Oct 18, 2022
Despite rumblings of a slowing job market, the trade show industry is continuing its strong hiring and promoting momentum, with organizations far and wide filling executive roles with seasoned industry veterans and elevating strong-performing team members with new titles. Check them out! Caesars Entertainment  Caesars Entertainment, Inc. has promoted 20-year sales and hospitality industry veteran Kelly Gleeson Smith to vice president of sales, meetings and events, responsible for leading the global sales strategy for meetings and events for the enterprise and overseeing a team of more than… more
Oct 10, 2022
This month’s People News demonstrates that CVBs and venue management companies are among the busiest event industry entities continuing their hiring streaks as the demand for in-person trade shows and events continues to surge toward pre-pandemic levels. Take a look!  ASM Global  Leading venue and event strategy and management company ASM Global is continuing its growth trajectory with an executive appointment and a major new hire at one of its convention center partners in Detroit. Seasoned industry veteran Daniel Hoffend was recently named executive vice president convention centers,… more
Sep 23, 2022
The Events Industry Council (EIC)  announced the recipients of its annual Global Awards,  which celebrate and honor exemplary achievements within the global business events industry, concentrating on leadership at all levels and specific areas of focus. The EIC received a fantastic number of nominations for the Global Awards this year, according to Amy Calvert, CEO of the EIC. “All [of the nominations] show remarkable personal accomplishments and achievements on behalf of our industry,” Calvert said. “Recognizing, rewarding and celebrating the incredible leadership and innovation in our… more
Sep 22, 2022
Right off the bat (pun intended), I knew Cleo Battle was someone who makes the most of an experience. No more than a couple of minutes into our conversation, the discussion turned to how much he treasures his personalized Louisville Slugger in purple—the color of his hometown baseball team, the Colorado Rockies—which he’s had since moving to Louisville almost 10 years ago, and how he enjoys his fine Kentucky bourbon on occasion—with a nice cigar and a great Sinatra album. Indeed, Battle is an aficionado and a connoisseur of the destination he has represented for nearly a decade, first as… more
Sep 12, 2022
As summer turns to fall, event-related companies, CVBs and venues are continuing to build their teams, appoint new leaders and reward hard-working staff to elevated roles. Check them out! Spiro Spiro, the brand experience agency within the GES Collective, appointed David Kuznick as its global chief financial officer, effective immediately. As an integral part of Spiro’s executive leadership and finance teams, Kuznick will aid the company’s rapid disruption response and strong future growth trajectory.  Before joining Spiro, Kuznick held executive roles at MC2 as COO and at FoodPrep… more
Sep 06, 2022
Global trade show organizer Clarion Events tapped events industry veteran Lisa Hannant to become its new CEO, effective Oct. 1. Hannant joined Clarion in 2008 and in 2013 was appointed to its board as group managing director, responsible for driving international expansion, during which time the company grew significantly in key U.S., European and Asian markets. She also currently serves on the board of SISO as secretary-treasurer. “It’s a huge privilege to be leading the company as it enters the next stage of its growth and evolution,” Hannant said. “Like the rest of the industry, we’ve… more
Sep 01, 2022
Growing up in a culinary family in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico, Chef Lumarie Rodríguez-Soto initially avoided a career in the culinary arts. As a young woman, she tried pursuing other career paths, but her innate creativity and love for baking eventually led her back to the kitchen and then to culinary school at La Escuela Hotelera de Puerto Rico, where she honed her skills, grew her knowledge and perfected her craft.  “Almost everybody in my family—my grandma, my mom and my brother—works in a kitchen, [and] I saw the behind-the-scenes, non-glamorous side of the business, so I knew how hard… more
Aug 19, 2022
The IMEX Group is looking to a renowned, 20-plus-year industry veteran to remodel the professional learning offerings at its two annual shows: IMEX America and IMEX Frankfurt. The group appointed Tahira Endean, author, event instructor and event producer celebrated for her expertise in experience design, sustainability, diversity and inclusion, and event tech, as its newly created head of programme.   Endean embraces a role that signals a new era for IMEX. Under her direction, a three-year education strategy will capitalize on IMEX’s free programming to meet the industry’s thirst for… more
