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"First Light represents the combination and culmination of a lifetime of personal interests I enjoy—learning, travel, storytelling, media, education, and philanthropy."
- Josh Bernstein, American Explorer, Educator, and Storyteller
Josh Bernstein is the founder and chair of the First Light group of companies. His full CV can be downloaded from this link or by clicking on the PDF icon seen here.
A fellow of both The Explorers Club and the Royal Geographical Society, Josh has traced the Ark of the Covenant from the caverns of Jerusalem to the sacred waters of Ethiopia, communed with tribal chiefs in the remotest jungles of the Amazon, and has ventured deep underground with NASA scientists to explore the origins of life on Earth. He has traveled more than 1,000,000 miles by train, plane, bus, bike, and camel to over 75 countries and all seven continents in pursuit of knowledge and discovery and to shed light on some of the most fascinating mysteries on our planet.
For 25 years, Josh was a wilderness guide with BOSS, the Boulder Outdoor Survival School, the oldest and largest survival school in the country. He first attended BOSS as a student in 1988 and rose through the ranks from apprentice to instructor to marketing director to president & CEO of the company, which he then led for 17 years. In 2013, after the successful acquisition of BOSS, Josh moved to Washington, DC to work with the Smithsonian Institution on a new STEM education initiative. With grants from the Smithsonian, the Department of Education, the Bezos Family Foundation, and others, Explorer At Large (XAL) was founded—a program that gives students the curiosity to ask questions and the courage to seek answers. XAL created very successful pilot programs in Ohio public schools which led to the creation of two new STEM programs for NASA: Project Ianos with the Aldrin Family Foundation in 2021-2022 and Students To Launch with the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics in 2022-2023. All of these initiatives, plus others, now run under First Light Education, where educators help the students of today prepare to face and solve the challenges of tomorrow.
A critically acclaimed author and public speaker, Josh connects and communicates with audiences through a variety of media, including books, photographs, documentaries, and feature films produced by First Light Studios. As a television presenter, Josh is known to audiences in 220 countries and territories around the world for his approachable, authentic style and insatiable curiosity. For three years, Josh hosted the record-breaking hit series Digging for the Truth on the History Channel which, to this day, is still the highest-rated and most respected adventure-archaeology series on TV. He was also the host and executive producer of the Discovery Channel's epic series Into the Unknown with Josh Bernstein. In the years following, Josh has hosted and consulted on a number of shows, including working with the National Geographic Channel, NBC News, and Animal Planet. In addition to working on camera, Josh executive produces and narrates feature films, documentaries, and short-form videos for clients around the world including governments, government agencies, and other high-profile institutions and foundations committed to quality storytelling.
More information about Josh can be found on his CV here.
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