News

Jan 14, 2022
If you asked Tony Salah what he was most passionate about when he started his career, business and technology would have topped the list, considering his degree in electrical engineering along with an MBA from Harvard. Fast forward several years when a family health issue arose, and he suddenly became laser-focused on the inefficiencies within the healthcare system and wellness as tool to prevent illness. “It became deeply meaningful to me and ignited my passion to combine my technology and business background with the health and wellness space,” Salah said. “I saw so much need and so many… more
Jan 13, 2022
If anyone knows a thing or two about navigating through disruptive times, it’s Brad Dean. In 2018, he was tapped to helm Discover Puerto Rico, the island’s first-ever destination marketing organization, following a series of natural and public health disasters, including Zika virus and hurricanes Irma and Maria.  Coming onboard the year after Hurricane Maria pummeled the island—along with its tourism industry—Dean quickly assembled a stellar team of more than 50 people at Discover Puerto Rico, leading them in a remarkable period of recovery and growth that boosted tourism 45% in the first 18… more
Jan 12, 2022
As event professionals embark on 2022 amid ever-evolving circumstances of the pandemic, a new research report released by Splash, an event marketing technology company, points to a robust year for in-person, virtual and hybrid events through insights on event strategies, event technology, budgets and attendee attitudes. The Getting Back to Business: An Outlook on Events in 2022 report, a continuation of Splash’s 2021 version of the same name, is based on a November 2021 survey of nearly 3,400 event professionals and event attendees. It provides insights on how event professionals, event… more
Jan 10, 2022
South Florida’s newly expanded Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center (GFLCC) is gearing up to grow even bigger, doubling the size of its original footprint by late 2025.  Following a 20-month expansion and enhancement project that increased the 600,000-square-foot facility to 800,000 sq. ft., including a 350,000-sq.-ft. exhibit hall, the venue reopened its doors to event groups in October 2021. Broward County officials held a bond signing ceremony Dec. 17 to finalize funding needed to move forward with the remainder of the project, which will include a new eastside… more
Jan 07, 2022
Two of the biggest names in event tech, MeetingPlay and Aventri, have tied the knot, creating an industry powerhouse that aims to provide an innovative, full-lifecycle event planning and management solution. In conjunction with the merger, the company, now known as MeetingPlay and Aventri with plans to eventually rebrand with a new name, received a growth equity investment from Sunstone Partners and Camden Partners and named Eric Lochner its new CEO. With more than 25 years of experience in building technology and technology-enabled services companies, Lochner has a solid record of mergers… more
Jan 06, 2022
On Dec. 28, Jeff Guaracino, president and CEO of VISIT PHILADELPHIA, passed away after a battle with cancer. He was 48 years old. A Philadelphia native and passionate tourism leader, Guaracino served two stints at VISIT PHILADELPHIA, first as director of communications and vice president of communications from 2001 to 2012, and then as president and CEO in 2018.  According to VISIT PHILADELPHIA officials, under Guaracino’s leadership, the official marketing agency of the Philadelphia region continued driving leisure tourism throughout the pandemic with omni-channel marketing efforts. These… more
Jan 05, 2022
The Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) Foundation will once again honor and celebrate the global business events industry’s exceptional stars during this year’s PCMA Visionary Awards ceremony. The foundation has announced the 2022 Lifetime Achievement honorees, Groundbreaker Award recipient and Professional Excellence finalists.  The 2022 Visionary Awards celebration will be held March 24 at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md., in conjunction with the inaugural Business Events Industry Week. Created by Destinations International, the … more
Jan 03, 2022
As 2022 begins, new hires and promotions continue to take place throughout the corporate events industry. Check out who’s moving in and moving up at event-related organizations throughout the U.S.—and across the pond. Maritz  Professional services company Maritz has recently made some recent executive leadership changes. Following nearly 25 years of leading the company as CEO and chairman, Steve Maritz is transitioning into an executive chairman role, responsible for overseeing high-level functions, including finance, legal and board-related issues. David Peckinpaugh, who for 11 years has… more
Dec 31, 2021
Christine Duffy, national chair of the U.S. Travel Association and president of Carnival Cruise Line, announced nine industry leaders to serve on a committee to identify the association’s next president and CEO following the retirement of Roger Dow in July 2022. The search committee, drawn from U.S. Travel’s board of directors, is representative of core segments of the travel industry, including two from destination marketing organizations, the largest segment of association membership. The individuals who will serve on the search committee are: Christine Duffy, president, Carnival Cruise… more
Dec 30, 2021
The newly launched Global Business Events Barometer from the Events Industry Council (EIC) has found a significant upswing in global group demand during Q3 2021, while overall, business meetings and events activity has recovered to approximately half of pre-pandemic levels. The barometer, which was created by Oxford Economics on behalf of EIC as part of the 2021 EIC Economic Significance Study, monitors the changes within the market relative to pre-pandemic (2019) levels and explores two key areas: hotel group room nights and request for proposal (RFP) activity. The barometer indicates that… more