Our Journeys

Our Team


Alessandra Gardino Ranghiasci Montgomery

Company founder Alessandra offers travelers immersive tours that create space for authentic interactions. She credits her love of slow travel to her European upbringing -- which includes ties to Italy's historic Palazzo Ranghiasci as well as parents who instilled a love of nature, art and culture. In 2003, she leveraged her experience as a tourism industry executive into an entrepreneurial effort: a boutique tour agency now operating as Customized Journeys. Alessandra is fluent in Italian, French, Spanish, and English.

Benedetta Rappa Verona

Betta has been working side by side with Alessandra since 2010. In addition to being one of the Business Partners at Customized Journeys, she manages the logistics for Customized Journeys tours in Europe and beyond. Betta grew up in the Piedmont region of Italy and after many years of living in the United States, she returned home to run our Italy office. Betta’s love of travel and interacting with new people has also made her a coveted tour leader. She is passionate about sharing her home country of Italy with our travelers! Betta speaks Italian, English, German, and French.

Melissa Egizio Slechta

Melissa joined the Customized Journeys team in 2018. In addition to being one of the Business Partners at Customized Journeys, her role includes project management, business strategy and client services. Her love of travel started at an early age with summer trips to visit her family in the Abruzzo region of Italy. After many years in the corporate and consulting world as a Human Resources professional, Melissa began pursuing her other passion of travel by joining the team. Melissa speaks English and Italian.

Jennifer Trotti O'Brien

Jennifer has been working with Alessandra since 2014. Her role includes tour management alongside our local guides for European tours and beyond. Her expertise in sales, marketing and fundraising, her interest in all things Italian and her own Italian heritage make her an indispensable member of the Customized Journeys team. Jennifer speaks English and Spanish.

Cerissa Reyes

Cerissa joined the team in 2019. At Customized Journeys, her focus is on Administration. Cerissa has spent much of her career in the IT industry before making a move to the travel industry. She brings to the team strong organizational and technical skills. After growing up in the Philippines, Cerissa moved to Portland with her family. She loves exploring her new home in the Pacific Northwest and learning about different cultures. Cerissa speaks English and Filipino.

Willie Anderson

Born in Liverpool, England, Willie came to the US in the late 70’s to play soccer for the Portland Timbers. Previous to that he had good fortune to play in Great Britain for Manchester United, Aston Villa and Cardiff city. After retiring from soccer, Willie went onto sales and advertising positions in the radio industry in Portland, Oregon. Willie loves traveling, having been to over 20 countries in Europe! At Customized Journeys, Willie’s focus is on Sales, along with helping grow Customized Journeys by connecting us with new clients and travel partners.