Australian, Albanian and Mexican Tour Operators Win Scholarships to 2013 Adventure Travel World Summit

28 May 2013

Seattle ─ Representing three different nations but sharing similar strategic goals, the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) and Rome McGuigan P.C. announced Uptuyu Adventures, Zbulo! - Discover Albania and RED Sustainable Travel as winners of the 2013 Adventure Travel World Summit (ATWS) Tour Operator Scholarships. Each winner receives financial backing to attend the ATWS, a trade-only professional and business development conference for adventure tourism leaders.

Uptuyu Adventures // Australia

The winners exemplify early-stage adventure tourism enterprises striving to build sustainable businesses that benefit their local communities and destinations.

Jeff Ment, Principal Attorney from Rome McGuigan said,"We are proud to support these adventure travel tour operators. Each one is making their unique difference in their communities and it is companies like these that will have a lasting impact on our world."

The scholarship winners:

  • Uptuyu Adventures is an award-winning indigenous tour operator in the remote Kimberley region of Australia.

  • Zbulo! - Discover Albania offers guided, self-guided and tailored walking holidays and trekking trips as well as special interest tours in Albania, Montenegro and Kosovo.

  • RED Sustainable Travel is a leader in adventure and conservation focused travel in Northwest Mexico.

When the winners were asked how Summit participation would benefit them they said:

Zbulo! – Discover Albania

"Through participation in the ATTA Summit, we will be able to broaden our ability to achieve our goals by learning from other adventure tour companies how to move forward and find the potential for best positive impact on our local cultural, ecological and historical resources.”
Neville Poelina, Uptuyu Adventures

"With the help of the ATTA's scholarship we can access a pool of knowledge and, in return, also add to it. By gaining insights and learning about approaches other members utilize, we hope to succeed with a new business model."

Ricardo Fahrig, Zbulo! - Discover Albania

RED Sustainable Travel // Mexico

"We will use this opportunity to engage with leaders in the field and identify successful models for conservation and social development which could be replicated or modified for application here in Mexico."

Christopher Pesenti, RED Sustainable Travel

Additional information on the scholarship winners.

Providing young businesses with access to the ATTA’s global network, its membership resources and the October 2013 Summit is the intent behind the ATTA Tour Operator Scholarship Program. This is the second time the ATTA has offered a scholarship program for an ATWS. This year the program was made possible through a sponsorship by Rome McGuigan P.C. and managed by the ATTA.

Each of the scholarship recipients receive:

  • Complimentary membership in the ATTA for one year ($600 USD value)
  • Entry to the 2013 Summit ($1,150 USD value)
  • $1,500 USD travel stipend for travel to the ATWS

“We’re grateful for Rome McGuigan P.C. stepping up to sponsor this vital program that gives incredible opportunities to deserving companies,” said ATTA President Mr. Shannon Stowell. “Not only will these companies benefit but the communities and regions they serve will see value, culturally and economically. From educating youth and training locals in new occupations to environmental and cultural preservation, we look forward to tracking their success.”

Entries were reviewed by ATTA Advisory Board members and staff. The applicants were evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated need (start-up’s, nonprofit status, located in an emerging but impoverished destination, etc.)

  • Potential for positive impact on local cultural, ecological and/or historical resources

  • Exemplary ecological, historical and cultural practices

  • Exemplary efforts to work with local and indigenous peoples

  • Proof of the highest level of professional ethics and practices

  • Ability to prove how the scholarship will be used to elevate the business to achieve a higher level of success – and how it can be utilized sustainably to build long-term and lasting success for the company and the people and places visited

The scholarship will be used by selected incorporated tour operators to grow their business, network, develop their professional skills and be mentored and inspired by industry peers and influencers.

About Rome McGuigan

The law firm of Rome McGuigan, P.C. enjoys an enviable niche among law firms with its Travel and Tourism Department. This group, led by Attorney Jeff Ment, represents many facets of the travel industry - tour operators, suppliers, agents and insurers. Among the broad range of travel and tourism services offered, one key speciality is handling the immediate needs following an incident or accident. Another core focus of the Department is to assist clients with day to day operations including drafting contracts, waivers and terms and conditions; reviewing marketing materials; providing risk management services; preparing critical incident protocols; and navigating effective relationships with vendors, DMCs, providers of accommodations and travel agents. The firm and its lawyers are members of many trade organizations: Adventure Travel Trade Association, United States Tour Operators Association, National Tour Association, Academy of Hospitality Industry Attorneys, Leisure Industries section of the International Bar Association, the Air & Space section of the American Bar Association, and the International Forum of Travel & Tourism. Our clients range from small, start-up operators to some of the world's most respected companies in the travel industry.


About Adventure Travel Trade Association

Established in 1990, the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) serves nearly 900 members in 80 countries worldwide. Members predominantly include tour operators, tourism boards, specialty agents and accommodations with a vested interest in the sustainable development of adventure tourism. The ATTA delivers solutions and connections that propel members towards their business goals and the industry toward a responsible and profitable future. Through its regional AdventureConnect events and annual Adventure Travel World Summit trade conference, the ATTA excels in professional learning, networking and partnering services. With expertise in research, education, adventure travel industry news and promotion, members of the ATTA receive competitive opportunities that help establish them as leaders in adventure tourism. (


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