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

  • Rinie van Meurs
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Dutch

Rinie van Meurs has been an expedition leader since 1989, leading hundreds of expeditions all over the polar regions. The Arctic island of Spitsbergen, the largest in the Svalbard archipelago, is as familiar to him as his own back yard.

After he finished his education in forestry management and nature conservation, Rinie traveled the world to photograph and study wildlife, living for almost a year in the Falklands.

Many of his photographs have been published in magazines and photography books.

Rinie has also written several books about the polar regions, including a coffee table book about areas that are off the beaten track.

  • Florence Kuyper
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: Dutch

Florence is a world traveler with a passion for the polar regions, remote nature, deserts, history, and nomadic peoples.

  • Laurence Dyke
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: British

Laurence is from Cornwall, in the far southwest of the UK, and grew up on the coast, never far from water and boats.

Read an interview here >
  • Katja Riedel
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: German
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  • Jan Belgers
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Martin Berg
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: Swedish
  • Beau Pruneau
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Canadian
  • Christian Engelke
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: German
  • Mariela Cornejo
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: Argentinian
  • Philipp Schaudy
  • Function: Expedition leader
  • Nationality: Austrian
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  • Birgit Lutz
  • Function: Expedition Leader
  • Nationality: German
  • Ali Liddle
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: British
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  • Sara Jenner
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: British
  • Adam Turner
  • Function: Expedition leader and guide
  • Nationality: British
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Activity staff

  • Michael Green
  • Function: Dive Team Leader and Advisor
  • Nationality: British

Michael began diving in 1980, training with the Royal Navy in Portsmouth Harbour.

After leaving the Navy, he continued to dive mainly around the UK, diving wrecks and always looking for a new story.

He is qualified as a dive instructor with BSAC and PADI and is certified to operate Drager Dolphin and Buddy Inspiration rebreathers.

Michael has worked for Oceanwide Expeditions for five years and enjoys giving divers a safe and exploratory experience in the polar regions.

Michael’s biggest tip for polar divers is to slow down, look around, and enjoy the environment.

He looks forward to enjoying it with you.

  • Paul Donovan
  • Function: Kayak Leader & Advisor
  • Nationality: British

Paul was born and brought up in the valleys of South Wales. He began kayaking and climbing at the age of 14, thanks to opportunities in school.

  • Henrik Enckell
  • Function: Dive Team Leader & Advisor
  • Nationality: Swedish

Henrik is an experienced dive leader, rebreather instructor trainer, and one of the first dive masters to bring tourists diving in Antarctica.

Captains

  • 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.

A beach guard by the age of 16, Ernesto’s favorite sport when he was young was swimming. When he finished high school, he moved to Puerto Montt, one of the most important ports in Chile. There he started his studies to become a merchant marine officer.

By his graduation in 1991, he’d already begun to sail on different vessels around Puerto Montt.

Ernesto became first officer of Antarctic Dream in 2005, beginning by navigating in Antarctica and later the Arctic. In 2011 he obtained the rank of captain, and in 2015 he was chosen as the best officer of the Chilean merchant navy.

Ernesto became a captain for Oceanwide Expeditions on Ortelius in 2013.

When he’s not working, Ernesto loves to travel around Chile with his family. He enjoys scuba diving, swimming, cycling, and photography, which has become his favorite hobby.

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.

  • Remmert Koster
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Dutch

Remmert Koster was born in the Netherlands, and from a young age he was convinced he would become a captain.

  • Arthur Yakovlev
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Russian
  • Alexander Schmidt
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: German
  • Evgeny Levakov
  • Function: Captain
  • Nationality: Russian
Read more >

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
  • Rowan Keur
  • Function: Reservations
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Geert Kroes
  • Function: Art Director
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Sebastiaan Schijf
  • Function: Financial Controller
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Mellany van der Hulst
  • Function: Marketing & Inhouse Design
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Franklin Braeckman
  • Function: Marketing & Sales Manager
  • Nationality: Belgian
  • Grace Vidal
  • Function: Reservations, North-America
  • Nationality: American
  • Elza Back
  • Function: Account Assistant
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Adam Turner
  • Function: Field Operations Manager
  • Nationality: British
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  • Erik Hageman
  • Function: CFO
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Nyrée Siereveld-Verstraete
  • Function: Account Assistant
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Ko de Korte
  • Function: Consultant
  • Nationality: Dutch
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  • Gabi Merten
  • Function: Reservations for the German speaking market
  • Nationality: German
  • Florian J. Piper
  • Function: Arctic Program Coordinator
  • Nationality: German
  • Michel van Gessel
  • Function: CEO
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Femke Wolfert
  • Function: Staffing Manager
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Iris van Zalinge
  • Function: HR & Staffing
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Loraine van Huizen
  • Function: Internet Marketeer
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Ingrid van de Loo
  • Function: Food & Beverage Manager for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Sietse Vonk
  • Function: Ship Operations for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Toto Vermue
  • Function: Reservations
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Piet Vink
  • Function: Senior Technical Manager for Marine Services
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Maria del Pilar Fernandez
  • Function: International Sales Manager
  • Nationality: Chilean
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  • Ad van Bokhoven
  • Function: Finance
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Andreas Diesing
  • Function: Key Account Manager for the German speaking countries
  • Nationality: German
  • Mark van der Hulst
  • Function: COO
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Marina Joglar
  • Function: Reservations, North-America
  • Nationality: American
  • Matt Cutts
  • Function: Senior Content Writer
  • Nationality: American
  • Majanda Fens
  • Function: Reservations Manager
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Marie Rose Porreca
  • Function: Reservations, North-America
  • Nationality: American
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