Ben was raised in New Jersey (he claims there are parts of Jersey that are absolutely beautiful, but he admits that he didn't live in those parts) and received his higher education at Skidmore College in Saratoga, New York. Ben's first short-lived job was teaching at a boarding school in New Hampshire where,
he confesses, he was a dreadful teacher, but he and the kids had a grand time playing soccer in the yard and listening to music in the dorm.
During his one-year teaching career, Ben took a group of students on a ski and outdoor adventure to Colorado and knew immediately that he was going to pursue a career combining travel and nature. Not given to working for others (his experience with the headmaster of the prep school was a disaster, for him and for the headmaster both), in 1984 Ben decided to pursue his dreams independently. He managed to save $600 driving a garbage truck at a New Jersey amusement
park and invested that undersized savings to produce a small brochure advertising skiing and adventure trips, doing the typing (on an antiquated standard typewriter) and photocopying himself. It wasn't long before the International Fund for Animal Welfare (the world's largest animal welfare organization) put out a feeler to find a young and ambitious adventure travel company to help them develop a seal-watching tourist industry to replace the harp seal hunt in eastern Canada.
As Ben was living on the floor of his brother's apartment in New York City and stealing his brother's change for subway fare to get to work, there was no company
more ambitious than Natural Habitat Adventures, which, at the time, consisted of Ben alone. In the thirty-plus years since, Ben has grown Natural Habitat Adventures to become a global leader in nature travel, offering exciting adventures around the world. He himself has journeyed to dozens of countries in search of spectacular nature experiences… and a good time, whenever possible. Aside from growing a meaningful company that provides “The World’s Greatest Nature Expeditions," Ben's professional ambition is to utilize adventure travel to build support for the fight against climate change. When he's not working, which is rarely (ask the staff who regularly get 1 a.m. emails), Ben plays and coaches soccer, rides his mountain bike, skis, drinks beer, smokes Cuban cigars, and enjoys time with his family.