People News: Tarsus Group, SMG, Visit KC and GES All Make Hires

February 6, 2017
RD Whitney

The brisk hiring trend that kicked off the beginning of the year has continued, with several companies that serve the bustling trade show industry making hires.

RD Whitney was appointed as executive vice president of Business Development Tarsus Americas, a division of U.K.-based Tarsus Group, with immediate effect Feb. 1.

RD previously was group vice president at Diversified Communications overseeing a growing portfolio of business communities and events.

Prior to Diversified, and in just 27 months as a Partner at Greenhaven Partners, RD transformed former BNA (now Bloomberg) publishing assets into a thriving professional business community (IOFM) which was acquired by Diversified in April 2013. RD also is a board member for Onstream Media.

“I am pleased to be able to announce RD’s appointment, his proven track record in the events industry will help us to accelerate our growth in the US,” said Douglas Emslie, group managing director of Tarsus. “I am sure he will play a key role as we continue to implement the Group’s ‘Quickening the Pace’ strategy."

Win anticipation of its March 1 opening, the SMG-managed Albany Capital Centerhas hired Joseph Leavens as operations manager beginning Feb. 6. With this appointment, the ACC continues to round out its internal senior management team.

Having started his career in the Capital Region, Leavens comes to the ACC from his most recent position at another SMG-managed property, Hampton Roads Convention Center (HRCC) in Hampton, Va. As facilities operations manager at HRCC, Leavens managed its security and maintenance departments.

Prior to his role as operations manager, Leavens was the manager of housekeeping and setup for the convention center.

IMN Solutions, a full-service association, meeting and event management industry, has announced that Lauren Moore has joined the team as senior account director.

Moore’s primary responsibility is to maintain IMN’s commitment to its clients by providing exceptional account management services.

She will oversee and further develop IMN’s growing portfolio of religious and faith-based clients, which aligns with her extensive experience and success serving the religious segment of the meetings industry.

Moore comes to IMN Solutions from Lexington, Ky., where she previously held several positions for the Hyatt Regency Lexington during the last seven years, including senior sales manager.

Edlen Electrical Exhibition Services, an independent electrical contractor to the convention and trade show industry, has added Jim Ness to the Las Vegas office

Ness joined Edlen in the role of executive vice president. A University of Michigan graduate and Las Vegas native, he has 35 years of professional experience in the Las Vegas convention services and meetings business.

Visit KC hired Lauren McKee as national sales manager. Prior to joining the team, McKee served as sales manager at Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown, where she handled all of the hotel’s corporate groups. She was also responsible for business development and maintaining ongoing client relationships. She is a graduate of the University of Missouri with a degree in hospitality management.

The Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau has named Dave Beachnau, senior vice president of Sales, Marketing & Sports.

Beachnau will be responsible for overseeing DMCVB meetings and conventions sales and marketing initiatives including advertising, public relations, publishing and social media. He will also continue to lead the Detroit Sports Commission (DSC).

Beachnau has worked at the DMCVB in different capacities for the past 24 years. Since 2001 he served as the executive director for the DSC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the DMCVB.

He was closely involved in the creation of the DSC and its rebranding initiative which included the development of the tagline “Where Champions are made and Championships are played. Detroit.”

GES has appointed Patrick Lukan as COO for the Middle East as the company prepares for significant growth in the region in 2017 and beyond.

Lukan joins GES from CityJet, where he held the position of vice president of Sales & Distribution. He has 25 years of senior international experience in both the technology and travel industry.

He will be based in GES’ Dubai office and report directly to GES Middle East managing director Yasser Al Maaytah.  

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Partner Voices
Dallas already boasts 35,000 hotel rooms, award-winning global cuisine, and a walkable downtown. But we are just getting started. Visit Dallas is thrilled to announce that the city of Dallas is doubling down with a massive new convention center and entertainment district. Featuring 800,000 square feet of exhibit area, 260,000 square feet of meeting rooms, and 170,000 square feet of ballroom. The center will connect business travelers with dining and shopping options in the popular Cedars District means more places to get down to business, and even more ways to unwind. “Dallas is already a great meetings and conventions destination, with the accessibility of two major airports, affordable labor, and an outstanding hotel product,” said D. Bradley Kent, Visit Dallas senior vice president and chief sales officer. “The new center and Convention Center District will enhance Dallas’ competitive position and are exactly what our customers’ need and have been asking for." What’s New – AT&T Discovery District Located in the heart of Downtown Dallas, this new district on the AT&T corporate campus is tailor-made for groups of all sizes. It boasts a multi-sensory experience, including outdoor event space, the AT&T Theater, and multiple dining outlets including JAXON Beer Garden and The Exchange, a bustling food hall. Hotels Coming Soon Names like the JW Marriott (Downtown), lnterContinental Dallas (Uptown), and Hotel Swexan (Uptown) are adding luxury amenities and bountiful event spaces. The projects will debut in 2023 and beyond. JW Marriott This new, 15-story, 283-room hotel will open in the heart of the city’s downtown Arts District this year. The property features a 25,000-square-foot grand ballroom, as well as a spa, restaurant, lobby bar, fitness center, and a rooftop pool deck and bar. InterContinental Dallas  Located in Cityplace Tower in Uptown, InterContinental Dallas will feature sweeping panoramic views of the Dallas skyline. Guests will enjoy spacious, high-end rooms and amenities, including more than 21,000 square feet of event space.   Hotel Swexan Hotel Swexan, a new, 22-story luxury property, is rising in Uptown’s Harwood District and will make its mark on the Dallas skyline. Opening this year, it is a sculptural building with cantilevered upper floors, as well as a 75-foot rooftop infinity-edge swimming pool and a hidden underground lounge.