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Member Profile: Julia Dimon

Julia Dimon is co-host of Word Travels, a 39-episode TV series broadcast nationally on OLN in Canada and internationally on National Geographic in over 45 countries worldwide. This show follows the real lives of two top travel writers as they jet set around the world, under pressure and under deadline. Co-creator, associate producer, co-writer and co-host of Word Travels, Julia Dimon has just finished filming the second series, set to air in January 2009.

Julia is a nationally syndicated columnist for METRO NEWS published across Toronto, Vancouver, Ottawa, Calgary, Halifax and Edmonton. Since early 2005, her travel column, Travel Junkie, has appeared every Wednesday in newspapers across Canada. Her column is also translated and appears monthly across Metro International, the "world's largest global newspaper" with 23.1 million readers.

Julia's writing career began at the age of 12, with a monthly movie-review column for the Toronto Star, Canada's largest daily newspaper. Julia's Flicks was regularly published in the Star for over six years. From movie reviews, Julia moved into travel features. For four years, she wrote a monthly travel series for the Toronto Star, called "Confessions of a Backpacker" before she became a weekly columnist for Metro.

Julia worked as a videojournalist for CBC online, crafting and hosting pieces on everything from professional pillow-fighting championships, to the politicized "Freegan" youth movement. While travelling around the world, Julia produced current affairs pieces that aired across Canada on CBC Newsworld, Canada's most recognized news source. Among them: Squatting in Amsterdam, Hip Hop in Tanzania, and Black Panther in Africa

At 28 years old, she has travelled to over 60 countries, across conflict zones in five continents. She's danced with pygmies in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, partied with exiled Black Panther Revolutionaries in Tanzania, lived as a Buddhist monk in Korea, survived a survival course in the jungles of Belize, wrestled with indigenous Cholitas in Bolivia, toured genocide memorials in Rwanda, made lip-plates with the Mursi women of Southern Ethiopia and spent a night of "torture" in a Latvian prison.

From the depths of the Great Barrier Reef to the top of Machu Picchu, she's hiked with silverback gorillas in Uganda, snorkeled with whale sharks in Mozambique, climbed The Great Wall of China, dog-sledded in Greenland, camel trekked in Jordan, slept with lions in the Serengeti, snacked on local delicacies such as silk worm, goat brain, six-inch scorpions, snake blood and severed human toe.

Julia is a young woman making a difference in the world through the field of travel journalism. She has traveled around the globe three times, working to create awareness about social and women's issues across cultures. She has followed her dreams to become one of the youngest, top female travel writers. Her work focuses on ethical, responsible travel, with a quirky cultural twist.

While many travel pieces focus on mainstream sanitized tourist attractions, Julia has pushed the boundaries of the genre, backpacking solo through off-the-beaten path locations, (through Mozambique, India, South Africa, Cambodia and Jordan) to bring back compelling stories. Her work empowers readers to see a human side to some of the world's most "dangerous" places…especially for a young, blond woman in her twenties.

In February 2009, Julia joined the likes of Samantha Brown, Arthur Frommers, Andrew Zimmern and Rick Steves, appearing on a travel writing panel at The New York Times Travel Show. The NY Times Travel Show is the largest consumer and travel trade show produced in the United States, featuring more than 500 tourism boards and 23,000 attendees.

Julia has been featured as a travel personality on Arthur Frommer's radio show, syndicated across 100 radio stations throughout the US, as well as major Canadian media outlets (CBC, Canada AM, CTV Newsnet, CTS, Rogers Daytime, the National Post, Globe and Mail, Toronto Sun and others.)

Born and raised in Toronto, she is a graduate from McGill University, with a BA in English. An accomplished photographer, Julia spent two years working as a freelance fashion photographer for the popular teen magazine ElleGirl.

She's the editor of The Travel Junkie, www.thetraveljunkie.ca, a popular online magazine for independent travelers.

To check out Julia's articles, photos and videos visit www.juliadimon.com

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NYWIFT programs, screenings and events are supported, in part, by grants from New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and New York State Council on the Arts