Meet our talented, wonderful Travel Consultants

Steve Fried
Agency Director

Steve is a veteran of nearly 30 cruises on 8 different lines and visits Walt Disney World® Resort, on average, once per month. He is a NYC native and he and his family relocated to Southwest Florida in late 2011 and immediately became Annual Passholders.

 

Steve’s first visit to Walt Disney World was in 1972 although he doesn’t have much recollection of that trip other than being amazed seeing the Monorail running through the Contemporary and being very scared on Snow White’s Scary Adventures. He became a Travel Consultant as an extension of his love of Disney and his desire to serve as his clients’ advocate. Despite being there so frequently, he wishes it could be even more often, so he gets to live vicariously through the people he helps to send there. He has a deep love for the entire planning process and feels that meticulous planning isn’t about making a vacation too contrived, but rather as a way to manage budget and achieve as many vacation goals as possible.

 

At Walt Disney World, his favorite Value resort is Pop Century; his favorite Moderate resort is Caribbean Beach; and his favorite Deluxe resort is the Polynesian Village. Besides resorts, he has a love of Splash Mountain and Haunted Mansion and takes Disney dining very seriously. Besides being a regular attendee of the annual Epcot Food and Wine Festival, Steve has an affinity for several different on property restaurants that includes breakfast at Crystal Palace, Cape May Cafe or Grand Floridian Cafe. He feels must do dinners are at ‘Ohana, Yachtsman, and his new favorite in the state of Florida…Morimoto Asia at Disney Springs. 

 

When he’s not at Disney or helping people get there, Steve has been an avid musician for 30 years. Although he rarely performs, he continues to write music and assists other artists with production. He is an obsessive fan of NFL football and his family greatly misses his attention for those 17 game Sundays.

Dawn Elliott
Senior Travel Consultant

Dawn currently lives in Kentucky but was born and raised in Indiana. You'll find her enjoying her free time by indulging in photography, scrapbooking, enjoying a good book, or rooting for her favorite football team! 

 

Dawn first fell in love with Disney at an early age. Her first trip to Walt Disney World was in 1976. Her most vivid memory from that trip was riding the monorail while watching the Electrical Water Pageant. Since 2000, she has had 11 trips to Walt Disney World and Disneyland under her belt and is always planning for more. She has never had the same trip twice and knows that she'll find something new to experience on every trip. She recently completed her first Disney Cruise and is eagerly anticipating her next!

 

As a graduate of the College of Disney Knowledge, Dawn is able to assist future Disney travelers plan their dream vacation to their favorite Disney destination. She's been a message board moderator for PassPorter for 3 years, as well as a peer reviewer for the PassPorter Guidebooks. As a frequent visitor to Walt Disney World, Dawn has had the opportunity to stay at all resort categories from value to deluxe during the lowest and high peak times of year. She believes that planning a Walt Disney World vacation is as fun as the actual trip and can provide suggestions to make your vacation as magical as ever.

 

Some of Dawn's favorite Walt Disney World attractions are Tower of Terror, Toy Story Midway Mania, Pirates of the Caribbean and Spaceship Earth. On every visit, she always makes sure to see SpectroMagic and Wishes in the Magic Kingdom. Her favorite dining spots are Crystal Palace, Le Cellier, and Teppan Edo. Her favorite value resort is All-Star Movies with its bigger-than-life icons; moderate resort is Port Orleans Riverside with the relaxed southern feel on the Bayou; and deluxe is Wilderness Lodge with the cozy fireplace in the lobby.

Sarah Mudd
Senior Lead Travel Consultant

Sarah is a stay-at-home mom of two (a pre-teen daughter and a preschool son!) who lives in central Texas.  Having been born in San Diego, California, Sarah visited Disneyland numerous times as a child and has a very special place in her heart for the original Magic Kingdom.  Her first visit to Walt Disney World was in 1996 while she was stationed with the Navy in Florida.  Since that first trip in 1996, she has made more day and overnight trips to the Orlando area than she can possibly count!


