-known stories with New York Times best-selling author Ken Abraham and highlights 13 principles that have shaped and guided his eventful life.

Aldrin’s principles range from “laugh…a lot” to “write your own epitaph” and, while he speaks intimately and from the heart, his disarming candor permeates each lesson. “Once you’ve been first, it cannot be done again — not by you, not by anyone else,” he writes — and muses in his irreverent way about how it has felt to be known as the second man on the moon.

In an interview, Aldrin can discuss never-before-told stories, including:

How he used persistence to hitch a ride on Air Force One with President Barack Obama and visit the White House for the 45th anniversary of Apollo 11.
His thoughts on the letter President Richard Nixon would have read if Apollo 11 had been unsuccessful and didn’t return from the moon.
His wild ride on a whale shark while on a scuba diving trip in the Galapagos Islands for his 80th birthday.

How he battled recurring bouts of depression and alcoholism.
How he took the first selfie in space during the Gemini 12 mission in 1966.
His time as a fighter pilot in Korea and his friendship with U.S. Rep. Sam Johnson, who was his wingman.

NO DREAM IS TOO HIGH provides a window into Aldrin’s extraordinary. “Always keep some exciting new adventure on your bucket list,” Aldrin writes. “I’m living proof that no dream is too high!”

About the Authors

Buzz Aldrin, best known for his Apollo 11 moonwalk, holds a doctoral degree in astronautics and, at age 86, continues to wield influence as an international advocate of space science and planetary exploration. He has written three nonfiction books, two science fact/fiction novels and two children’s books.

Ken Abraham is best known for his collaborations with celebrities and high-profile public figures including John Ashcroft, Bob Dole, Chuck Norris and George Foreman. Fourteen of those titles have appeared on the New York Times bestseller list. He coauthored Buzz Aldrin’s memoir “Magnificent Desolation.”

About National Geographic Partners LLC

National Geographic Partners LLC, a joint venture between National Geographic Society and 21st Century Fox, combines National Geographic television channels with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic Studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, catalog, licensing and e-commerce businesses. A portion of the proceeds from National Geographic Partners LLC will be used to fund science, exploration, conservation and education through significant ongoing contributions to the work of the National Geographic Society. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com and find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

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WASHINGTON (March 9, 2016)—The five winners of the 2016 National Geographic World Legacy Awards were announced today during an awards ceremony held at ITB Berlin at the ITB Berlin Convention. A partnership between National Geographic Partners and ITB Berlin, the World Legacy Awards showcase the leading travel and tourism companies, organizations and destinations — ranging from large resorts to small eco-lodges and from wildlife conservancies to global geoparks — that are driving the sustainable tourism transformation of the travel industry based on National Geographic’s work of inspiring people to care about the planet.

More than 100 entries, representing 51 countries across six continents, were received. An international panel of 23 judges coordinated by Costas Christ, editor-at-large for National Geographic Traveler magazine and chairman of the World Legacy Awards, scored each entry according to globally recognized sustainable tourism criteria. The 15 finalists underwent a rigorous on-site inspection.

Christ said, “There are now more than one billion international travelers, up from 25 million in 1950, and we have more ways to reach more places on our planet than ever before. The goal of the World Legacy Awards is a simple one: Applaud, support and raise the bar for destinations and travel companies in the vanguard of sustainable tourism as a force to help alleviate poverty and safeguard the world’s natural and cultural treasures.”

George Stone, National Geographic Travel editor-in-chief, said, “From community engagement in Zambia to environmental stewardship in Mexico to cultural education in New Zealand, these winners demonstrate that well-managed tourism practices can produce tangible, beneficial, sustainable impacts around the world. The ripple effects of the travel economy can be felt across the globe, not always in good ways. These World Legacy Awards winners show how best practices in tourism today can help sustain the world’s best destinations for generations of travelers to come.”

The 2016 National Geographic World Legacy Awards winners and finalists are:

Earth Changers — Recognizing cutting-edge leadership in environmentally friendly business practices and green technology, from renewable energy and water conservation to zero-waste systems and carbon-emission reduction.

