DJ Doran currently serves as the Executive Director of the Aequalitas Advisory Board. DJ’s background and experience include a 23-year military career as a United States Air Force Reserve Pilot and a business career that spans over 25 years as CEO of multiple corporations across varied industries. DJ has held key leadership roles throughout his career and his management and leadership qualities as CEO have given him a unique ability to evaluate opportunities and successfully negotiate agreements that support the mission statement of the company, board of directors, and investors. Such experience and insight have allowed DJ to work with his team toward the profitable acquisition of media assets ahead of the competition.
DJ’s commitment to social justice and community involvement led him to acquire the oldest and largest LGBTQ newspaper in the Midwest called The Word. As Publisher/Editor-in-Chief he has led the turnaround of the newspaper from a tabloid rag to a respected newspaper with journalistic integrity. The Word was renamed KWIR Magazine in 2017 and became a national publication headquartered in Chicago.
DJ served as the President of the National Equality Media Association (NEMA), the only not for profit LGBTQ Media Association in the U.S. from 2018-2020.
Andrea Breanna is the founder and CEO of RebelMouse. RebelMouse is a creative agency with the best CMS platform in the world. The company has built two of the biggest new media companies to date — The Dodo and Axios — both of which were merely ideas when RebelMouse began the strategy, design, and development work. RebelMouse also powers United Airlines’ Hub and many of the most popular media sites you know and love. Collectively, RebelMouse-powered properties reach more than 50 million people a month, which makes it one of the top 50 properties in the U.S., and one of the top 500 in the world.
Andrea is proudly and openly transgender. Specifically, Andrea is a non-binary, transgender lesbian (transbian) who is happily married to Milena Berry, the founder and CEO of PowerToFly. Together they have four, beautiful kids and live in Tribeca, NYC.
Before RebelMouse, Andrea was CTO of The Huffington Post where she joined in the first year of the company’s life and ran the product, design, and engineering teams. After The Huffington Post was sold to AOL, Andrea ran the same groups for all of AOL’s media properties.
Before The Huffington Post, Andrea was vice president at Related Capital, a real estate finance company that went public with a market cap of $3+ billion. She started her career building the internet business for Palo Alto Software, which creates business plan software for entrepreneurs. Andrea has also been a regular judge and speaker at the annual Princeton Business Plan competition.
Andrea is on the Consumer Advisory Board for American Express and is a proud Techstars Mentor. You can find her on Twitter @AndreaBreannaNY
Jerry Cunningham is owner and CEO of OUT FRONT, Colorado’s LGBTQ media since 1976. He is also the founder of the National Equality Media Association — an industry trade organization advocating for and connecting all independent LGBTQ media across the nation. Jerry is proud to serve on the Aequalitas Advisory Board and looks forward to being part of the conversation that will shape the future of our media landscape.
Merryn Johns is the editor-in-chief of Curve Magazine. She is also a digital news producer covering mainstream international news and a contributing writer for EDGEi, Edge Media Network’s investigative department. She is a frequent global public speaker on LGBTQIA rights with a particular emphasis on women and diversity and inclusion. When she is not working as a journalist she is pushing boundaries as a playwright and is a current board member of America’s oldest LGBT theater writers’ group, Village Playwrights. Formerly from Sydney, Australia Merryn taught Arts at the University of New South Wales, where she earned her PhD, and media studies at Macquarie University before relocating to New York City to pursue her career in LGBTQ activism and journalism.
Orlando served as the CEO of Pride Media, the worlds largest media company dedicated to serving the LGBTQ+ community. He was responsible for expanding iconic brands like The Advocate and Out beyond the print titles into digital, social and events while maximizing revenue and site growth. His strategic vision focused on creating content, innovative use of technology and expanding the brand to a larger audience with a “queer” lens. Prior, he served as Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Swoup, a fast growing shopping and savings mobile app. Throughout his career, Orlando has developed a reputation for transforming and disrupting business models at media companies. He was VP Of Sales and Marketing at the Game Show Network, VP Head fo Broadcast and Digital Video for Everyday Health; SVP of Television/Radio for Martha Stewart Omni Media and Executive Director of Entertainment at Yahoo! He started his career at Viacom and moved to the Disney Company holding various positions and creating the companies cross divisional sales and marketing team. He currently serves on the boards of the Hudson Valley LGBTQ Center and LGBTQ Loyalty.
Guy Ross is the LGBTQ Sales Manager at the Tourist Development Council (TDC) in Key West, Florida where he has promoted Key West and the Florida Keys at national and international events for 7 years. Prior to being recruited by the TDC, Guy served as the Executive Director of the Key West Business Guild. He was an original partner in the marketing consulting firm Waterford LLP based in Middleburg, Virginia where he also advised a private family foundation and produced special fundraising events. Originally from Portsmouth, Virginia, Guy began his career as a speech writer at the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) in Washington, D.C. He later served as a public affairs officer at the National Association of Home Builders. It was while he was in Washington, D.C. that he formed his own marketing agency, Marketing Diagnostics, where his clientele grew from a core of real estate and development companies to later include banks, hotels and regional automotive dealerships. Guy has served on the boards of the Piedmont Environmental Council, Conserve Virginia, and the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum. After 8 years of active service as a Trustee, Guy continues to serve as a Trustee Emeritus at his undergraduate alma mater, The University of Richmond. Guy was ordained as an interfaith minister at Riverside Church, New York, NY in 2010 and is registered in chaplaincy/counseling.
Ed Salvato (pronouns he/him) offers LGBTQ marketing strategy to the travel, tourism and hospitality industries. Ed also runs the LGBTQ Travel Pavilion at the NY Times Travel Show and is the emcee at ITB’s Pink Pavilion. He’s co-author of the Handbook of LGBT Tourism & Hospitality Marketing: A Guide for Business Practice by Columbia University Press. Previously, Ed was editor in chief of OUT & ABOUT, Out Traveler and ManAboutWorld gay travel magazines. Ed is an adjunct instructor in marketing at NYU’s Jonathan M. Tisch Center of Hospitality teaching tourism and hospitality and a lecturer at University of Texas at Austin’s NYC Center teaching marketing. Reach him via +1-917-846-7177 or [email protected].
J. William Seccombe
Will Seccombe is President of Connect Travel, a strategic marketing business that connects destination marketers with the products, services, people and ideas that help them thrive in a rapidly evolving and highly competitive global marketplace. Connect Travel hosts and produces travel industry events including Connect Travel Marketplace, Connect Tour, the Marketing Leadership Summit, the eTourism Summit, the Connect THRIVE Summit, the RTO Summits and Active America China.
Prior to joining the tourism marketing company in May 2017, Seccombe served four years as President and Chief Executive Officer for VISIT FLORIDA, the state’s destination marketing organization. Will joined VISIT FLORIDA in March 2008 as Chief Marketing Officer. International and out-of-state visitors to the Sunshine State increased from 80 million in 2009 to over 112 million in 2016, with an associated annual increase in visitor spending of over $30 billion.
Will’s career began as regional sales manager with Vail Associates in 1989. He moved on to Loveland Ski Areas in 1992 as director of marketing, vice president of marketing for the Denver Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau in 1995 and vice president and chief operating officer with PRACO, LTD in 1999. In 2004, Seccombe founded Revolution Communications, LLC, a digital travel marketing firm.
Mr. Seccombe was named one of the Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales & Marketing by HSMAI, Top 50 Global Marketers in Travel by Skift, and the 2014 Hospitality Legend of the Year by the South Florida HSMAI.