Thanks to her St. Louis native husband’s recent Navy service, her family had the pleasure of living in Florida (twice!), Maine, Virginia and ending in October 2012 on beautiful Whidbey Island in Washington state.  In that time they frequently traveled to visit family in St. Louis, Atlanta and parts of Oregon. During their moves from place to place, they have driven up and down the east and west coasts, across the southern U.S. and across the middle of the U.S. from the east to west coasts. They have visited many sites and cities from Bangor, Maine to Key West, Bellingham, WA to San Diego, Jacksonville to Los Angeles, as well as many National Parks from Maine’s Acadia to Washington’s Olympic.


Sarah’s favorite Walt Disney World attractions are Toy Story Midway Mania, Expedition Everest, Pirates of the Caribbean and Test Track.  Her favorite dining spots are Chef Mickey’s, 50’s Prime Time Cafe, and Teppan Edo.  Her favorite value resorts are Pop Century and All-Star Music (Disney's Art of Animation may be joining the list at some point!); moderate resort is Port Orleans Riverside; and deluxe is the Polynesian with its laid-back tropical feel.


Favorite Disneyland attractions are Alice in Wonderland, Space Mountain, (the original) Pirates of the Caribbean and Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye at Disneyland Park . . . Goofy's Sky School, Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue!, The Bakery Tour - hosted by Boudin Bakery (free sourdough bread samples!!!) and, though she hasn't been back yet since Cars Land has been completed, she KNOWS that Radiator Springs Racers would be a favorite at Disney California Adventure park!  Her favorite onsite Disney hotel is the Disneyland Hotel and favorite Good Neighbor hotels are the Carousel Inn and Suites, Best Western Park Place Inn & Suites, Candy Cane Inn and Howard Johnson Hotel (awesome pool/water play area here!).


 As a frequent visitor to both Disneyland and Walt Disney World, Sarah has had the opportunity to visit during the lowest and high peak times of year, as well as traveling as adults only, in groups as well as with kids ranging in age from infant to pre-teen. She believes that half the fun of a Disney trip is in the planning and is more than happy to provide suggestions to add more magic to your vacation!

Shellie Smith
Senior Lead Travel Consultant

Shellie lives in Clanton, Alabama where she serves the children of Chilton County as a school nurse.  Along with her husband and 3 children, she developed her love for Disney travel after making her first trip there in 2002 with Jacob and Anna.   Since then, she and Chris have added another child (Sam) and have traveled to Disney at least once a year in some capacity.  

 

After an initial 5 day trip, Shellie learned that 5 short days was not enough time to see everything that a Disney attraction has to offer.  Her personal trips now consist of at least a week so she can experience all of the service and amenities available to Disney travelers.  Her personal slogan for Disney travel is that “if you can’t have fun at Disney, you don’t know the definition of fun”.

 

From rides to shows to fireworks to restaurants, there is no trip complete without a travel plan.  Shellie has become a master at managing all waking hours available to park travelers.  From planning the next meal to magic hours and character dining, Shellie knows how to plan a trip so that you experience everything Disney in whatever amount of time you choose to stay.  She has personally dined at over 20 of the restaurants around the parks and resorts and has graduated from the Disney College of Knowledge. 

 

A final demonstration of Shellie’s Disney love is that for her  40th birthday, she was surprised with a weekend getaway for her and Chris to the place of her dreams:  Walt Disney World!    They enjoyed a “Keys to the Kingdom” backstage tour along with other attractions they would not normally experience when the entire family travels.  What they learned is that regardless of age and travel agenda, there is something magical about spending time at Disney for a special occasion.

 

From serving school children during the week to your children on the weekend, Shellie is ready and willing to help you plan your next Disney destination.

Jen has been a Texan her entire life. From the moment she first stepped foot into Disney World, she knew it would become a life long obsession. She and her family take a trip to Walt Disney World every year and there is no place that they would rather be, although they are patiently counting the days until their next Disney cruise.

 

How fanatic is she about all things Disney? Her nickname has become ‘The Disney Princess’, and in her spare time, she is busy researching and planning her own next trip as well as those of her family and friends. Each trip that Jen takes, she stays in a different resort and tries different restaurants so she can share that first hand experience and expertise with her clients. Some of her favorite things to do are to hit as many character meals as she can, she loves being at the parks at rope drop, likes to unwind and take a nap back at her resort later in the day so she can be one of the last to leave the parks at night.

 

All of Jen’s organization and planning of Disney destination trips has made her a great resource and teacher and her number one goal is to help make her clients’ trips as complete and magical as possible.

