Inspiring Luminaries Announced for Seabourn Conversations Aboard Seabourn Sojourn 2018-2019 Extended Explorations Voyages

SEATTLE, July 9, 2018Seabourn, the world’s finest ultra-luxury cruise line, is continuing its quest to intrigue and inform guests with a new line-up of distinguished Seabourn Conversations guest speakers and personalities aboard Seabourn Sojourn’s upcoming Extended Explorations voyages beginning in October 2018. The popular onboard enrichment program will host distinguished speakers and personalities from a variety of fields including anthropology, space exploration, culinary, military history, and the arts.

This season’s line-up of Seabourn Conversationalists includes first-time and returning speakers to keep guests entertained and engaged as they explore the South Pacific, Hawaii, Australia and New Zealand aboard Seabourn Sojourn. The Seabourn Conversations enrichment program allows guests to hear about rich life experiences firsthand, through lectures but also as speakers participate in the daily social scene onboard, sharing meals, adventures ashore and casual chats throughout the voyage.

“We are always excited to put together a new line-up of the most interesting personalities to inform and entertain our guests on an array of topics while they travel with us,” said Richard Meadows, president of Seabourn. “The highly successful Seabourn Conversations series continues to introduce noteworthy personalities to share their life’s work and experiences from rarely heard but authoritative perspectives.”

Select speakers of the 2018-2019 Seabourn Conversations program aboard Seabourn Sojourn include:

  • Frank Buzzard (October 15, 2018 voyage) – During a distinguished 30-year career with NASA, Buzzard served as Chief Engineer of the Space Shuttle, Chief Engineer of the International Space Station (ISS), and ISS Program Director/Senior System Integration Manager. He is now a part-time professor at the University of Colorado Boulder and runs his own aerospace consulting business.

  • Ted Libbey (October 15, 2018 voyage) – One of America’s most highly regarded music critics, Libbey spent 15 years as a commentator on NPR’s “Performance Today.” He was Director of Media Arts at the National Endowment for the Arts, an editor at High Fidelity and Musical America, as well as a music critic for The New York Times

  • Dr. Charles Urbanowitz (October 15, 2018 voyage) – With more than 45 years of research and travel experience in the Pacific, Urbanowitz is a leading expert on the culture and traditions of the region. He was recognized as one of five “master teachers” during his time in the Anthropology Department of California State University, Chico.

  • Sam Choy (October 15, 2018 voyage) – Founder of the Sam Choy Keauhou Poke Contest, Chef Choy has been creating cuisine with fresh, local ingredients from the Hawaiian Islands since before “farm-to-table”.He has authored 18 cookbooks, appeared on numerous Food Network shows, and was twice a guest star on the television series Hawai’i Five-0.

  • Colonel Gerald McCormack (November 2, 2018 voyage) – Now retired from the Australian Army, McCormack commanded tank troops in South Vietnam and a tank regiment in Australia. A graduate of four military colleges including The Royal Military College and Joint Services Staff College of Australia, he has lectured in history at the Officer Cadet School and at Senior Officer Colleges.

  • Hon. Sir Jim McLay KNZM QSO (November 2, 2018 voyage) - A New Zealand lawyer, politician, businessman and diplomat, Sir Jim McLay CNZM QSO was a member of the New Zealand Parliament and a Cabinet Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition. He had a successful business career, including chairmanship of Macquarie New Zealand, and was director of a number of publicly listed companies. For six years, he led New Zealand’s representation at the United Nations in New York, and has performed a number of other diplomatic roles.

  • Dr. Richard Turnbull (November 19, 2018 voyage) – A professor in the History of Art Department at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, Turnbull teaches courses on the art and civilization of Oceania and is a lecturer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art offering richly illustrated presentations celebrating the religion, art, architecture and culture of the South Pacific and Australia.

