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Christine Krzyszton

Senior Finance Contributor

311 Published Articles

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine was born in Northern Michigan but spent most of her career operating her own business developing and managing insurance and financial services offices throughout the state. Her previous experience involved building and writing business plans in the mergers and acquisitions sector in New York, as well as staffing in the insurance and financial technology software field.

Her successful insurance and financial services career has been an excellent foundation from which to source her knowledge for many of Upgraded Points’ travel insurance articles.

Additionally, Christine has a collection of over 2 dozen current credit cards, including those issued by American Express, Chase, Citi, Discover, U.S. Bank, and previously Barclays and Capital One. Her goal is to learn every aspect of the cards’ attributes with a hands-on approach in order to translate that experience to her in-depth comparison and benefit articles. Beyond using the cards for earning and redeeming rewards, we won’t even mention the hours she spends reading each card’s Guide to Benefits.

Although Christine applies for cards on a consistent basis, she keeps a close watch on her credit score to maintain an excellent credit rating averaging between 820 to 840.

Her favorite use of points includes purchasing premium class fare tickets with The Business Platinum Card® from American Express to receive the 35% points rebate. Keeping a healthy balance of hundreds of thousands of points allows her to purchase several business class flights each year. She’s also a fan of the Chase Sapphire Reserve® which she uses to purchase bargain business class fares with Chase Ultimate Rewards points to receive 1.5 cents per point in value.

Christine now makes Northern Michigan her home, but she also travels over 200,000 miles each year, most of it internationally. She uses her miles to position to cities where deals can be found, preferably in business class, and uses rewards points to pay for the flights. She also uses her earned systemwide upgrades to fly in business and first class.

For over 10 years, Christine has been writing about her weekend travels, personal finance, and travel tips. She has been a contributor to various online travel blogs, a regional men’s magazine, travel newsletters and lifestyle blogs, and authored a book, “How To See the World in a Weekend,” about her weekend travels.

She has nearly 5 million flown miles, elite status on all 3 major domestic carriers, and is a 3-million miler with Delta Air Lines.

You can follow Christine on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite, Hilton Honors Diamond

Delta SkyMiles Diamond Medallion

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Emirates First Class A380 Suite

Delta One Suites

Avios for short-haul flights

Chase Ultimate Rewards

Christine's Latest Articles

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27 Valuable Benefits of the Citi Strata Premier Card [For Travelers]

27 Valuable Benefits of the Citi Strata Premier Card [For Travelers]

If you’re a frequent traveler and want the perks of a premium travel rewards card but not the high annual fee, consider the Citi Strata Premier℠ Card. If most of your spending is on travel, gas, entertainment, and dining, this…

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Wells Fargo Autograph Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph Journey Card [Detailed Comparison]

Wells Fargo Autograph Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph Journey Card [Detailed Comparison]

A premium travel rewards card might be the perfect choice for frequent travelers, but high annual fees can be a drawback. Let’s look at 2 travel rewards cards that don’t have high annual fees but offer strong travel earnings, flexible…

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The 6 Best Military Credit Cards for Active-Duty Members in May 2024 [Waived Annual Fees]

The 6 Best Military Credit Cards for Active-Duty Members in May 2024 [Waived Annual Fees]

Serving in our country’s military brings added responsibility and commitment — but it can also bring financial challenges. Years ago, some of the financial challenges that military families face were recognized and addressed with the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act of…

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Best 0% APR and Low-Interest Credit Cards in May 2024 (Up to 21 Months)

Best 0% APR and Low-Interest Credit Cards in May 2024 (Up to 21 Months)

The best way to avoid paying interest on a credit card is to never carry over a balance on that card in the first place. However, in real life, things happen — an unexpected home or car repair, a large…

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The Best Credit Cards for Airport Lounge Access [2024]

The Best Credit Cards for Airport Lounge Access [2024]

If you’re a frequent traveler, consider a premium credit card that offers complimentary airport lounge access. Beyond the lounge access you’d get with these cards, you’d receive a whole range of travel benefits. Premium credit cards offer generous welcome bonus…

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How I Find Outsized Value With the AC Hotels by Marriott Brand

How I Find Outsized Value With the AC Hotels by Marriott Brand

Earning hotel loyalty points can be easier than finding good value at redemption time, especially for an aspirational stay. While I enjoy the occasional luxury hotel, I tend to gravitate towards properties I can purchase with fewer points yet still…

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The Reykjavik EDITION in Iceland [In-Depth Marriott Hotel Review]

The Reykjavik EDITION in Iceland [In-Depth Marriott Hotel Review]

I have a minor love affair with Iceland. While I have yet to explore everything there is to see and do, I keep returning to add to my experiences. Iceland is easy to travel to with reasonably priced and frequent…

