CEO Spotlight: Sven-Olof Lindblad
How Sven-Olof Lindblad turned an innate passion into a modern exploration.
By Dave G. Houser
Sven-Olof Lindblad, founder and president of Lindblad Expeditions, was born to explore.
Born in Switzerland in 1951, he was the only son of renowned adventure-travel pioneer Lars-Eric Lindblad, who also fathered eco-tourism and led the first non-scientific group tours to Antarctica (1966), Galapagos (1967), and many other exotic regions of the world, from Arctic Svalbard to Easter Island.
Sven-Olof Lindblad Visits Lindblad Cove in Antarctica
From an early age, Sven traveled extensively with his father, developing an inherent passion to discover the most remote and pristine places on the planet. As a young man, he spent six years in East Africa — largely in the Serengeti region — where he developed his skills as a wildlife photographer, worked as an expedition guide, and assisted filmmakers on a documentary about the destruction of African rainforests. This period of time was instrumental in molding the fundamentals of Sven’s future in the travel industry — and his role as one of the world’s most active and influential environmentalists.
“If I had to name one spot on earth that has most nourished my spirit and influenced my destiny,” says Sven, “it would be the Serengeti, which imbued me with the feeling of truly belonging to the natural world.”
Road to Success
Lars was an explorer at heart and came to the United States from Sweden in 1958 intent on mounting his own expeditions. Lacking the resources to do so, he decided to get involved in the travel business….
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