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Annual awards celebrate individuals and businesses that are making the world more

Annual awards celebrate individuals and businesses that are making the world more (Forimmediaterelease.net) FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida - The 33rd Annual Global Convention of the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association in Cape Town (April 14-16) will showcase events and individuals that have enhanced the landscape of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender tourism.

The IGLTA board of directors selects the IGLTA Honors from the association’s member businesses in 80 countries and its allies. “Our conference is known for its networking and educational opportunities, but it’s also a place to celebrate those who are improving the world of LGBT travel,” says IGLTA Board Chair Dan Melesurgo. “This year’s IGLTA Honors recipients come from Spain, Japan, and South Africa, and have all made significant contributions to making their countries safer and more welcoming.”

• Community (based in IGLTA’s convention host city): Nondumiso “Ndumie" Funda is a lesbian activist fighting for LGBT rights in the townships of Cape Town. In March 2008, she founded the organization Luleki Sizwe, named after her late fiancée and her best friend. Both women were raped because of their sexual orientation and died from HIV/AIDS. Luleki Sizwe, which means “discipline the nation constructively," focuses on education to combat homophobia.

• Networking: Fitur Gay (LGBT) was established in 2011 as an exhibition and educational conference dedicated to the LGBT tourism segment within the Fitur international trade fair in Madrid, Spain, and has shown significant growth each year. This event provides a showcase for LGBT businesses and events in Spain (and beyond) to a global audience of tourism and media professionals. In addition, the IGLTA staff honors a member of its volunteer ambassador team for outstanding contributions to the association and LGBT tourism.

• Ambassador(s) of the Year: Shiho Ikeuchi and Shintaro Koizumi, representing Western Japan and Asia, respectively. Ikeuchi is the Director of Overseas Marketing at the Hotel Granvia in Kyoto; Koizumi is president of Tokyo-based Out Asia Travel. Through their collaborative efforts, Japan now has the largest number of IGLTA member businesses in Asia.

For photos, full bios of the honorees, or interview requests, please contact href="mailto:loann.halden@iglta.org">loann.halden@iglta.org For more information on the Annual Global Convention, please visit www.iglta.org/convention

The event would not be possible without the generous support of our convention sponsors. Presenting Level – South Africa Tourism, South African Airways, National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, United States Agency for International Development; Official Level – Cape Town & Western Cape Convention Bureau, IBM, Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation, Rhino Africa Safaris, Tourism Toronto, VisitBritain, Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater; Conference Level – Preferred Hotel Group, Silversea; Conference Partners – The GSA Travel Trade Monthly, IGLTA Foundation, KwaZulu-Natal Gay & Lesbian Tourism Association, Southern Africa Tourism Services Association, Uthando South Africa.

About IGLTA

The International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association is the leading member-based global organization dedicated to LGBT tourism and a proud Affiliate Member of the United Nations World Tourism Organization. IGLTA’s mission is to expand LGBT tourism globally for the benefit of travelers and its members. The association also is a proud supporter of ECPAT’s Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct to prevent child exploitation. IGLTA membership includes LGBT and LGBT-friendly accommodations, destinations, service providers, travel agents, tour operators, events and travel media in 80 countries. For more information: iglta.org and follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @iglta

eTN is a media partner for IGLTA.

MEDIA CONTACT: LoAnn Halden, Loann.Halden@iglta.org , +1.954.630.1637 x 714

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