MEET OUR CHAPERONES

We Want to Help You Travel Safely

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AIMEE PUTNAM

Aimee is a Houston-native who graduated from Louisiana State University with a degree in Elementary Education. She’s taught Kindergarten at The Fay School for the past 8 years. Traveling is one of Aimee’s favorite hobbies! Whether she’s revisiting a favorite spot or venturing somewhere new, she loves to experience everything each city has to offer. Summer 2022 will be Aimee’s 5th year leading a Third Rock Travel Group and she’s thrilled to be back.

MEGHAN MURPHY

Meghan Murphy is a native Houstonian and a graduate of Texas Tech University. Meghan taught for seven years before becoming an administrator at Kolter Elementary. Meghan enjoys exploring new cities, cultures, and trying new foods. She is thrilled to travel and spend her fifth summer with Third Rock Travel!

CULLUM BOLIN

Cullum is a lifelong Houstonian, attending St. John’s, Kinkaid, and Lamar. She graduated from St. Edwards University after studying abroad on Semester at Sea. An avid traveler, Cullum has ventured from Russia to the Amazon, from Europe to Africa. Having been a participant on a Third Rock Travel backpacking adventure in 2012, she is well prepared for the demands of the trip. Cullum says she can’t wait for her third year chaperoning in 2022.

JENNIFER GREENE

Jennifer Greene was born and raised in Houston, Texas. After graduating from The University of Arizona, she moved to Los Angeles for 6 years. She currently works as the Communications Associate for the Houston Ballet Nutcracker Market and has been in that role for almost 3 years. She has traveled all over the country as well as Mexico, England, France, Israel and the Caribbean. She is excited to join Third Rock for the first time this summer and is looking forward to an unforgettable trip!

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BEAU PASCHALL

Beau Paschall is a native born Texan who graduated from Colorado State University with fellow chaperone Michael Montondon. He worked for the cell phone accessory company OtterBox for 5 years and recently left to travel around Europe and ultimately start a career in movie production. This is his first year with Third Rock.

MICHAEL MONTONDON

Whether it’s harvesting Sauvignon Blanc in New Zealand, driving across Morocco just to see a sunset over the Sahara or living with Balinese priests, Michael has a thirst for new perspectives, connections and experiences.  

Since graduating from Colorado State University with a finance degree Michael has traveled all over Europe, Asia and South America.

He now lives in Los Angeles where he started the nonprofit, Bags Into Beds, which uses plastic bags as a plush stuffing in beds for the homeless (www.bagsintobeds.org). When he’s not growing the nonprofit you’ll either find him rock climbing or doing improv at the Groundlings School. 

SEAN LAUGHLIN

Sean Laughlin graduated from Eckerd College in St Petersburg, Florida, with his B.A. in Environmental Studies and a Biology and Coastal Management minor. After graduating, Sean spent 5 months in Mexico and completed his dive-master certification, then moved to Thailand for ten months to study king cobras. He remote camped in Madagascar for the summer of 2017 to study reptiles and spent the 2017-18 school year teaching environmental education. In the summer of 2018, he led a National Geographic Student Expedition to Bali, then spent a year teaching field studies in the UAE. Sean spent the summer of 2019 guiding students deep in the Guyana amazon as lead herpetologist.  These jobs have taken him across the world to explore some of the most fantastic geology, wildlife and cultures on the planet. 2022 will be his 2nd summer with Third Rock Travel.

MILLS WITMER

Mills is a native Houstonian who attended Memorial High School before graduating from Ole Miss with a degree in psychology. She currently works in Houston with her mother as an interior designer. She was a camp counselor for 6 years at Camp Longhorn, where she discovered her love for leadership and adventure. Her step father is originally from Copenhagen and resided in London for 25 years, where her step siblings currently live. She has traveled with her family to the Nordic countries in addition to other European countries and has gotten to see firsthand how the locals live. She enjoys going to museums, finding great restaurants and of course, traveling. She is so excited to join Third Rock this summer and embark on some new adventures with an awesome group of young adults! 