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Chase Sapphire Preferred Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph Card [Detailed Comparison]

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph Card [Detailed Comparison]

It’s a classic debate — paying an annual credit card fee to receive more benefits versus not. Today’s card comparison pairs up 2 popular cards that are perfect examples representing both sides of this argument. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card…

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19 Benefits of the Wells Fargo Autograph Card [$1,540+ Value]

19 Benefits of the Wells Fargo Autograph Card [$1,540+ Value]

Finding an everyday credit card that earns elevated rewards on every purchase can be challenging. The Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card takes on that challenge with strong earnings and surprising benefits for a -annual-fee card. The card won’t burden you with…

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Ink Business Preferred Card vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred Card [Detailed Comparison]

Ink Business Preferred Card vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred Card [Detailed Comparison]

Today’s card comparison is a must-read if you’re deciding between a premium Chase business card or securing a Chase personal travel rewards card. The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card and the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offer tremendous value. Small business…

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Hilton Surpass Card vs. Hilton Aspire Card [Detailed Comparison]

Hilton Surpass Card vs. Hilton Aspire Card [Detailed Comparison]

If Hilton is your hotel brand of choice, you’ll be interested in today’s card comparison. It’s well-known that a hotel-branded credit card can help you earn free hotel nights faster, make your hotel stays more comfortable, and provide valuable travel…

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Hilton Surpass Card vs. Hilton Honors Card [Detailed Comparison]

Hilton Surpass Card vs. Hilton Honors Card [Detailed Comparison]

If you’re a Hilton brand loyalist or stay at Hilton properties even a few times a year, you’ve probably considered a Hilton-branded credit card. Opting for elevated earnings on Hilton stays and everyday purchases is a smart decision. You’ll build…

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The 10 Best Credit Cards for eBay Purchases [2024]

The 10 Best Credit Cards for eBay Purchases [2024]

You can buy nearly anything on eBay, one of the world’s largest marketplaces. You can also shop confidently on the site as it is one of the world’s oldest, having an online presence since 1995. If you shop frequently on…

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Hilton Surpass Card vs. Marriott Boundless Card [Detailed Comparison]

Hilton Surpass Card vs. Marriott Boundless Card [Detailed Comparison]

There are many benefits to having a hotel-branded credit card. Card benefits can enhance your brand experience with elevated rewards earning, hotel loyalty program elite status, and preferred redemption options. Today’s article will particularly interest those who frequent the Hilton…

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Chase Sapphire Preferred Card vs. Hilton Surpass Card [Detailed Comparison]

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card vs. Hilton Surpass Card [Detailed Comparison]

If you enjoy traveling but hate spending a fortune, securing a rewards-earning credit card to help offset travel expenses is a logical consideration. Whether you’re looking to cover the cost of flights, lodging, or even experiences, a travel rewards card…

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Chase Sapphire Preferred Card vs. Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card [Detailed Comparison]

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card vs. Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card [Detailed Comparison]

If you frequent a specific hotel chain, you may have struggled to select a hotel-branded credit card or a travel rewards card. Each option has a case to be made. Select a travel rewards card and earn flexible rewards that…

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Amex Platinum Card vs. Apple Card [Detailed Comparison]

Amex Platinum Card vs. Apple Card [Detailed Comparison]

There is an endless collection of rewards-earning cards at your disposal. A key objective to keep in mind during your search for the perfect card is earning well on the purchases you spend the most on. Beyond that, redemption options…

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Amex Platinum Card vs. Bank of America Premium Rewards Card [Detailed Comparison]

Amex Platinum Card vs. Bank of America Premium Rewards Card [Detailed Comparison]

Selecting a personal travel rewards card is well — personal. We all have different spending habits and a tolerance for how large an annual fee we’re comfortable paying. Plus, our goals may differ depending on how we utilize our rewards….

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Amex Gold Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph Card [2024]

Amex Gold Card vs. Wells Fargo Autograph Card [2024]

A key foundation of a points and miles lifestyle is having an everyday spending card that earns rewards on common purchases. With that foundation in place, every purchase you make will earn valuable rewards. Selecting a card that will match…

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Amex Gold Card vs. Bank of America Premium Rewards Card [Detailed Comparison]

Amex Gold Card vs. Bank of America Premium Rewards Card [Detailed Comparison]

We’re big fans of earning rewards not just on major purchases but also on regular purchases such as dining and groceries. Those everyday purchases add up, and so do the associated rewards. To maximize earning rewards on frequent purchases, you’ll…

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Citi Double Cash Card vs. Amex Blue Cash Everyday Card [Detailed Comparison]

Citi Double Cash Card vs. Amex Blue Cash Everyday Card [Detailed Comparison]

Whether it’s your daily coffee, a work lunch, or purchases at the grocery store and gas station, using a card (whether debit or credit) has become the norm over using cash. For this reason, using an everyday spending card that…

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Ashley Onadele

Content Contributor

Ashley discovered a love for travel in college that’s continued as her family has grown. She loves showing parents how they can take their families on trips using points and has contributed to numerous publications and podcasts.