Jennifer Willcox

Jennifer is a native Texan and didn’t get to experience the joys of Disney until she went on two high school band and choir trips. Those two trips introduced her to the wonders of Disneyland and Disney World. They gave her a taste of the Disney magic and she never stopped wanting to go back. In 2012, she got to go back and that was the beginning of her addiction to the magic and atmosphere that only Disney can provide. Since then, she has gone on at least two Disney vacations a year (sometimes more).  She has also cruised on the Disney Cruise Line and had a blast!

 

While she does not have any kids, she gets to share her love and excitement for Disney with her fiancé.  They are proof that you don’t have to go to Disney with kids to have fun (although kids add a whole level of fun and excitement to a trip)! They are foodies and love to try all the amazing restaurants. Some of their favorites include California Grill, Brown Derby, and Napa Rose. They also love to experience “behind the scenes magic” and because of this, have experienced most of the tours that Disney World has to offer and a large portion of the tours at Disneyland.

 

Disney is such an amazing place, that to pick a favorite of any aspect is quite difficult for Jennifer. Her favorite on-site resorts would be Port Orleans – French Quarter at Disney World and Disneyland Resort at Disneyland.  While she has never met a Disney ride she didn’t like, she does have a few that stand out to her. She can’t leave without riding Peter Pan’s Flight, Haunted Mansion, Soarin’, or Star Tours.

 

Whether it is your first trip, your tenth trip, adult only, or multi-generational there is always something new and exciting to explore and fun for all and Jennifer, a College of Disney Knowledge graduate, would be thrilled to help you create your perfect vacation.

Alena is a lover of all things Disney! She spent her early childhood living in southern California, and visited Disneyland numerous times, it was love at first site the first time she saw the castle and she has been hooked ever since!

 

Now residing in New Jersey, Alena and her family frequently vacation to Walt Disney World. She has traveled at all times of the year, to experience a little bit of everything, from Epcot's Food and Wine Festival in the Fall, the Holidays in the Winter, and the Flower and Garden Festival in the Spring! She has traveled to Disney with her family of 3, as a couple, and even in a large group with family and friends. Alena has utilized Disney's Fast Pass system, Memory Maker, and Disney's Dining Plan. Her favorite restaurants include: Ohana, Coral Reef, San Angel Inn, Tusker House, and Tony's.

 

After years of planning Disney trips for her own family and friends, Alena understands the time and stress that is dedicated to making every trip magical. To make things easier on you, Alena loves keeping up with the latest Disney news, new offers, planning itineraries/touring plans, making dining reservations and fast passes all to help your family have the most memorable vacation possible!

 

Planning your trip to Disney is not just a job for Alena, it is her passion. Whether this is your first trip, or your 30th trip, her goal is to make sure it is truly magical! 

 

Mary is a Florida native who spent a lot of her childhood in Disney World.  She currently lives in Pensacola, Florida, with her husband and two children.  She was a mortgage closer at a law firm for several years before starting her family and becoming a stay-at-home mom.  An avid and lifelong Disney World fan, she has passed the gene on to her son and daughter.  She and her family visit at least twice a year and stay on different Disney properties each time.  They’ve done everything from character dining at Chef Mickey’s in the Disney Contemporary Resort, to the princess make-over at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, to trick-or-treating at the Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.

 

Her favorite things to do at Walt Disney World are far too numerous to list, but just some of them include: making rope drop; playing “spot the Hidden Mickey” with her family; dancing with her children at the Incredibles Super Dance Party; traveling to Africa for the Kilimanjaro Safari; dining across the globe at EPCOT’s International Food and Wine Festival; breaking as many plates as possible on Toy Story Mania; getting teary-eyed during the Wishes Nighttime Spectacular; and closing out the final night of each trip on the Tomorrowland People Mover, with her kids waving to every passing car and having a contest to see how many people they can get to wave back.

 

When she is not actually in Disney World, she is always planning their next trip.  And she’d love to help you plan yours!

In 1976, Lisa’s parents honeymooned at Walt Disney World. Nine months later, Lisa was born, and it seemed that Disney was firmly ensconced in her DNA. After two family trips as a child, Lisa took it upon herself to return to Walt Disney World again and again from her teen years on (adding in a couple of visits to Disneyland and Disneyland Paris as a bonus). She has celebrated birthdays and other life events with Disney, and feels anxious if she doesn’t have a WDW or Disneyland trip on the horizon.

