Eastern Chapter Candidates
1st Vice Chair
Theresa Gawlas Medoff is a staff writer/associate editor at AAA Mid-Atlantic, where she works on two travel-focused magazines: AAA World (circulation 2.6 million) and AAA Traveler Worldwise (circulation 140,000). Prior to joining AAA in 2014, she was a long-time freelance writer, a side job she continues today. She has served for the past two years as Active-at-Large of the Eastern Chapter, with responsibilities that include membership and sponsorship. She has also served in the past as Treasurer of the chapter.
An Associate member of SATW since 1985, Joan is a forward-thinking public relations executive with extensive travel, food/wine and hospitality experience. She has a solid track record in the development of marketing strategies, strategic alliances and partnerships, media relations, event planning and execution. She has championed innovative brand communications for clients on behalf of leading international organizations. Accountabilities include strategic planning, branding, public relations, event planning, and staff mentoring.
Relevant professional memberships include leadership positions within SATW where she currently serves as Secretary of the Executive Committee of the Eastern Chapter; past Northeast Chapter Executive Committee (Secretary and Treasurer); Cushman Award winner; member of multiple Convention Committees; pre-/post-conference tour leader and new member liaison for multiple conventions.
She is a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier International (Secretary, Board of Directors, New York Chapter); HSMAI (Senior Judge, Adrian Awards for Public Relations – Platinum/"Best in Show” Awards; Council of Foreign Relations.
Suzanne Wenz is the Director of Marketing Communications and Public Relations for Boston Park Plaza and Taj Boston, which are managed by Highgate Hotels. Prior to joining Highgate, Ms Wenz was the Regional Director of Public Relations for Fairmont Hotels & Resorts in the Northeast U.S. and Bermuda. Based at the Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston, Ms Wenz managed public relations and communications programs, including hotel openings and repositioning, in Boston and Bermuda, as well as Fairmont’s properties in the Northeast US including The Plaza in New York. Previously, Ms Wenz was Vice President, Travel and Hospitality, at Clarke & Company, a Boston-based public relations and issues management firm. Ms Wenz began her career at Jackson & Company, a boutique public relations firm, where she held a variety of positions, including Senior Manager of Client Service.
Ms Wenz has served on the board of The Friends of Copley Square, Director-at-Large on the Emmanuel College Alumni Association Board and on the Board of Advisors for Historic Hotels of America. Ms Wenz resides in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston. She is an enthusiastic explorer who has traveled to five continents and, in between enjoying New England, always likes to have a new adventure on the horizon.
I've been a freelance travel writer since 2007 and a member of SATW since 2013. Over the years, SATW has played a crucial role in helping me forge relationships with fellow journalists and associates, as well offered valuable professional development opportunities. I feel honored to be part of SATW and look forward to working as an Active-at-Large for the Eastern Chapter.
As a longtime resident of the Washington D.C. Area, I specialize in writing about MidAtlantic travel, food and recreation. Over the years, my articles have appeared in The Washington Post, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Washingtonian. I'm also a contributor to RootsRated, Fodors and ForbesTravel as well as dining editor for VivaTysons magazine. I've recently expanded my freelance business by creating content and shooting images for CVB's including Destination DC, Shenandoah Valley and Southwest Virginia.
Thanks to my membership in SATW, I've received several significant assignments including co-authorship of two books 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles of Washington DC and The Unofficial Guide to Washington DC. I will do my best to connect members of the Eastern Chapter in meaningful ways and look forward to being part of SATW's ongoing metamorphosis.