GSTC Election Committee

The GSTC Board of Directors includes twelve seats with three-year terms, with annual elections for those among the twelve which are vacant or expired. This committee plays an oversight role on the process of nominating and electing board members to those seats. Their specific duties are dictated by the organization's bylaws.

Steve Noakes



Organization: Pacific Asia Tourism Pty Ltd 
Position: Chairman
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In early 2009, Steve Noakes was active in the process to linking the Sustainable Tourism Stewardship Council (hosted by Rainforest Alliance) and the Partnership for Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria (coordinated by the UN Foundation).  He served on the Interim Advisory Committee of the Tourism Sustainability Council which evolved out of that process. The TSC went on to become the Global Sustainable Tourism Council where he served on the Board during its first 3 years. During that time he was a member of the Membership Committee, the Finance Committee and the Education & Training Committee of the GSTC Board and represented the GSTC at numerous high level forums around the Pacific Asia region. He retired from the GSTC Board in 2012, and remains as CoChair of the Knowledge Networking, Education & Training Working Group (KNET WG). In 2013, he became a member of the GSTC Elections Committee. Based in Australia, Steve has been active in industry, NGOs and academia for some 35 years – with a focus on the Pacific Asia region.

C B Ramkumar

Organization: Our Native Village
Position: Founder and Managing Director
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Ram has been an advertising and marketing professional for two decades, spending most of his professional career outside India in the Middle East.  In 2006, Ram returned to India to follow his dream and passion, starting Our Native Village-an eco-retreat for holistic health. Our Native Village follows a 100% eco principle, where all the major pillars of sustainability are on sustainable platforms.  Our Native Village has received numerous awards and top listings by sustainable tourism stakeholders, and is a network member of the GSTC.

Invited by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India to serve on the Planning Projects committee for Tiger conservation, Ram is also a Core Committee member of the KTF (Karnataka Tourism Forum), and a member of the special committee on tourism of the BCCI (Bangalore Chamber of Commerce and Industry). Ram is a regular speaker at industry events, a visiting faculty member at colleges in Bangalore, and a faculty member for the training of the Indian Forest Officers held in Karnataka.  Ram has been part of the consultative process of the GSTC and has worked with UNEP and the UN Foundation to bring this criterion into India, with a successful national launch in New Delhi in 2010.

Eric Ricuarte


Organization: Greenview 
Position: Founder

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Since founding Greenview in 2008, Eric has helped several global hospitality organizations measure and report on sustainability and ESG, in addition to his 10 years of experience in operations and consulting in diverse nature and cultural tourism projects globally.  Eric earned a B.S. from the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration and a M.S. in Tourism & Travel Management from New York University.  Eric is a member of the UFI Committee on Sustainable Development and the International Standards Working Group of the GSTC.  He has held a research fellowship at the Cornell University Center for Hospitality Research and is adjunct instructor at the NYU University Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism.

Masaru Takayama

masaru kimono

Organization: Japan Ecolodge Association and Asian Ecotourism Network 
Position: Founder

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Mr. Masaru Takayama founded Japan Ecolodge Association  (ECOLA) and Asian Ecotourism Network (AEN), to promote true ecotourism and ecolodge in the region by creating a platform for ecotourism fraternity.  The environmentally-friendly accommodations standard developed by EOLA is recognized by the GSTC to bottom up the industry standards in the Japaneses marketplace.  Working as a global communtiy-based ecotourism consultant, ecolodge advisor, and ecotravel agency 'Spirit of Japan Travel' in Kyoto, Masaru serves a number of key positions in the organizations both home and abroad pertinent to ecotourism and protected areas.  Mr. Takayama has served as a Tourism for Tomorrow Awards on-site evaluation judge 2013, 2014, 2015, on the World Travel and Tourism Council World Legacy Awards for 2016, and the National Geographic Responsible Tourism Awards for 2012 and 2015.

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