Design Your Life

9 Influential Black Men In Travel You Should Know

By Shontel Horne


There are countless black women shaping how we all see the world, but there are just as many influential black men making moves in the travel and hospitality space. From a man who traveled across Africa on foot to the CEO of the largest leisure travel company in the world, these men are helping travelers everywhere experience the best the world has to offer.


Mario Rigby

Mario Rigby spent two years crossing Africa by foot or by kayak, and his expedition lead him to develop Project EVA (“EVA” is short for Electric Vehicle Africa) set to launch in early 2019. Designed to shine a spotlight on the value of alternative technologies, the goal of Project EVA is to show how they can help fulfill transportation and energy needs in Africa.


Photo courtesy of Crossing Africa.


Robert L. Johnson

The founder of Black Entertainment Television is also the owner of hundreds of hotels under RLJ Lodging Trust, and his properties include New York City’s The The Knickerbocker and Hilton Miami Beach.


Photo courtesy of RLJ Companies


Arnold Donald

As the CEO of Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest leisure travel company that owns Carnival Cruise, Arnold Donald is over a $48 billion company that sets the standard for family travel.


Photo courtesy of Getty Images


Damon Lawrence and Marcus Carey

The Howard graduates are the owners of Homage Hospitality, a hospitality company that owns The Moor hotel in New Orleans and upcoming projects in Oakland, Detroit, and Brooklyn. Their approach to hospitality is inclusive and creative and their unique style is already resonating with travelers.



RELATED: A New Black-Owned Hotel Is Open For Business In New Orleans


Ronnie Dunston

As the founder of Road to 100 Countries, Ronnie Dunston has used his mileage and rewards expertise to help fellow black men and women travelers learn how to travel more often for less money.


Photo courtesy of Ronnie Dunston


Nathan Fluellen

Nathan Fluellen, better known as World Wide Nate, hosts a travel show for UMC Originals called World Wide Nate African Adventures and uses his platform to speak on topics like how to use social media to brand yourself and what it’s like to be black in adventure travel.


Photo courtesy of World Wide Nate


Rondel Holder

As the founder of Soul Society 101, Rondel Holder has created a travel platform that includes a podcast, a lively social media community, and a website that documents his adventures abroad as well as tips and advice for black men and women that want to begin traveling more often.


Photo courtesy @kingronthedon


Elton Anderson, Jr.

The celebrity photographer and travel influencer has worked with brands like Chase and KAYAK, and the bold,  inspiring group photos from his annual birthday trips are the definition of #friendgoals.


Photo courtesy of Elton Anderson Blog

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