Offleash’s purpose statement includes a sentence that means a great deal to us: “With joy and respect, we invest in our people’s lives and futures.”
We also pride ourselves on being “unbound by convention.” We enjoy doing things a bit differently, and we think our clients like that about us.
Those two values came together when the agency decided to give a generous stipend for every employee to travel anywhere they wanted in 2018. An unusual bonus, perhaps, but we believe it doesn’t hurt for PR pros who are helping clients make their mark on the world to see the world.
Here are some of the places that Offleash employees explored, along with their insights:
What was your best memory?
Lauren Bogoshian: Argentina
In Patagonia, my best memory was the 22 km trek on the Lago de Los Tres trail to see Mount Fitz Roy up close with my new husband, Zach! Once we reached the top, the winds were fierce, it began to rain, and there was virtually no visibility, so we couldn’t see the peak. I felt like crying at the time, but I love testing my endurance and we felt extremely accomplished at the end regardless. The bottle of local Malbec upon our arrival back to town also helped!!
Cathy Wright: Alaska, USA
My best memories were spending quality time with 14 family members on an Alaskan cruise, whether catching up over a fantastic 5-star gourmet meal, being together to see performances like Jersey Boys and Havana or on the deck together looking at the amazing landscapes and searching for whales. Time is going by quickly and it was wonderful to go on an extended family trip.
Georgia Kulesa: Thailand and Cambodia
My favorite memory was exploring Pai, a small backpacker town in northern Thailand, by motorbike. We checked out a hot springs, ate incredible vegan food and bottle-fed koi fish, which made for a lot of laughs.
What made your Offleash trip meaningful?
Shannon Campbell: Ireland
I was able to go on the trip with my mom, which made it really special, and I wouldn’t have traded it for anything. Thanks to the very specific insight of 23andMe, I already knew I’m 68.4 percent Irish/British. I learned a lot about Ireland’s rich history, and in particular the cultural impact of Irish emigration. My visit to EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum was really enlightening, and I am more committed to diving deeper into my ancestry.
Tanaya Lukaszewski: Amsterdam, The Netherlands and Paris, France
Having a full-time career and being a mom of two small children means there is not a lot of free time to focus on things like international travel. This trip was so meaningful because it allowed my husband and I an opportunity to reconnect with each other and share amazing culinary experiences in two gorgeous cities.
Steve Eisenstadt: Paris, France
This was just my second Paris visit — the first had been 31 years ago — and my wife Alison’s very first. Also, Alison got to see a small town near Dijon — Saussy — where some of her ancestors, also named Saussy, were from. This made our trip an especially big deal to us.
What was your biggest takeaway?
Danielle Salvato-Earl: Sicily, Italy
This trip was all about learning where my family came from and truly taking the time to immerse myself in the Sicilian culture. I was able to connect the dots of my family tree by spending time with and meeting new family members and hearing stories about the past. In a little seaside village called Trappeto, I got to see the house that my great grandfather grew up in. It was magical. My biggest takeaways are: 1) we take for granted a lot of things here in the U.S that we need to appreciate more, and 2) family is everything.
Lila Razzaqui: Spain and Morocco
My husband and I had some fantastic experiences: watching the sunset over Alhambra place, relaxing in an Arab bath house and a desert camel ride! Beyond the fun stuff, the trip exposed me to the very real impact of climate change. Changes in weather are changing Morocco’s biggest industry (agriculture) as well as traditional ways of life for its people. We have a collective responsibility to make the right decisions impacting the environment and affecting people across the globe.
Julie Tangen: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
The best part of my trip was releasing baby turtles to Banderas Bay. The sight of hundreds of newly hatched baby sea turtles instinctively pulling towards the ocean is something I will remember for the rest of my life. They are absolutely fearless, pushing forward into the great unknown without doubt or hesitation. Thank you, baby turtles, for the reminder on the importance of determination, resilience, teamwork, and most of all, being FEARLESS.