People News: Flurry of Hires Across Variety of Trade Show Sectors

November 7, 2017
Desiree Hanson

The fall kicked off with a flurry of new hires across a variety of trade show sectors, including show organizing companies, display and contractor companies and convention and visitor bureaus.

Clarion UX (formerly Urban Expositions) named Desiree Hanson vice president of Fashion Events overseeing the Womenswear in Nevada (WWIN) portfolio. She reports to UX CEO, Greg Topalian.

In her new role, Hanson will oversee all sales, marketing and management functions for the semi-annual WWIN womenswear apparel trade show held at the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

She also will work closely with former WWIN Show Director Chad Timney who has moved into a consultant role with the show.

The Spokane Public Facilities District (District) named current Spokane Convention Center General Manager, Stephanie Curran, as incoming CEO.

Kevin Twohig, District CEO, announced back in September that he will be retiring at the end of 2017. The District engaged Venue Solutions Group to lead a national search process and recently conducted a series of candidate interviews.

Curran, who has been an employee of the District since 2003, has served in many roles, ranging from event supervisor to assistant general manager of the Spokane Convention Center and INB Performing Arts Center to being named general manager in 2015.

Detroit-based Display Group recently added Andy Olis as chief operating officer (COO).   

Olis rejoins Display Group after spending 10 years in the professional audio-visual industry in various management and operations roles.

Olis has held several leadership roles in his career and has been successful in developing and achieving goals by implementing efficient sales and field best practices with clear performance measurements.

Previously, Olis was the general manager at Display Group and is being welcomed back with open arms for his homecoming.

TradeTec Skyline, a full-service B2B exhibit house specializing in trade show displays and services is pleased to announce the recent expansion of their project team:

  • Krista McCloud, who joined TradeTec as an account coordinator in October 2015 has been promoted to the role of account manager.
  • Haley Doss has joined TradeTec as an account coordinator.
  • Victoria Scholly has joined TradeTec as an account coordinator.

Visit Baltimore, the official sales and marketing organization for Baltimore, welcomed Kireem Swinton to the convention sales department as director of convention sales development, Mid-Atlantic region and tradeshows.

Swinton brings a wealth of industry knowledge and strong passion for promoting Baltimore to his new role.

He will focus on sales development for citywide conventions from the Mid-Atlantic region, with an emphasis on new business development from the trade show market.

Sue Holle joined Hargrove as a director, National Accounts. She is responsible for operational oversight for all national trade show business, working with the internal sales team to introduce industry- leading technology and best practices to our clients, as well as developing new business relationships.

MC2 hired on Aaron Miller as executive creative director.

In this role, he will work closely with the company’s chief strategy officer, national design director, designers and account executives to inspire, lead and motivate teams to create breakthrough face-to-face brand experiences.

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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