WINNER:

Mission Hills, China — Mission Hills is a leader in advancing sustainable tourism and green operations, including establishing a high-tech field station for monitoring air quality and climate change impacts. It was among the first resort companies in China to ban shark fin, while also helping to educate Chinese travelers and the Chinese tourism industry on sustainable best practices. Incorporating solar-powered golf carts, hand-weeding and solar “pest control,” Mission Hills Haikou also earned Golf Environment Organization’s certification in 2014.

Sense of Place — Recognizing excellence in enhancing sense of place and authenticity, including support for the protection of historical monuments, archaeological sites, cultural events, indigenous heritage and artistic traditions.

WINNER:

TIME Unlimited Tours, New Zealand — TIME (To Integrate Maori Experiences) Unlimited Tours is an Auckland-based ecotourism company offering environmentally friendly tours across New Zealand. A Maori-owned company, TIME Unlimited introduces guests to both the natural and cultural heritage of New Zealand, providing a “living cultural” experience that immerses guests into the local Maori way of life, benefiting local communities while promoting sustainable tourism.

Conserving the Natural World — Recognizing outstanding support for the preservation of nature, restoring natural habitat and protecting rare and endangered species, whether on land or in the oceans.

WINNER:

Grupo Ecológico Sierra Gorda, Mexico — This nonprofit grassroots community organization has been instrumental in the creation and maintenance of the Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve, an area of rich biodiversity in central Mexico. Working with local communities, Sierra Gorda has provided new opportunities for employment, encouraging and supporting the development of small ecotourism businesses, while monitoring and tracking benefits to biodiversity conservation and economic development.

Engaging Communities — Recognizing direct and tangible economic and social benefits that improve local livelihoods, including training and capacity building, fair wages and benefits, community development, health care and education.

WINNER:

The Bushcamp Company, Zambia — As a guiding principle, The Bushcamp Company recognizes that protecting the natural environment means fully involving the local community in management and decision making. Through close collaboration, Bushcamp supports projects in the Luangwa area to help conserve critical wildlife resources and support education, health care and other community development initiatives through the “Luangwa Conservation and Community Fund.”

Destination Leadership — Recognizing destination leadership, including cities, provinces, states, countries and regions that are demonstrating environmental best practices, protection of cultural and natural heritage, benefits to local communities and educating travelers on the principles of sustainability.

WINNER:

Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark, Ireland — From the seeds of a local community project, Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark today represents a vibrant and successful destination-wide partnership between the private sector, local villagers and municipal authorities working together to safeguard one of Ireland’s most beautiful natural landscapes. The project demonstrates the power of well-planned and managed tourism to improve local livelihoods, provide a high-quality visitor experience and promote conservation.

The sponsors of the World Legacy Awards are Botswana Tourism Organization, Adventure World and TreadRight Foundation. For more information on the World Legacy Awards, including the full list of 2016 finalists and interviews, go to www.nationalgeographic.com/worldlegacyawards/.

About National Geographic Partners LLC

National Geographic Partners LLC, a joint venture between National Geographic Society and 21st Century Fox, combines National Geographic television channels with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic Studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, catalog, licensing and e-commerce businesses. A portion of the proceeds from National Geographic Partners LLC will be used to fund science, exploration, conservation and education through significant ongoing contributions to the work of the National Geographic Society. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com and find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

About ITB Berlin and the ITB Berlin Convention

ITB Berlin 2016 takes place from Wednesday, March 9, to Sunday, March 13. From Wednesday to Friday ITB Berlin is open to trade visitors only. Parallel with the show, the ITB Berlin Convention, the largest event of its kind, will be held from Wednesday, March 9, to Saturday, March 12. More details are available at www.itb-convention.com. Information on Corporate Social Responsibility at ITB Berlin can be found at www.itb-berlin.com/csr. ITB Berlin is the global travel industry’s leading trade show. In 2016 a total of 10,000 companies and organizations from 187 countries showcase their products and services in the 26 halls on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds. Overall, about 175,000 visitors are expected to attend the show, among them 115,000 trade visitors.

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