Board of Trustees
Emmanuel Lebrun-Damiens, Consul Général, Honorary Chairman
Andrea Kennedy, Vice Chair
Stephan, whose mother is American and father French, was born & raised in France. He holds a French degree in Business Law and an MBA in International Finance. Stephan began his career as a stockbroker in France, working for the French equivalent of the SEC. In 1991, while already living in San Francisco, Stephan passed the series 7 exam and worked for Charles Schwab on their development projects in Europe. Stephan has travelled extensively, namely through Central Asia with a backpack for a full year in 1990 (including a memorable hitchhiking experience from the Iranian border to Paris). To this day, Stephan has visited over 70 countries. He is a true citizen of the world.
In 1992, born from his entrepreneurial spirit and his total passion for travel, Stephan founded Go West Tours, a San Francisco based company, developing land travel programs into USA & Canada for international tourism professionals (B2B only). This includes designing itineraries, selecting & contracting with all parties i.e. hotels, restaurants, transportation, attractions, guides; as well as troubleshooting while groups are on the road. The company is working with tourism professionals from 32 countries (still B2B only), selling programs throughout the USA & Canada to over 55,000 passengers yearly, booking about 210,000 room nights yearly, employing 55 full time staff (in San Francisco, NYC, Montreal, Frankfurt & Paris), and contracting services with over 120 tour directors. The company has been developed and co-owned with Florence Solal, his wife and business partner for over 20 years.
Industry involvement includes:
Board of Directors, Receptive Services Association of America (RSAA), 2002-2010
President, RSAA, 2004 & 2005
Chair, National Tours Association (NTA) Growth Committee, 2008-2009
Member, NTA, 1997-Present
Over the last few years, Florence & Stephan have worked at developing a real estate portfolio. Amongst other commercial/rentals real estate investments, they operate and manage 4 small boutique San Francisco hotels.