Please join Seatrade Cruise Global and the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA) for the 2017 edition of the Professional Women in Cruise brunch. This year we are introducing a new format that allows for you to network with your peers and hear from a panel of extraordinary women.

To register for this event you may follow one of two options.  If you are already registered to attend Seatrade Cruise Global, please fill out this form.  Or, if you have not already registered to attend Seatrade Cruise Global, please register here

Date: Thursday, 16 March 017

Time: 11 AM - 1 PM 

Location: Room 220/221, Level 2, Fort Lauderdale Broward County Convention Center

Pricing: $70 for WISTA members, $80 for non WISTA members (details on how to become a member of WISTA are listed below)

Details: Registering for Professional Women in Cruise will also include access to the show floor for three days.  Please note, Seatrade Cruise Global is donating a portion of proceeds from this brunch to Mercy Ships, Seatrade Cruise Global's non-profit partner. 

Anna Silva

A proud graduate of State University of New York Maritime College, Anna holds both a Bachelor of Engineering in Naval Architecture and a Master of Science in International Transportation Management.   She sailed for several years aboard tugs as the Second Mate before coming ashore.  She has worked as a Ship’s Agent, Container Terminal Operations Manager, Stevedore and a Navigation Instructor at SUNY Maritime College onboard their Training Ship Empire State.  She is currently the Manager of Commercial Port Operations and Budgeting for a major cruise line.  

Peg Buchan

Peg Buchan has worked for Broward County Government for 16 years, for the past ten as Assistant Port Director at Port Everglades. She is responsible for the Port Strategic Business Plan and coordination of Port legislative affairs with elected officials, industry associations, civic leaders, and the general public. She is deeply involved in port environmental issues and manages the Port Environmental Awareness Initiative, an EPA Partnership Agreement to model air quality, Florida Inland Navigation District dredging activities, and a grant for NOAA water level stations.

Prior to her current position she was the Port’s Director of Business Administration, the County’s Small Business Division Manager, Interim Director of Real Property, and Assistant to the Director of Public Works/Facilities Management.  Peg holds a B.S. in Professional Management from Nova Southeastern University and a Master’s Degree in Negotiations, Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding from California State University. She is a Wife (46 years) a Mom (2 daughters) and has six amazing grandchildren. 

Helen Panagos

Helen Panagos is Vice President of Marketing and Sales for both Crystal Yacht Cruises and Crystal Residences.  She is also VP of Crystal Air Cruise Destination Experiences.  Helen has a broad experience in the cruise industry and has a great propensity for all areas of the business, making her the perfect fit to lead the very first phase in Crystal’s growing portfolio.

Helen held executive positions at both Seabourn/Cunard in position of VP Global Shoreside Services, and after that at RCCL where she was most recently the Director of Global Product Development for all of the RCCL brands.  An accomplished Executive with over 35 years of experience in successfully providing vision and strategy in leading teams in areas such as Sales & Marketing, Operations and reenergizing Destination Development. She oversaw many global partnerships and has solid expertise in cost efficiencies and improving companies ROIs. 

Ginger Garte

Is a maritime professional with more than 24 years of experience in the industry.  In this role, she is responsible for growth, strategy and delivery of environmental and sustainability services for a broad range of marine clients including ferries, naval, cargo, and cruise ships.  Her expertise includes global aspects for waste management, port facilities infrastructure, environmental regulations, due diligence audits, risk and gap analysis, as well as natural resource conservation and protection.  She also develops and leads stakeholder engagement workshops as well as onsite workshops to support client organizations in developing their stewardship strategy.

Ginger obtained her Geological Science degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and was then selected to serve as a U.S. Commissioned Officer with the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  Upon completion of Officer Training School, Ginger served for five years on board NOAA’s research vessels and land based laboratories. Her geological research led to a number of publications on South Florida ecosystems.  She has also served as Superintendent, Environmental Health and Safety Department, at Carnival Cruise Lines and Senior Analyst, Environmental Stewardship Department, serving all cruise lines within Royal Caribbean Cruises Limited.

Ginger takes an active role in the  community where she chairs the World Ocean Council – Port Reception Facility working group, and is a board member of UpGyre’, a non-profit that develops technologies that transform ocean pollution into useful products.   She also serves as council member and judge for The Fairchild Botanical Garden Challenge, and is the Sustainability Committee Chair for the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA).  Throughout her career, Ginger, has been recognized for contributions and active participation, more recently she was the recipient of the Lloyd’s Register Bronze Award.


WISTA is an international organization for women in management positions involved in the maritime transportation business and related trades worldwide. It is a major player in attracting more women to the industry and in supporting women in management positions. Members strive to be professional, dynamic, open-minded and committed in all aspects of their professional and personal lives.  With networking, education and mentoring in focus, WISTA seeks to enhance members’ competence and empower career success. 

As a networking association, WISTA’s goal is to advance the interests of women in the maritime industry, through the exchange of contacts and experiences.  What begin in 1974 as a UK Christmas luncheon of women tanker brokers has grown to an international organization of over 2100 members in 36 countries and counting.   Although geographically spread out, WISTA members stay connected digitally via our web page ( ), Twitter, Instagram #WISTAGRAM, Facebook, LinkedIn and the Hashtag #WISTA.