NEW YORK, March 06, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In recognition of International Women’s Day, Seatrade Cruise Global – the cruise industry’s leading annual business-to-business event – is pleased to announce its acclaimed Professional Women in Cruising Brunch will return to the Miami Beach Convention Center on 23 April 2020. Bringing together some of the industry’s most influential female thought leaders, this year’s panel will be dissecting and discussing the framework of disaster recovery including first-response, logistics, sustainability and philanthropy.

Professional Women in Cruising Brunch 2020: Relief, Rebuild, Recover…How the Cruise Industry Reacts to Natural Disasters
Thursday 23 April | 11 AM – 1 PM 
- Sponsored Uplift 

Moderator: Anna Silva, Acting Assistant Director of Operations, Port Everglades Department

•    CAPT JoAnn Burdian, Sector Miami Commander, USCOTP
•    Katherine Forbes-Smith, Managing Director, Bahamas Disaster Recovery Authority
•    Amanda Martin, Director of Communications, Mission Resolve
•    Rick Sasso, Chairman, MSC Cruises USA
•    Lisa Schillig, Director of Port and Terminal Operations, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line

“From women’s leadership, to disaster recovery infrastructure, as well as philanthropic work in welfare and sustainability – our Professional Women in Cruising Brunch shines the spotlight on how the industry is making a meaningful, positive global impact and applauds individuals who are leading these invaluable initiatives,” says Chiara Giorgi, Global Brand and Event Director for Seatrade Cruise.

Hosted in partnership with the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA), the event will benefit Seatrade Cruise Global’s longtime non-profit partner, Mercy Ships, which employs hospital ships to deliver free, world-class healthcare services, capacity building and sustainable development to poverty-stricken communities in the developing world.

“Through the ongoing support of this group of inspiring women, Mercy Ships is able to empower, train and provide resources for other women in the most impoverished nations in the world to achieve their goals and make a lasting impact,” says Russ Holmes, Director of Corporate Development of Mercy Ships. “These contributions open doors for women such as Dr. Odry Agbessi, the first female plastic surgeon in her home country of Benin, who completed a mentorship program with Mercy Ships and now mentors other surgeons throughout Sub-Saharan Africa and often returns to the Africa Mercy as a training volunteer.”

Sustainability and social impact remain at the forefront for Seatrade Cruise Global, with the conference continuously expanding related programming. This year, the Safety & Sustainability Theater returns with the latest on cyber, port and tour security systems, biometrics, monitoring and life-saving technologies. New for 2020, as part of the recently launched Seatrade Cruise Expeditions, the Expedition Cruising & Sustainability conference track will explore industry-wide environmental advancements including sustainability technologies and innovations onboard and onshore. Session topics will include the evolving expedition marketplace, eco-conscious cruising and sustainable tourism.

Other annual philanthropic efforts at Seatrade Cruise Global includes the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) signature fundraising event on 22 April, which gathers FCCA’s key stakeholders to network and forge partnerships with leading cruise line executives. Proceeds from the event fund the FCCA Foundation’s efforts to support humanitarian causes in destinations throughout the Caribbean, Central and South America and Mexico. Since its inception, the Foundation has benefited tens of thousands by contributing to charities, hospitals, disaster relief and annual projects for youth and education in those regions.

Seatrade Cruise Global 2020 will offer a myriad of opportunities for those interested in women’s programming and sustainability – see below:

Safety & Sustainability Theater | Monday 20 April –Tuesday 21 April                                         
The latest on cyber, port and tour security systems, biometrics, monitoring and life-saving technologies.

Designing Women Panel | Wednesday 22 April                                                                                         
Moderator: Catherine Martin, Editor, Starboard Magazine                                                           
  •    Francesca Bucci, President, BG Studio
  •    Anne Mari Gulikstad, CEO, YSA Design 
  •    Paris M Swann, AVP, Architectural Design, Celebrity Cruises, Newbuilding & Innovation Royal Caribbean    Cruises Ltd.

Professional Women in Cruising Brunch | Thursday 23 April                                       
 See details above.

For additional information and a complete schedule of events, reference the 2020 Event Schedule.

Register before 19 April 2020 to save as much as $300! Seatrade Cruise Global offers flexible attendee registration options. For pricing options and to register, CLICK HERE.

To register as a member of the press, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about Seatrade Cruise Global, visit Follow Seatrade Cruise Global on social media: @SeatradeCruise on Twitter and @SeatradeCruiseEvents on Facebook and Instagram. #STCGlobal

About Seatrade Cruise Global
Seatrade Cruise Global 2020 is taking place 20-23 April 2020 at the Miami Beach Convention Center. The exhibition is the leading annual global B2B event for the cruise industry. Bringing together buyers and suppliers for a four-day conference and three-day exhibition, the gathering draws more than 13,000 registered attendees, over 700 exhibiting companies from 140 countries and more than 300 international journalists to become the cruise industry’s epicenter of ideas, products and services. Movers and shakers of the industry participate in a comprehensive panel of discussions featuring experts, leaders and thought makers including the State of the Global Cruise Industry Keynote with the chief executives of the world’s largest cruise companies. Seatrade is organized by Informa Markets, a leading B2B information services group and the largest B2B Events organizer in the world. To learn more and for the latest news and information, visit


FINN Partners
Virginia Sheridan / Luz Castillo

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A video accompanying this announcement is available at