Aug 16, 2022
While the trade show industry tends to slow down during the dog days of summer, that hasn’t stopped event-related organizations from welcoming established industry professionals to their teams while rewarding hard-working staff with elevated titles and responsibilities. Check them out! MAD Event Management  Full-service event planning and management company MAD Event Management LLC (MAD) recently partnered with award-winning journalist Danica Tormohlen to drive content creation for UFI, The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry and the wider business events industry. Tormohlen is… more
Aug 04, 2022
While the U.S. economy may be losing momentum, that hasn’t stopped trade show and event-related organizations—particularly convention and visitors bureaus—from hiring fresh talent and placing new and experienced leadership at the helm. Take a look! Visit Baton Rouge Jill Kidder, current president and CEO of the Louisiana Travel Association (LTA), the primary voice for Louisiana’s tourism industry, has been tapped to become the new president and CEO of Visit Baton Rouge. Selected by the Visit Baton Rouge Board of Directors June 30, she will replace current President and CEO Paul Arrigo, who… more
Partner Voices
Overview: The award-winning Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) goes the extra mile to make every day extraordinary by offering customer service excellence and industry-leading partnerships. From their dedicated in-house Rigging team to their robust Exhibitor Services, The Center of Hospitality brings your imagination to life by helping you host unforgettable meetings and events. With more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space, world-class services and a dream destination, we are committed to making even the most ambitious conventions a reality. In October 2023, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners voted to approve allocating Tourist Development Tax funding for the $560 million Phase 5A completion of the OCCC. The Convention Way Grand Concourse project will include enhancements to the North-South Building, featuring an additional 60,000 square feet of meeting space, an 80,000- square-foot ballroom and new entry to the North-South Building along Convention Way. “We are thrilled to begin work on completing our North-South Building which will allow us to meet the growing needs of our clients,” said OCCC Executive Director Mark Tester. “As an economic driver for the community, this project will provide the Center with connectivity and meeting space to host more events and continue to infuse the local economy with new money and expanding business opportunities.” Amenities: The Center of Hospitality goes above and beyond by offering world-class customer service and industry-leading partnerships. From the largest convention center Wi-Fi network to custom LAN/WAN design, the Center takes pride in enhancing exhibitor and customer experience.  The OCCC is the exclusive provider of electricity (24-hour power at no additional cost), aerial rigging and lighting, water, natural gas and propane, compressed air, and cable TV services. Convenience The Center is at the epicenter of the destination, with an abundance of hotels, restaurants, and attractions within walking distance. Pedestrian bridges connect both buildings to more than 5,200 rooms and is within a 15-minute drive from the Orlando International Airport. The convenience of the location goes hand-in-hand with top notch service to help meet an event’s every need. Gold Key Members The OCCC’s Gold Key Members represent the best of the best when it comes to exceptional service and exclusive benefits for clients, exhibitors and guests. The Center’s Gold Key memberships with Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and Walt Disney World greatly enhance meeting planner and attendee experiences offering world-renowned venues, immersive experiences and creative resources for their events. OCCC Events: This fiscal year, the OCCC is projected to host 168 events, 1.7 million attendees, and $2.9 billion in economic impact.  The Center’s top five events during their 2022-2023 fiscal year included:  AAU Jr. National Volleyball Championships 2023 200,000 Attendees $257 Million in Economic Impact MEGACON 2023 160,000 Attendees $205 Million in Economic Impact Open Championship Series 2023 69,500 Attendees $89 Million in Economic Impact Sunshine Classic 2023 42,000 Attendees $54 Million in Economic Impact Premiere Orlando 2023 42,000 Attendees $108 Million in Economic Impact