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Our staff

Oceanwide staff

The polar regions are what we do. From our expert expedition guides to our impeccable crew to our diversely skilled office staff, the OEX team is all about giving you the utmost experience of the Arctic, Antarctica, and the sub-Antarctic. Seasoned passengers of our own epic voyages, we bring to the table not only a love of the exotic polar world but also a combined wealth of expertise unrivaled by any other polar tour operator. Join us on one of our adventurous voyages, and let us share with you all there is to see, do, and explore in Earth’s most remote frontiers.

Expedition staff

  • Sarah Gerats
  • Function: Expedition guide
  • Nationality: Dutch

Sarah Gerats grew up in Belgium but lost her heart to the Arctic at an early age, first experiencing it as an exchange student at the Academy of Arts in Iceland.

In 2012 she took a trip to Spitsbergen and ended up extending her visit indefinitely. Sarah now works as an expedition leader and guide aboard sailing vessels both in the Arctic and Antarctica.

Sarah guides with enthusiasm and knows much about the archipelago’s terrain, wildlife, and history. Her main focus is the stories connected to Svalbard’s numerous locations as well as details about its rapidly changing landscape.

A year-round resident of Spitsbergen, Sarah knows the island’s daily life intimately and will make sure to tell you all about the darker months in the high north.

When not working at sea, you’ll find Sarah on her sailing boat along the Norwegian coast or on hiking-skiing trips around Svalbard. 

  • Christian Engelke
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: German

Since his first vacation to Norway in 1996, Christian Engelke has suffered from “Scandinavia fever.” Since then he has been exploring Norway, Sweden, and Greenland by foot, skis, and kayak.

  • Jordi Plana
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Spanish

Born in Spain, Jordi Plana studied marine science in the Canary Islands before completing a master’s degree in the same field at the University of Magallanes.

  • Phil Wickens
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: British
  • Jan Belgers
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Philipp Schaudy
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Austrian
Read more >
  • Beau Pruneau
  • Function: (Assistant) Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: Canadian
  • Rinie van Meurs
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Ali Liddle
  • Function: (Assistant) Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: British
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  • Birgit Lutz
  • Function: Expedition Leader
  • Nationality: German
  • Arjen Drost
  • Function: (Assistant) Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: Dutch
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Captains

  • Alexey Nazarov
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Russian

Alexey Nazarov was born in the Russian town of Arkhangelsk, the so-called Pomors Capital of the world. Since his childhood, he dreamed of being a sailor.

After finishing high school at 15, Alexey started his naval career in the oldest maritime college in Russia. He graduated in 1997 and three months later made his first Arctic voyage as third officer on a hydrographic research vessel.

Alexey worked in the Russian Arctic in heavy ice conditions for the next eight years, serving on nuclear icebreakers for various international scientific expeditions.

He started with Oceanwide Expeditions in 2000, and in 2012 was promoted to captain aboard m/v Plancius. Celebrating his 20th anniversary of polar sailing in 2017, Alexey loves working with passengers and spending time in polar waters.

Alexey is also passionate about hydrography and enjoys sharing what he’s learned. During his vacations, he likes to visit different countries and spend time with his wife and son. 

Read an interview here >
  • Ernesto Barria
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Chilean

Ernesto Barria was born in Santiago, Chile, into a family with strong bonds to the sea: His father, grandfather, and several uncles all share a love of the ocean.

Read an interview here >
  • Yury Marin
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Russian

Born in Rybinsk, Russia, Yury Marin began sailing on small sporting yachts at the age of nine. By age 16, he was already preparing for a life of sailing the world's rivers and seas.

  • Evgeny Levakov
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Russian
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  • Alexander Schmidt
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: German
  • Arthur Yakovlev
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Russian
  • Remmert Koster
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Dutch

Office

Head Office:
Phone: +31 (0)118 410 410
Fax: +31 (0)118 410 417
Email: info@oceanwide-expeditions.com
USA & Canada reservations:
Phone: +1 800 453 7245
Fax: +1 (0)281 749 8220
Email: usa@oceanwide-expeditions.com
  • Elza Back
  • Function: Account Assistant
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Iris van Zalinge
  • Function: HR & Staffing
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Gabi Merten
  • Function: Reservations for the German speaking market
  • Nationality: German
  • Mark van der Hulst
  • Function: COO
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Femke Wolfert
  • Function: Staffing Manager
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Erik Hageman
  • Function: CFO
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Marie Rose Porreca
  • Function: Reservations, North-America
  • Nationality: American
  • Mellany van der Hulst
  • Function: Marketing & Inhouse Design
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Maria del Pilar Fernandez
  • Function: International Sales Manager
  • Nationality: Chilean
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  • Sietse Vonk
  • Function: Ship Operations for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Ad van Bokhoven
  • Function: Finance
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Adam Turner
  • Function: Field Operations Manager
  • Nationality: British
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  • Nyrée Siereveld-Verstraete
  • Function: Account Assistant
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Wim Stander
  • Function: Technical Manager for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Matt Cutts
  • Function: Senior Content Writer
  • Nationality: American
  • Rowan Keur
  • Function: Reservations
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Majanda Fens
  • Function: Reservations Manager
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Natascha Wisse
  • Function: Operations Manager for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Loraine van Huizen
  • Function: Internet Marketeer
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Rima Deeb Granado
  • Function: Director of Sales, North-America
  • Nationality: American
  • Michel van Gessel
  • Function: CEO
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Ingrid van de Loo
  • Function: Food & Beverage Manager for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Toto Vermue
  • Function: Reservations
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Andreas Diesing
  • Function: Key Account Manager for the German speaking countries
  • Nationality: German
  • Sebastiaan Schijf
  • Function: Financial Controller
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Franklin Braeckman
  • Function: Marketing & Sales Manager
  • Nationality: Belgian
  • Grace Vidal
  • Function: Reservations, North-America
  • Nationality: American
  • Geert Kroes
  • Function: Art Director
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Marina Joglar
  • Function: Reservations, North-America
  • Nationality: American
  • Florian J. Piper
  • Function: Arctic Program Coordinator
  • Nationality: German
  • Dorita de Bruijn
  • Function: HR Manager
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Piet Vink
  • Function: Senior Technical Manager for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Ko de Korte
  • Function: Consultant
  • Nationality: Dutch
Read more >