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Brandon Brunner

Former Content Contributor

Brandon was born and raised in California and really didn’t travel much growing up, even outside of his own state. While attending college, he was constantly looking to find the cheapest fares to any destination abroad, and quickly learned about the motto- “Chase the fare, not the destination”. Luckily, his first international flight was to Costa Rica (under $300 roundtrip) where that “Pura Vida” lifestyle (and Imperials) hit him hard, and he knew he had to see more.

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Brett Holzhauer

Content Contributor

Brett is a personal finance and travel junkie. Based out of Fort Lauderdale, he’s had over 100 credit cards and earned millions of credit card rewards. He learned the tricks of the trade from his mom, and has taken many steps forward. He wasn’t exposed to much travel as a kid, but now has a goal of reaching 100 countries in his life. In 2019, he sold all of his possessions to become a digital nomad, and he says it was one of the best decisions he ever made. He plans to do it again at some point in his life.

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Brian Graham

Former Content Contributor

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Carissa Rawson

Senior Content Contributor

Carissa served in the U.S. Air Force where she developed her love for travel and new cultures. She started her own blog and eventually joined The Points Guy. Since then, she’s contributed to Business Insider, Forbes, and more.

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Caroline Lupini

Former Content Contributor

Caroline Lupini always enjoyed traveling, but it became her goal to do as much as possible after a 3-week trip around Europe in 2011. In March 2014, Caroline left her job and embarked on nearly full-time travels. 

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Charlie Page

Former Content Contributor

Charlie is a Senior First Officer and has been an airline pilot for nearly 15 years. He currently flies long-haul on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner after 10 years buzzing around Europe on the A320. He got into travel and aviation from an early age, fortunate enough to be taken on some great family holidays.

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Cherag Dubash

Content Contributor

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Chris Dong

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Christy Rodriguez

Travel & Finance Content Contributor

After having “non-rev” privileges with Southwest Airlines, Christy dove into the world of points and miles so she could continue traveling for free. Her other passion is personal finance, and is a certified CPA.

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Daniel Ross

Senior Content Contributor

Daniel has loved aviation and travel his entire life. He earned a Master of Science in Air Transport Management and has written about travel and aviation in publications like Simple Flying, The Points Guy, and more.

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Dan Miller

Content Contributor

Realizing that it wasn’t all first class flights and 5-star hotels, Dan started the Points With a Crew blog in 2014, with the aim of helping families (especially large families) to use miles, points and credit card rewards to take that trip that they might have thought they couldn’t afford. He has spent over 10 years covering developments in the travel rewards credit card space. His expertise extends to all things personal finance, including student loans, budgeting and real estate, and his work has been featured in sites all over the Internet, including NerdWallet, Forbes, Business Insider, Rocket Mortgage, CreditCards.com, Bankrate, Turbotax, Credit Karma and Intuit Mint.

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David Slotnick

Former Content Contributor

Born and raised in New York, David still remembers his first flight when he was only four years old: a U.S. Airways trip from New York-La Guardia to Palm Beach, Florida. He formed his love of travel around that and other family vacations, including to England at age eight and Namibia when he was 13. During college, a four-country trip around Europe with a friend cemented his passion for seeing the world.

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Ehsan Haque

Content Contributor

Ehsan is an avid traveler who has traveled to 100 countries, diligently using points and miles to fund his journeys. Currently, he holds 32 active credit cards and earns over a million points and miles annually, primarily using them for luxury hotels and long-haul premium cabins.

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Erin Miller

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An experienced points hacker, Erin is Alex’s partner-in-crime and contributes to Upgraded Points with in-depth guides and relationship management. Erin’s work has been cited in multiple major publications.

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Greg Stone

Content Contributor

Greg got bitten by the travel bug at a young age while traveling with his Dad on business trips to Asia. He took over the family business in 2012 and uses it to maximize his loyalty points earning. His obsession with earning and burning loyalty rewards points allows him to travel over 100 days every year.

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James Larounis

Senior Content Contributor

James (Jamie) started The Forward Cabin blog to educate readers about points, miles, and loyalty programs. He’s spoken at Princeton University and The New York Times Travel Show and has been quoted in dozens of travel publications.