  • Philip Martin (November 19, 2018 voyage) – A Professor of Agriculture and Resource Economics at the University of California-Davis, Martin worked on labor and immigration issues under former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and works for United Nations agencies around the world. He also travels widely to remote areas of Africa and Asia with his bird-watching wife Cecily.

  • Harvey Broadbent (December 11, 2018 voyage) – A well-known writer, lecturer, broadcaster, and documentary film and TV producer, Broadbent was honored as a Member of the Order of Australia in 2016 for his life’s work in researching and writing history and producing historical documentaries. As a producer at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation for 23 years, he won several awards while specializing in cultural history documentary and special event television.

  • Dr. Lawrence Blair (January 6, 2019 voyage) - Dr. Blair is a documentary filmmaker who co-produced the internationally-acclaimed and Emmy Award-winning BBC/PBS television series Ring of Fire, highlighting his many years of exploration of Indonesia. He is also a Visiting Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Southern California.

  • Kevin Miller (January 16, 2019 voyage) - Miller is an internationally known traveler, adventurer, speaker, author, and leadership/business consultant whose action- and fun-packed seminars have delighted audiences everywhere. He is president of VisionBound International, Inc., an international consulting company, and is also a senior consultant for FranklinCovey. A retired career regular Army officer, Kevin served as a company commander in the 7th Infantry Division and was involved in Desert Storm. 

  • Bob Smolik (January 30, 2019 voyage) - Bob Smolik is a veteran diplomat and scholar, and has worked in various U.S. embassies around the world. His expertise as Diplomat in Residence at the University of Michigan is in economics and trade, as well as in U.N. human rights and NATO security issues. As an economic diplomat, he worked to open foreign markets to U.S. trade and investment on a fair and equal basis. He serves as ambassador of American society and culture, helping Washington to understand the political and economic dynamics of other nations.

Extended Explorations offers travelers a variety of ways to uncover new destinations by allowing guests to have an in-depth experience in a specific region or effortlessly move from one region to another. Adding a week, month, or an entire season offers many benefits for guests, including the opportunity for overnight stays in major ports with accommodations on board and ashore.

The longest Extended Explorations voyage spans 128 days, from October 15, 2018 to February 21, 2019, departing from Los Angeles to Cape Town, South Africa. For those who are not able to sail the longer voyages, guests can choose or in some cases combine shorter segments that best fit their schedules and interests.

For the full schedule of speakers participating in Seabourn Conversations, visit


Notes to Editors:

Seabourn is consistently ranked among the world's top travel choices by professional critics and the discerning readers of prestigious travel publications such as Departures, Travel + Leisure and Condé Nast Traveler. Its stylish, distinctive cruising vacations are renowned for: 

  • Intimate ships with a private club atmosphere
  • Intuitive, personalized service provided by staff passionate about exceeding guests expectations
  • Curated voyages to all seven continents delivering award-winning experiences
  • All ocean front suites, luxuriously appointed
  • Complimentary premium spirits and fine wines available on board at all times
  • Welcome Champagne and complimentary in-suite bar stocked with your preferences
  • Tipping is neither required, nor expected
  • Finest resort at sea that is masterfully designed 
  • World-class dining, further enhanced through a culinary partnership with Chef Thomas Keller
  • All dining venues are complimentary, dine where, when and with whom you wish
  • Seabourn Conversations, connecting with visionary experts
  • Ventures by Seabourn, optional shore excursions, enhance and extend destination experiences in select destinations.
  • Select purposeful and sustainable travel experiences in partnership with UNESCO
  • Spa & Wellness by Dr. Andrew Weil, featuring an exclusive mindful living program
  • An evening entertainment experience in collaboration with Sir Tim Rice


Seabourn is a proud member of World's Leading Cruise Lines. The exclusive alliance also includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Cunard Line, Costa Cruises, AIDA, P&O Cruises UK, P&O Cruises Australia and fathom. Seabourn is a brand of Carnival Corporation and plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL and NYSE: CUK). It has formed a partnership with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to help protect World Heritage sites.