Breaking Travel News

Bear Grylls keynote speaker at WTTC Global Summit

Bear Grylls keynote speaker at WTTC Global Summit

British adventurer Bear Grylls and American film producer Lawrence Bender are among the keynote speakers at the World Travel & Tourism Council Global Summit, which starts today in Manila, Philippines.

Industry leaders have gathered with more than 20 government representatives in Manila, to continue aligning efforts to support the sector’s recovery and move beyond to a safer, more resilient, inclusive, and sustainable future.

American film producer Lawrence Bender and critically acclaimed novelist Kevin Kwan is also taking to the stage in Manila at the Global Summit.

During his career, Lawrence Bender received a staggering 36 Academy Award nominations, resulting in eight wins for blockbuster movies such as Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Good Will Hunting.

He is a passionate social and political activist and is on the Advisory Board for the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. He is also a member of the Global Zero campaign.


Kevin Kwan is a Singapore-born American novelist and writer of satirical novels, who in 2018 was made Time magazine’s list of 100 most influential people.

In 2013, Kwan published Crazy Rich Asians, and in the same year, Hunger Games producer Nina Jacobson secured the film rights which was released in the U.S. in 2018.

Other speakers taking part in the Global Summit include Indonesian/Dutch activist Melati Wijsen who will be there in person, former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon will address the audience virtually, Ministers from around the world, and business leaders from many of the world’s largest Travel & Tourism companies.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said: “We are thrilled to have Bear, Lawrence and Kevin join us and add to our already impressive list of speakers at our 21st Global Summit in Manila, which kicks off in less than a week.

“As the world begins to recover from the pandemic, our event will bring together many of the world’s most powerful people in Travel & Tourism to discuss and secure its long-term future, which is critical to economies and employment around the world.”

Other notable speakers taking to the stage during the Global Summit will be international business leaders such as Arnold Donald, President & CEO Carnival Corporation and WTTC Chair; Greg O’Hara, Founder and Senior Managing Director Certares and Vice Chairman at WTTC; Craig Smith, Group President International Division Marriott International; Maria Anthonette Velasco-Allones, COO Tourism Promotion Board Philippines; Federico Gonzalez, CEO Radisson; and Nelson Boyce, Head of Travel for the Americas at Google Inc.

A hybrid event, WTTC’s Global Summit will also feature Kelly Craighead, President & CEO CLIA; Jane Sun, CEO, Ariane Gorin, President Expedia for Business; and Darrell Wade, Chairman Intrepid Group; amongst others.

The WTTC Global Summit in Manila is sponsored by Resorts World Manila, Global Rescue, Okada Manila, Turkish Airlines, Cebu Pacific Air, Etihad Airways, Philippine Airlines, Tourism Promotion Board Philippines, Hilton Manila, UBE Express, Inc., Tieza, Nissan Philippines, Inc., Press Reader, SSI Group, Xpansiv.