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Katina Athanasiou moves to Celebrity as VP sales, Joe Leon steps up at Silversea

Katina Athanasiou becomes VP sales, the Americas, for Celebrity Cruises, and Joe Leon, VP field sales at Silversea, takes on additional reports
Katina Athanasiou is joining Celebrity Cruises as VP sales, the Americas, with Joe Leon taking on expanded sales oversight at Silversea Cruises.

Athanasiou fills a role previously held for many years by Keith Lane, who moved to SVP hotel operations at Celebrity in June.

She has served as SVP sales at Silversea for the past year and before that was chief sales officer at Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings following various other sales management roles for the NCLH brands.

Reports to Dondra Ritzenthaler

At Celebrity, Athanasiou will be responsible for driving the sales strategy across trade booking channels in the Americas, including field sales, national accounts, inside sales, Latin America sales, sales communication, training and development, and sales support. She starts Jan. 3 and will report to Dondra Ritzenthaler, SVP sales, the Americas.  

'Katina has a proven track record in the travel and hospitality industry, and she really understands how to drive business in the Americas,' Ritzenthaler said. 'Her experience and knowledge will be an invaluable asset as our fleet grows and offers a variety of options to sail to every continent.'

Silversea reorganizes trade sales

Following Athanasiou's move, Joe Leon will lead Silversea’s trade sales.

Leon, who joined Silversea as VP field sales, North America in 2016 and has more than 20 years of travel industry sales experience, will now oversee national accounts, field sales and expedition sales.

His reports include Christian Sierralta, who will continue to lead national accounts as VP; Rachel Woodward, recently promoted to senior director of field sales, who oversees 10 area sales directors; and Karl Kannstadter, senior director of expedition sales, who added global responsibility in October.

The inside sales team, led by Marcus Kenny, director of business development and agency sales for the Americas, will continue reporting directly to Leon.

Mark Conroy thanks Athanasiou

Mark Conroy, managing director, the Americas, stressed Silversea's continued support for travel advisors. He also congratulated Athanasiou on her new role and thanked her for her leadership, 'which has led to the evolution of one of the industry’s most talented teams.'