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ALEX KERENSKY

Alex Kerensky is a Houston Native having attended River Oaks Baptist and Lamar High School.  After graduating from Ohio Wesleyan University, she worked as an educator at River Oaks Baptist School from 2014 - 2019.  Though she loved spending time with her students and teaching English and earth science to 6th and 7th graders, she decided to take the 2019-2020 year off to travel.  Alex spent the last three months of the year traveling and working in Japan, navigating cultural and language differences.  She had the time of her life, and she looks forward to traveling and sharing adventures with her group this summer!  

SERGIO GIRALT

Sergio Giralt is an MBA/MA candidate of the Wharton School and Lauder Institute class of 2020. Before attending business school, Sergio worked for four years as a consultant at Deloitte & Touche in Houston, TX. He holds a CPA certificate from the State of Texas and a Master of Science in Accounting from the University of Trinity in San Antonio, TX, where he also attended undergrad. On campus and off campus, Sergio enjoys many hobbies. He recently participated in the Andes Leadership Venture, applying his experience as an avid trekker and Eagle Scout to further develop his leadership skills. While in Philadelphia, Sergio has intentionally immersed himself in the city’s atmosphere.

PATRICK CONNOLLY

Patrick was born and raised in Houston, TX and is a graduate of Strake Jesuit. His first taste of travel came in the summer of 2008 when I spent 6 weeks in Eastern Europe. He hasn't looked back since. College brought him to Louisiana State University where he graduated with a degree in International Studies. During his Junior year at LSU, he spent 6 months studying in Vigo, Spain. After graduation, he went back to Europe for 3 months and completed the Camino de Santiago. Patrick worked in commercial real estate for a time until he packed up and headed to Southeast Asia for 4 months. He currently lives in Seattle. This will be Patrick's third trip with Third Rock.

MEGAN PILEWSKI

Megan is originally from Chicago where she got a degree in History from Loyola University Chicago.  She escaped the never-ending winters and currently teaches high school economics in Austin, TX.  A college study abroad program brought her to Rome, Italy and solidified her love of travel. She can be found exploring new countries and cities every chance she gets…one of the perks of the teacher schedule! This is her first Third Rock trip, but she has travelled extensively throughout Europe and Asia and is excited to share the joys and learning experiences of travel with her group this summer.  

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JORDAN KENDALL

Jordan is originally from Kentucky. He attended Lindsey Wilson College where I played soccer for four years and earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration. He is currently employed as the Director of education at a prominent environmental education institute where he teaches, explores with and manages about 1000 kids a season from all backgrounds and age ranges. He has recently returned from a 6-month stint as an English teacher in Vietnam. While there, he explored all through northern and southern Vietnam as well as backpacked a large portion of southeast Asia (Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia). He has also made many stops all over Europe. Jordan is looking forward to this opportunity of exploration and discovery next summer.

A.K. CRAWFORD

Ann Kathryn was raised in Mississippi and graduated from Ole Miss in 2016. After college she moved to Houston and met her now husband Marshall. Ann Kathryn teaches first grade at ROB and loves to travel any chance she gets. This will be her second Third Rock trip as a chaperone. She has traveled throughout Europe, Mexico and the Caribbean and cannot wait for an amazing summer! 

ADAM KAIN

A native Houstonian, Adam spent a few years as a swim coach/student until graduating from University of Houston Downtown in 2018. After graduating he began looking for opportunities out West and has been working as an activity guide for a Wyoming ranch, where he spent his free time fishing and climbing. Home-schooled growing up he was able to spend long periods traveling to Europe and Mexico and is excited to bring that experience to his first season with Third Rock.

MAX LEE

Max is an Ohio native, having attended The Ohio State University to earn his Bachelor’s in Political Science. Needing a break from the grey, wintry skies, Max moved to Austin in 2011 to attend UT Austin where he earned a Master’s in Education. For the past 6 years, Max has been a high school social studies teacher in Leander, Texas. Max enjoys exploring the outdoors and national parks as well as navigating new cities and all of their experiences. This is his first year with Third Rock and he is excited for a great adventure across Europe. 

