Live Longer, Better®


Our Team

We are a team of explorers, entrepreneurs and outdoor enthusiasts who put our passions to work every day.


Dan Buettner

Dan is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Blue Zones and the New York Times best-selling author of “The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer from the People Who’ve Lived the Longest.” Dan is an internationally recognized explorer, educator, public speaker and co-producer of an Emmy Award-winning travel documentary. Dan has appeared as a longevity expert on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Good Morning America, The Today Show, ABC World News, CBS’s The Early Show and CNN.


Gwen Martin

Gwen is the Managing Director, VP of Corporate Development & Education. She is responsible for the overall direction of Blue Zones and is primarily focused on creating new avenues for growth. Gwen received her BA in International Business from the University of St. Thomas. Prior to joining the team she was an integral part of building an award winning, nationally recognized consulting firm based in Minneapolis.

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Tony Buettner

Tony is the Senior Vice President of Business and Product Development for Blue Zones. He is responsible for sales, product development, partner relationships and delivery of overall operations and services. He received his BA in Operations Management from the University of St. Thomas and spent the first thirty years of his career running an adventure travel company and as owner of wholesale company based in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Following the sale of his wholesale company he opened a retail store and consulted on retail operations throughout the Caribbean. Tony enjoys hunting and fishing, the outdoors, and is dedicated to his family and wife.

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Amelia Clabots

Amelia is the Operations Manager at Blue Zones. She manages daily operations, HR, IT support, bookkeeping, financial reporting and website management. She received her BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and is currently seeking an MBA from the University of St. Thomas. Amelia loves to ski, golf, photograph and eat amazing food. She is also an MCAD alumni board member and volunteers with Open Arms as much as she can.

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Sam Skemp

Sam is the Program Manager at Blue Zones. He oversees Blue Zones Speaking Bureau as well as provides executive assistant support to Blue Zones CEO Dan Buettner. Sam also manages Blue Zones’ social media presence, and handles social media related correspondence. Sam received a degree in Business Management and Leadership from the University of St. Thomas. He loves to golf, ski and spend time with friends and family.


Dan Burden

Dan is the newly-appointed Director of Inspiration and Innovation at Blue Zones. In May 2014, the White House recognized Burden as one of the top ten Champions of Change in Transportation, also named by TIME magazine as “one of the six most important civic innovators in the world,” and his peers at Planetzian list him as one of the 100 most significant urban thinkers of all time. Dan has relentless energy and has personally helped 3500 communities throughout the world make their means of transportation healthier, more active and affordable. Many of Dan’s streets designs and town centers are now celebrated in numerous publications and books and, of course, everyday by the millions of feet utilizing his designs.

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Lydia Turner

Lydia is currently interning at Blue Zones. She is still gaining her sea legs and doing a little bit of everything: managing emails, beginning to help manage the website, assisting in project research and creating Blue Zones recipe videos. Lydia received a BA in Communication Studies from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. She loves dancing, making food for her friends, and petting all the dogs.