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Maya Angelou cruises with Olivia Travel

Noted author, historian and activist named keynote speaker on Olivia’s Equality and Leadership Summit cruise

Maya Angelou. Credit: Dwight Carter.

Maya Angelou, celebrated author, educator, actor, historian, filmmaker and civil rights activist (among a longer list of accomplishments) will be the keynote speaker on Olivia Travel’s floating Equality and Leadership Summit in February.

The summit will take place during a seven-day eastern Caribbean cruise, February 1 to 8, 2014, aboard the Holland America’s MS Westerdam.

Most Westerdam staterooms have ocean views and many have private verandahs. Restaurants range from casual to elegant; ship features include a luxurious spa, fitness centre, culinary arts centre, casino and shops.

“This year we have already seen groundbreaking progress for LGBT rights and equality, and we felt the time was right to hold a gathering with influential women whose words and actions carry a powerful message of leadership and success,” says Judy Dlugacz, Olivia Travel’s founder and president.

“By having Dr Angelou lead the summit as our keynote speaker, followed by messages of strength from our other invited guests, we are expecting that the 1,900 women who will be taking part in the cruise will leave invigorated and inspired to take on the world in new ways,” Dlugacz says.

Angelou is often celebrated as one of the most renowned and influential voices of this generation. She will join a roster of more than a dozen impressive women guests, including civil rights pioneer Edie Windsor, whose court challenge led to the recent defeat of the Defense of Marriage Act; Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida Congresswoman and chair of the Democratic National Committee; and Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights.

Entertainment for the summit will include the Grammy-winning Indigo Girls and comedians Judy Gold and Karen Williams.

Olivia Travel started in 1990 and found its niche specializing in chartered cruises and vacations (from resorts, to adventure, to luxury) targeted to lesbian travellers and their female friends. Rather than sharing a large ship or resort with other travel groups, Olivia is known for booking entire ships and resorts exclusively for its clientele.

For more information on the 2014 Equality and Leadership Summit cruise or other Olivia offerings, visit Olivia Travel.