The Culture-ist is an online magazine for people who passionately care about the greater world around them. Our mission is to spread the word about innovators, entrepreneurs, activists, artisans and philanthropists who spend their days making life just a little bit better for others. We believe nothing breaks down cultural barriers like a good meal, or journeying through another country in the footsteps of a local (so you’ll find inspiring, experiential stories of travel and food). To ‘Be the Change’ we must first value and respect ourselves, which can be practiced through yoga, healthy eating and strong social bonds. We care about the planet, so we write about sustainability, climate change and any issues that threaten the welfare of the environment. Our goal is to report on the aspects of culture that truly matter, and the irony, humor and hope that go with it.
Maria Russo, Co-Founder, Editor
Maria is a writer and editor who has worked in print and broadcast media at companies such as: MTV Networks, Harper’s Bazaar, Warner Bros. and WOR News Talk Radio. She received her BA in Print Journalism from American University in Washington D.C., and currently attends New York University pursuing postgraduate studies in Journalism/Editing. Her work has appeared on National Geographic, BBC America, The Huffington Post, People, Stylelist and AFAR among others. Russo is a philanthropy buff and avid traveler who loves natural wonders, cultural food experiences and finding the remaining places on earth left undisturbed. Follow Maria on Twitter @MariaCultureist
Anthony Russo, Brand Strategy, Sales & Partnerships
Anthony has spent the past seven years working in the international debt capital markets. He is an active philanthropist involved in organizations focusing on microfinance and providing rural communities access to clean water. Anthony is currently pursuing an MBA in Marketing and Global Business Strategy at Rutgers University. Follow Anthony on Twitter @AJCultureist & @TheCultureist
Angelica Bamundo, Graphic Designer
Angelica is an illustrator, designer, and reanimated ghoul from New York who is responsible for The Culture-ist’s branding and promotional imagery. Legend has it that on clear nights when Saturn is aligned with Alpha Centauri, she can be found studying illustration at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Although this is a subject of great speculation, leading paranormal experts agree: “Those among us who are more sensitive to psychic energies can clearly see her drawing many otherworldly things, logos and graphic novel concepts included. When the dark spirits are feeling particularly benevolent, she might even be seen smacking at buttons on an iMac, according to an eyewitness account from 1892.” The most convincing piece of evidence comes in the form of her purported email address, [email protected], and her final resting place/website, abamundo.carbonmade.com, both of which should be cautiously used to contact her at a seance.
Margaret Barthel, Women’s Issues/Politics/Culture
Margaret Barthel recently graduated from Smith College with a degree in English Language and Literature. Among other things, she’s a reader, writer, history buff, and outdoors enthusiast with deep interests in feminism, politics, and the environment. A semester abroad studying at Oxford University and exploring continental Europe, in addition to plenty of quirky family vacations, are to blame for her love of travel. Find more of her work at margaretbarthel.wordpress.com.
Katherine Mayhew, Women’s Issues/Travel/Culture
Katherine is a junior at Princeton University, where she is majoring in English Literature and minoring in Spanish Language and Culture. She is also a member of the women’s varsity crew team and an intern at the university’s women’s center. Even though now she’s indefinitely based on the East Coast, her Pacific Northwest roots are strong–she loves hiking, coffee, good books and rainy days (not necessarily in that order)
Aimee Millwood, Travel/Food/Culture
Aimee Millwood is a writer with wanderlust who currently lives in Hanoi, Vietnam. She graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she received her BA in Literature with an emphasis in creative writing. She believes everyone has a story to tell and is interested in the use of personal narrative to give voice to people whose stories are not always heard. She credits growing up in both Hawaii and Georgia with her constant desire to explore the concept of home and how places shape who we become. Although she has spent the past two years traveling in South America, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia, she believes a physical trip is not the only means of travel – at times, just the wind on your face during a long drive or the scent of a campfire can rejuvenate the soul. You can check out more of her work on her blog, www.stopdroptravel.com.
Daphne Auza, Small Biz/Culture
Based in Los Angeles, Daphne Auza is a current student at Occidental College pursuing a major in English and Comparative Literary Studies. Her interests lie in travel, poems, and the intersection between the arts and social justice, but her curiosity extends far beyond those realms as well. She likes to think that many of her passions are founded on her seemingly insatiable restlessness. You can check out her daily musings and other writings at candidkandu.tumblr.com.
Ariana Chomitz, Food/Culture
Ariana Chomitz is a writer, photographer, and traveler from Washington, DC. She graduated from Kenyon College, where she received a B.A. in Anthropology and experimented with her passion for digital storytelling in both academic research and personal expression. A strong proponent of experiential education, Ariana spent her gap year in India, studied abroad in Indonesia and Brazil, and currently works for a high school study abroad organization as a program leader and social media creator. She believes that travel should challenge, that art should delight and inform, that people will surprise you, and that bubble baths should cap off the best and the worst days.
Caroline King, Social Media
Caroline King is a writer based in Buffalo, NY and is always looking for her next adventure. She enjoys traveling the word and writing about her life experiences. She loves pursuing the web for inspirational and meaningful content, but often finds herself getting distracted by watching compilations of people falling on YouTube and planning dream trips on travel sites. When she’s not writing or cruising the internet, she enjoys taking bike rides, reading, watching hockey, theatre, trying new food, and having good times with good people. Check out more of her writings on her blog, http://kingsreflections.wordpress.com
Kendra Bailey Morris