Board of Directors & Advisors

Jamie kneels in front of a waterfall.

Jamie Sweeting – President

Jamie has spent the last 25 years working in tourism, conservation, development, and business management. He is passionate about Planeterra because in his decades of traversing the globe, he has yet to encounter another organization that is so effective at using tourism to improve the lives of some of the most under-resourced people on this planet — especially marginalized women, disadvantaged youth, and rural communities (with a priority focus on indigenous communities.) Prior to Planeterra, Jamie was Global Chief Environmental Officer at Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and headed up the travel industry program at the Center for Environmental Leadership in Business at Conservation International. He was formerly Chairman at Sustainable Travel International and has served on the boards of The International Ecotourism Society, the Global Sustainable Tourism Council and the Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Travel.  When Jamie is not working, you can find him enjoying time with his family or fishing (unfortunately rarely both at the same time!).

Bruce Poon Tip – Founder

Entrepreneur, leader and philanthropist Bruce Poon Tip is the founder of adventure travel company and social enterprise G Adventures. With a vision that travel could become a force for social good and significant wealth distribution, Bruce founded the nonprofit foundation Planeterra in 2003, to direct travel dollars into vulnerable and underserved communities around the world. He has addressed the United Nations and the World Bank, spoken at the headquarters of Apple and Google, and delivered keynote speeches at TED events and entrepreneurship conferences around the world. In 2012, Bruce was inducted into the Social Venture Network Hall of Fame. He was also awarded a Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, recognizing significant contributions to society, and was named Entrepreneur of the Year in 2006 and 2002.

Roula Poon Tip – Director

As co-founder, Roula has been part of Planeterra since Day 1 in 2003 – the same year their daughter, Planeterra’s namesake was born, their daughter Terra. Roula and Bruce named the organization they founded with love and a belief that it would grow to have an impact in communities around the world.  Roula has always supported Planeterra’s mission to change lives through travel. She has been to over 90 countries and visited at least 20 Planeterra projects.  For 10 years, she and Bruce have been bringing their daughters and family friends on unforgettable trips around the world visiting Planeterra projects along the way.   When Roula is not travelling afar, you may catch her in Toronto taking in a game of Raptor’s basketball – she is one of their biggest fans – and a basketball player herself!

Zeina Gedeon – Director

Zeina believes that travellers can do more than just give back to countries we visit; that skills and tools can be used to develop local capacity and make economics self-sustainable — that’s what motivates her to be involved with Planeterra. Zeina has over 20 years experience in the Travel Industry with a focus on technology and e-commerce. She has been involved in the leadership of several iconic Canadian travel companies, which include Air Canada Vacations and Travel Brands Inc. Zeina has a track record for turning around companies profitability by building extraordinary teams. A true adventure seeker at heart, Zeina enjoys car racing, thrill rides and roller coasters.

Jody Hamade – Director and Treasurer

D. Jody Hamade is a retired risk management professional having spent twenty years in the banking industry followed by fifteen years with Ontario Power Generation.  Jody completed his career in 2016 as Vice President, Enterprise Risk Management (‘ERM’), having built a world class ERM program at OPG. Jody enjoys an active retirement, playing regularly at Whitevale Golf Club, and engaging in spinning, yoga, and weight training.  In addition to being avid travellers, Jody and his wife Deborah are committed snowbirds and spend winters in Naples, Florida.  The Hamades are also active patrons of the arts and are Playwright Circle members of the Stratford Festival and Marquee Club members of Roy Thomson Hall.Jody is keen to lend his experience and knowledge to worthy not-for-profits and views the Planeterra Foundation as an excellent opportunity to do so.  Having recently been awarded emeritus member status with the Conference Board of Canada’s Strategic Risk Council, Jody hopes to leverage his broad network for the benefit of Planeterra.

Prof. Dr. Walter Jamieson FCIP RPP – Advisor

For more than 40 years Walter Jamieson has worked to bridge the academic and consultancy worlds by challenging conventional thinking using creative, innovative and strategic problem-solving methodologies. Jamieson’s work is based on a sound set of responsible and sustainable values and principles, which include early work in Canada using tourism and heritage resources as tools for community and economic development; research and consultancy work in China; extensive community-based tourism in Asia; and exploring the power of tourism as a tool for economic and social development and leadership in creating an innovative service and experience design opportunities in Thailand. Having been a member of faculty and management at universities in the Canada, United States, Thailand and Japan, Jamieson’s academic experience is complemented with a wide range of consultancy projects that put theory into practice and work to evolve the tourism and travel industries. A vital part of Jamieson’s work is centred on contributing to expanding the practical knowledge and technical aspects being practiced in the tourism and travel industries. He has conducted over 150 public and private sector projects at an international, national and local level and authored and contributed to over 140 academic publications. Jamieson’s extensive work has been recognized with the Queen’s Jubilee Medal for his contributions to heritage preservation in Canada, the Heritage Canada Lieutenant Governor’s Award, and his election to the College of Fellows of the Canadian Institute of Planners.