 

Her favorite activities at WDW include the Main Street Electrical Parade, the Hall of Presidents, Pirates of the Caribbean, Toy Story Midway Mania, Soarin’, and people-watching anywhere in the World. Her favorite dining experiences are the Coral Reef at Epcot, Columbia Harbour House for quick dining at the Magic Kingdom, and the Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show at the Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. Her favorite value resort is Pop Century, and her favorite moderate resort is Port Orleans French Quarter.

 

At Disneyland, Lisa enjoys the Matterhorn Bobsleds, Radiator Springs Racers, and Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, while her favorite dining experience is having a Monte Cristo sandwich on the patio at Café Orleans. She also loves taking tours like the “Walk in Walt’s Disneyland Footsteps” tour, to learn more about the history and philosophy behind the Disney magic.

 

When not at WDW or Disneyland, Lisa daydreams about her next trip while living in Austin, Texas, and masquerading as a high school English teacher, adjunct professor of writing at University of Texas Law School, and test-prep instructor for Kaplan, Inc. She also writes children’s literature, and is dying to find a way to work WDW into one of her stories.

 

Lisa’s energy and unbridled excitement for life is a great fit for the magic of Disney. She has been on trips with only adults, a mixture of generations, and with lots of kids in tow. She loves to plan almost as much as she loves to be at the parks, and believes there is a Disney experience that can be tailored for any individual. She’s happy to provide touring suggestions based on special interests and personalities and would love to help you make Disney magic a part of your life.

Heather lives just outside Nashville, TN. She has two daughters and a husband, who all love Disney and Disney cruises. She loves talking with friends about Disney, the best things to do and the best places to stay. Heather enjoys researching all things Disney, and planning the most fabulous future vacations for her family and friends! Her family’s last trip to Disney was in November and the holiday decorations made the experience extra magical!

Her family’s favorite activities in Walt Disney World include Dole Whips, Space Mountain, Toy Story Mania, Soarin’, Test Track, visiting the different countries in Epcot, and any and all fireworks shows.  But their most favorite vacations are Disney cruises to anywhere! Her dream vacation is to go to Epcot during the Food and Wine Festival, and to go on a European Disney Cruise.

Heather’s personal goal for being a Disney Travel Consultant is making sure that everyone knows and is able to experience that “there is magic for everyone at Disney”, no matter if you are a 5 year old, a 45 year old or an 85 year old!

Monica Bothwell

Monica first visited Walt Disney World when she was three years old and has been hooked ever since.  She is a Wisconsin native but Walt Disney World feels as much like home to her as anywhere. One of her favorite parts about visiting the parks is walking into the resort and hearing the cast member say "Welcome Home." 

 

At Disney, everybody is part of one big family and Monica strives to provide all of her clients with a friendly and personal experience right from the beginning of the planning process. She is a College of Disney Knowledge graduate, has personally dined at over 20 of the restaurants on Walt Disney World® Resort property, has stayed at value, moderate, and deluxe resorts; her favorite being Animal Kingdom Lodge, and has a wealth of knowledge regarding all Disney destinations. Monica's favorite part about planning a Disney vacation is creating a touring plan and itinerary that maximizes valuable time at Walt Disney World. She takes pride in creating detailed plans that work for everyone so her clients can relax and focus on making magical memories with their families. 

 

In addition to helping others plan magical vacations, Monica enjoys spending time with her husband, blogging, golfing, camping, watching and playing sports, and is always looking to learn and experience new things. Monica doesn't see planning Disney trips as a job because she has a deep passion for Disney and for vacation planning. She hopes to help you create your dream vacation soon! 

Ruth is a homeschool mom of 2 girls. Her whole family recently relocated to North Carolina, and they love being closer to Disney!

 

Ruth planned her family's first Disney trip as a birthday surprise for her oldest daughter and was able to book her some great magical extras all the other kids were jealous of. Since then she's been planning trips for her family, large convention groups, and friends and finally decided it was time to help more people have the vacation of their dreams!

 

Her family actually really loves all the educational aspects of Disney including Epcot and the Disney Student Seminars, which her daughters look forward to every time. Ruth loves all aspects of planning and coming up with those little extras that make it extra special.

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