Expedition Team

Our team is the key to your incredible adventure


Explore the islands and undersea in the company of top experts. Benefit from the knowledge of our Galápagos Island travel guides —team specialties include marine and terrestrial biology, botany, geology, and more—and passion for the Galápagos to observe and understand more of all you’ll see.  And enjoy their company; you’ll find them highly engaging and fun to share a drink or dinner with, as well as a trail hike.


Meet the expedition team for this departure

Or
  • Alan Turchik

    Guest Speaker
    Alan Turchik is the Product Development Manager for the Exploration Technology Lab at the National Geographic Society. He is in charge of scaling systems that the team has created, such as the Dropcam, a deep ocean benthic exploration tool. 

    Read More
  • Christian Saa

    Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor
    Christian was born on the island of Isabela in the Galápagos archipelago. He grew up on a farm and had a magical childhood devoid of cars, electricity, telephones—just pure nature and playful sea lions along the beach. At the age of seven, he moved with his family to Santa Cruz Island, the economic hub of the Galápagos Islands. His father began to work in tourism and took Christian around the islands during school vacations. It was during this time that Christian learned to love and understand the real value of this unique archipelago, and he decided to devote his life to its stewardship. A lifelong passion for nature and its creatures took root in his heart, and he eventually decided to become a naturalist, which he has now been doing for 18 years now.

    Read More
  • Cindy Manning

    Undersea Specialist
    Born in Lima, Peru, of North American parents, Cindy and her family subsequently lived in several South American and European countries with a couple stops in Peoria, Illinois. Cindy received a degree in biology from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana. Afterwards, Cindy spent a year and a half teaching science in the Western Province of Kenya, East Africa. 

    Read More
  • Craig Hemsath

    Grosvenor Teacher Fellow
    Craig earned his B.A. degree in Biology and Education in 2004 from Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa. Soon after he began work on a Master of Science degree, completing in 2007 in Biology, with an emphasis on Restoration Ecology from the University of Northern Iowa. Craig studied granivory and seed loss in relation to prairie reconstruction. Along with continuing to study granivory, Craig’s current interest is in locating new records of rare plants across the tall grass prairie region.

    Read More
  • Gaby Bohorquez

    Naturalist
    Gaby was born and raised in Guayaquil, Ecuador. Her first job in the Galapagos was on board a 90-passenger cruise ship as the cruise director’s assistant, and she fell under the spell of the Enchanted Isles. She returned to Guayaquil to study at the Espiritu Santo Technological University to obtain a degree in Tourism Management. Her fascination for the islands was still strong so, after finishing her studies, Gaby took the opportunity to join the Naturalist Guide’s course, jointly organized by the Galapagos National Park Service and the Charles Darwin Research Station. That was back in 1992, and she has been a naturalist since, keeping her deep love and passion for the islands during all these years.

    Read More
  • Gianna Haro

    Naturalist
    Most of Gianna´s memories seem to be dreams, made on flawless white sandy beaches with black lava rock contours and gorgeous turquoise ocean waters. Most of it happened while barefoot, in an enchanting place that some people regard as an ideal natural laboratory, the Galápagos Islands. For her it was home. Gianna grew up going to the beach nearly every day, snorkeling in crystal clear waters, playing with wild flowers, having sea lions steal her ice cream, observing marine iguanas, and identifying invertebrates. The latter was by no means technically accurate—she dubbed each new discovery with its own made-up scientific name. At some point during those early years, being an observer became an innate ability and she knew she wanted to be a biologist. 

    Read More
  • Ixora Berdonces

    Naturalist
    Ixora was born in the Galapagos Islands, back when the streets were made of sand and gravel. Void of TV and tablets, her childhood friends and pristine natural surroundings made for an inspiring upbringing. She was always drawn to the ocean and her local environment, with her first adventures taking place underwater, in mangrove estuaries, and perched in treetops. Not surprisingly, she was scuba diving before the age of 12 and led her first diving trips as a Dive Master in the Galapagos Marine Reserve when she was 18. 

    Read More
  • Joe Super

    Grosvenor Teacher Fellow
    Joe Super is an environmentally active biology teacher at Minot High School in Minot, North Dakota. He has passionately taught riparian monitoring in his classroom for 20 years. Each year, 400 students, all sophomores, monitor stream health in local waterways. His students learn critical thinking skills learning about local flooding issues. Students become Citizen Scientists interacting with local and state professionals helping to make decisions in their community. Joe has been working with National Geographic and North Dakota Geographic Alliance for 10 years. This relationship has increased the scope of his curriculum to include local watershed geography, ocean awareness, and community water activism. In 2010 Joe and three other biology teachers from Minot participated in a 2-year National Geographic Oceans Institute. This Oracle sponsored course brought sixty high school biology teachers to a week-long institute at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, CA. Teachers crafted curriculum about Marine Ecology, Human Impacts, on oceans.

    Read More
  • Paula Tagle

    Expedition Leader
    Paula grew up in Guayaquil where she obtained an undergraduate degree in geology from the Polytechnic University of Guayaquil. She enjoyed many field trips all around Ecuador and during her vacations traveled in Central and South America in the hope of learning more about her people and culture. The last year of her studies she worked at a mine looking for a more ecologically responsible way of recovering gold. Interested more in volcanoes than in raw materials, she came to Galápagos, a mecca for geologists, in 1992. She was bewitched by the other wonders of the islands and became a naturalist guide for the Galápagos National Park.

    Read More
  • Paulina Cepa

    Guest Speaker
    Originally from the Galápagos, Paulina Cepa currently is pursuing a biology degree at the University of Guayaquil, in the Faculty of Natural Sciences. She has a strong interest in marine science and resource management, which lead her to volunteer at the Galápagos National Park to support their fisheries and marine conservation programs. 

    Read More

Get our newsletter

Join us for updates, insider reports & special offers.

Privacy Policy