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SCOTT WILLSON

Scott grew up in Houston, attending St. John's School. From there, he went to college at Trinity University in San Antonio and majored in history and Spanish (and picked up an art history minor while studying abroad). His love of travel began while studying abroad in Spain and doing a Eurorail trip with a few friends. He taught English in Beijing for eighteen months before setting off to explore Southeast Asia. He ultimately wound up in Bangkok, Thailand after a year of exploring Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Northern Thailand via motorcycle. After over four years being away from the US, I wanted to come back to Texas and was accepted to a Master's of Education program at UT Austin (however, I did carve out six months to go and teach SCUBA diving on a Thai island). Scott now teaches at St. Stephen's Episcopal School in Austin. This will be Scott’s fifth year with Third Rock Travel.

CESAR GIRALT

A graduate of Strake Jesuit and Trinity University, César currently works as a senior managing consultant at Pariveda Solutions. Highlights of his many travels have been his trips with his brother to Southeast Asia and Japan, discovering his father's roots in Cuba, sailing Croatia and the Caribbean, and being in Moscow to witness Russia beat Spain in the greatest upset in World Cup history. His approach to travel is characterized by diligent planning at home paired with a calm willingness to adapt once on the road. 2019 will be his fourth summer leading a Third Rock group.

SERGIO PALACIOS

Sergio was born and raised in Texas and fluent in Spanish. He grew up in Madisonville, and graduated from Texas State University in San Marcos. He is currently employed as a broker specializing in retirement services in Austin. Sergio is extremely passionate about traveling, specifically backpacking. He's been to Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua, Cuba, Honduras, Jamaica, the Yucatán peninsula in Mexico and all over Europe. Sergio will be taking his fourth trip with Third Rock Travel next summer.

KELLI BUNCH

Kelli is a native of Houston who spent a summer abroad in Florence, Italy to learn authentic preparation of Florentine cuisine. With an appetite to bolster her culinary skillset, Kelli followed her dream of attending culinary school at the Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena, California. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America, Kelli put her skills to the test embarking on a journey through some of Houston’s finest kitchens and premier catering companies. She also had the great privilege of working as personal chef to the late President George H.W. Bush and the late First Lady Barbara Bush. Kelli is looking forward to her first trip with Third Rock.

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STEPHEN HEBERT

Stephen is a native of southeast Texas and a graduate of both the University of Texas at Austin and Harvard University. As a chaperone, Stephen has led trips for students to Bhutan, China, Ghana, Morocco, the Dominican Republic, and all over the United States. He is excited to take groups to Europe with Third Rock Travel! In addition to teaching English and World Religions at the John Cooper School in The Woodlands, Stephen is a published author. When he’s not reading, he’s probably writing. If he’s not reading or writing, then he’s probably playing golf or throwing batting practice for his son. If he’s not doing any of those things, he’s probably embarked on some new adventure.

DANNY LEWIS

DanNY Lewis is a home grown talent that currently teaches World History to 9th and 10th graders at The John Cooper School. His love for travel ignited his senior year in high school on a trip to Europe only made possible by a tremendous teacher and person who is still a hero of his today. Daniel has led school groups to most countries across Europe, South and Latin America and looks to continue his travels with Third Rock! He has a lovely wife who is also a teacher, two daughters, one son, and two dogs; yes, life is full throttle at all times! Life will take you anywhere if you let it...so let us do just that together!

DUSTIN HOGARD

Dustin was raised on a small ranch in the small town of Madisonville, TX (you might know it as the home of the Bucky's on I-45 between Houston and Dallas) but then went to the "big city" of Austin, TX to attend UT. After college, he traveled extensively as an outdoor adventure guide, and over the past few years has been self-employed with Wazoo Survival Gear, which recently launched The Cache Belt on Kickstarter. This will be Dustin’s fifth year to guide a trip with Third Rock.

BLAKE GOLDBERG

After graduating Texas A&M University in 2015, Blake found himself traveling the world for a few years from New Zealand to the Amazon Jungle. During this time he fell in love with traveling and most of all camping. He got a job as a guide taking people to America’s National Parks teaching them how to camp as well as working as a guide on cruise ships. Blake then decided he wanted to take camping to the professional level and joined the United States Air Force to become a Survival Instructor teaching Pilots and Special Forces members to survive in the wilderness. He is currently still serving in the Air Force but has not lost his desire to travel. This will be Blake’s fourth year with Third Rock Travel.