Roundtable: Responsible Tourism in Rural & Indigenous Communities

September 29, 2021
Keri Pfeiffer (she/her)
2 min read

Join this roundtable discussion and learn how tourism can be used as a force for good in indigenous communities and developing countries.

In this chat, we talked about how your company can create and/or maintain partnerships with local communities & hear from our expert panel of leaders about how they are responsibly valuing the cultural and natural heritage of the lands in which they sell tours or work.

The roundtable will cover:

  • How tourism can help alleviate poverty
  • Appropriation vs. Appreciation – sell/offer experiences that are truly authentic
  • How to aid local communities in locations you might not necessarily sell tours in
  • How to give technical, marketing, or training assistance to local communities in regards to tourism

Watch Roundtable: Responsible Tourism in Rural & Indigenous Communities


Guest Speakers


Camille has over 30 years of experience working in cultural tourism development as a means of economic development and cultural perpetuation. Prior to returning back to STA  she worked 7 years as the Executive Director at the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association (AIANTA). During her tenure with AIANTA she developed and grew the education, interpretation, & public lands programs and launched the website dedicated to the American Indian Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiians. Camille serves on Sitka Economic Development Association, Alaska Travel Industry Association, AIANTA, and US Travel Board of Directors.

Aneeqa is an avid traveler and cyclist who left her corporate career of 10 years in 2017 to start The Mad Hatters: an experiential travel company taking local and international adventure seekers to lesser-explored areas of Pakistan for a rich cultural experience. In 2020, she co-founded Root Network with an aim to create an equitable and inclusive tourism industry in Pakistan by increasing access to meaningful economic opportunities for indigenous communities, promoting local culture and heritage, and advocating for sustainable development and responsible travel practices.

ExplorEquity, a company connecting sustainable travelers to real social justice issues. Catarina smashes disability stigmas as a dynamic speaker, trainer, workshop facilitator, and DEI consultant focused on disability (as @blindishlatina). Her areas of expertise are Disability Awareness, Disability Compliance, Accessibility + Inclusion, Intersectionality + Dimensions of Diversity.

Seleni has spent more than 20 years designing and directing large, multi-stakeholder initiatives such as the Mesoamerican Reef Tourism Initiative and the Sustainable Destinations Alliance of the Americas, that have mainstreamed sustainable tourism principles into key sectors of the tourism industry. She currently serves as a member of the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s Sustainable Tourism Committee; the Association of Caribbean States’ Steering Committee of the Sustainable Tourism Zone of the Caribbean; and, the Belize Marine Fund Steering Committee.

Sofía has over 10 years of experience in the tourism and hospitality industry in Guatemala, Mexico and Central America. She has a Masters in Cultural Tourism and a Bachelor’s Degree in hospitality and tourism management. Sofia is the co-founder and head of operations for  Etnica, a social enterprise focused on creating job opportunities through responsible tourism in rural Guatemala.