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Jeff Brownson

Former Content Contributor

Since discovering miles and points in 2010, Jeff has traveled to over 35 countries, flying in first class, business class, and sometimes even in coach. Whether he’s staying in a hostel dorm, or in a luxury suite at a 5 star hotel, Jeff is constantly looking for the best deal to make travel as close to free as possible.

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Julian Kheel

Content Contributor

Julian Kheel first learned the ins and outs of credit card rewards and travel loyalty programs while flying more than 200,000 miles a year as a TV producer and director for World Wrestling Entertainment. With over 15 years of professional experience studying travel loyalty programs, Julian has served as CNN’s Senior Editor covering travel and credit cards, as well as the Editorial Director of The Points Guy, and has worked as a consultant for the Big 3 U.S. airlines.

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Katie Seemann

Senior Content Contributor and News Editor

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure, Forbes Advisor, and Fortune Recommends.

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Lindsey Olander

Former Content Contributor

Currently based in New York, Lindsey spent her childhood in Connecticut dreaming of far-off places. Her first flight was to Disney World at age 11. Her second flight was for a high school field trip to Italy, though travel as a career didn’t stick until she studied abroad in London during college and discovered the true power of her passport. Since then, she’s worked as a travel editor at Jetsetter and Travel + Leisure, where she reported on everything from African safaris to hot hotel openings to, yes, Disney World.

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Lukas Picton

Former Content Contributor

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Michael McHugh

Former Content Contributor

Born and raised in Mobile, Alabama, Michael took his first international trip in 2013 with friends to the Bahamas. Although he didn’t travel much in his younger years, on that trip, he caught the travel bug and has been hooked ever since.

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Ryan Smith

Content Contributor

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Senitra Horbrook

Writer

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Spencer Howard

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Senior Content Contributor

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Jarrod West

Senior Content Contributor

Boasting a portfolio of over 20 cards, Jarrod has been an expert in the points and miles space for over 6 years. He earns and redeems over 1 million points per year and his work has been featured in outlets like The New York Times.

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Alex Miller

Founder & CEO

Founder and CEO of Upgraded Points, Alex is a leader in the industry and has earned and redeemed millions of points and miles. He frequently discusses the award travel industry with CNBC, Fox Business, The New York Times, and more.

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Stella Shon

News Managing Editor

With a degree in media and journalism, Stella has been in the points and miles game for more than 6 years. She most recently worked as a Corporate Communications Analyst for JetBlue. Find her work in The New York Times, USA Today, and more.

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Nick Ellis

Editor & Content Contributor

Nick’s passion for points began as a hobby and became a career. He worked for over 5 years at The Points Guy and has contributed to Business Insider and CNN. He has 14 credit cards and continues to leverage the perks of each.

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Juan Ruiz

Senior Editor & Content Contributor

Juan has extensive experience in writing and editing content related to credit cards, loyalty programs, and travel. He has been honing his expertise in this field for over a decade. His work has been featured in various prestigious publications, such as USA Today, CNN Underscored, Forbes and The Points Guy. Juan is the visionary behind JetBetter, a premier award booking concierge service.

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Michael Y. Park

Editor

Michael Y. Park is a journalist living in New York City. He’s traveled through Afghanistan disguised as a Hazara Shi’ite, slept with polar bears on the Canadian tundra, picnicked with the king and queen of Malaysia, tramped around organic farms in Cuba, ridden the world’s longest train through the Sahara, and choked down gasoline clams in North Korea.

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Keri Stooksbury

Editor-in-Chief

With years of experience in corporate marketing and with a nonprofit, Keri is now editor-in-chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and reviewing thousands of UP articles in the process.

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Kellie Jez

Director of Operations & Compliance

Kellie’s professional experience has led her to a deep passion for compliance, data reporting, and process improvement. Kellie’s learned the ins and outs of the points and miles world and leads UP’s compliance operation.

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Jessica Merritt

Editor & Content Contributor

A long-time points and miles student, Jessica is the former Personal Finance Managing Editor at U.S. News and World Report and is passionate about helping consumers fund their travels for as little cash as possible.

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Lori Zaino

Senior Content Contributor

Lori is an intrepid traveler who loves creating itineraries that exude “luxe on a budget.” She’s written for CNN, NBC, The Infatuation, and more, and loves to muse about points-fueled trips to Sri Lanka, Sicily, and Myanmar.

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Chris Hassan

Social Media & Brand Manager

Chris holds a B.S. in Hospitality and Tourism Management and managed social media for all Marriott properties in South America, making him a perfect fit for UP and its social media channels. He has a passion for making content catered toward family travelers.

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Victoria M. Walker

Senior Content Contributor

Victoria holds a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the Howard University School of Communications and is an award-winning journalist, travel reporter, and the founder of the “Carrying On with Victoria M. Walker” newsletter.

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