10 Smart Moves in the Meetings Industry: March 10, 2016

Appointments & PromotionsMeeting Planning

Josh HeidenreichMeetings Industry

Omni Fort Worth Hotel in Fort Worth, Texas, welcomes Josh Heidenreich as area managing director and general manager, where he will manage sales, marketing, food and beverage and operational efforts for the hotel. He will also oversee New Orleans properties, including Omni Royal Orleans, Omni Royal Crescent Hotel and Omni Riverfront Hotel. He comes with more than 20 years of hospitality experience and has worked at Omni Hotels & Resorts for eight years in various leadership roles.
Christof PignetMeetings Industry

AAA Five Diamond Acqualina Resort and Spa on the Beach in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, promoted Christof Pignet as general manager. He will oversee all aspects of resort and condominium operations, guest experiences and employee enrichment. Pignet has been with the resort for four years. Under his stewardship, Acqualina retained its Forbes Five Star rating for the fourth consecutive year and its AAA Five Diamond rating for the seventh consecutive year.
Casey GravesMeetings Industry

Casey Graves was named general manager of The Inn at Laguna Beach, where he will also oversee sister property Laguna Beach House. He will be responsible for overseeing operations of the two boutique hotels. Graves was previously general manager of The Wayfarer in Santa Barbara, where he led the resort’s pre-opening phase. Graves is a native of Los Angeles and a graduate of San Francisco State University.

Caroline MacDonaldMeetings Industry

Rosewood Hotel Group named Caroline MacDonald as vice president of sales and marketing for the Americas and Europe. In her new position, she will oversee all sales and marketing initiatives, including the management and supervision of Rosewood Hotel Group’s five regional sales offices. MacDonald has more than 25 years of experience in the luxury hospitality industry. Before working for Rosewood Hotel Group, she spent 15 years with Auberge Resorts.
Jason LuskMeetings Industry

Visit Denver promoted Jason Lusk to associate vice president of convention sales. Lusk joined the convention and visitors bureau in 2007 as a mid-market representative for Washington, DC, and later became director of sales. He has more than 20 years of experience in sales, marketing, management, conferences and events. Lusk is a fixture in the Denver meetings industry and a regular speaker at Metropolitan State University of Denver.
Peter StrebelMeetings Industry

Omni Hotels & Resorts named Peter Strebel chief marketing officer and senior vice president of sales. Strebel will create and drive branding, communications, marketing and business development strategies. Previously he was senior vice president of operations for Omni Hotels & Resorts, where he developed brand-wide property standards and worked directly with hotels. Strebel also serves on the board of directors for Global Hotel Alliance.
Dionne WilliamsMeetings Industry

Dionne Williams was promoted to executive director of group sales at The National Conference Center in Leesburg, Virginia. She is responsible for leading the association and corporate sales team. Williams joined the conference center in 2014 as director of national sales. Previously, she was corporate director of business evaluation for Gaylord Hotels.

“We are delighted to announce that Dionne has received this promotion to the position of executive director of group sales at The National,” stated Lawson. “Her professionalism, leadership and sales abilities are a tremendous asset to our team.”

Mark NaberMeetings Industry

Radisson Blue Minneapolis Downtown appointed Mark Naber as hotel manager, where he will oversee the guest experience, hotel operations, guest services department and FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar. Naber comes to the hotel from Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino, formerly Radisson Aruba Resort, Casino & Spa in Nord, Aruba. There, he implemented a program to provide guests with daily, complimentary activities focused on the needs of the energetic, experiential traveler. Naber plans to begin a similar program at Radisson Blue Minneapolis Downtown.

“I am very excited for this new chapter with Radisson Blu Minneapolis Downtown and ensuring we are providing great service for our guests,” said Naber. “The level of service provided in a city hotel should be the same as at a resort. It is the details that make the difference for the guests.”

Jason WilliamsMeetings Industry

Hotel Zephyr in San Francisco hired Jason Williams as general manager of the property. In this position, he will lead all operations of the waterfront hotel, which recently opened after a $32 million redesign. Williams brings more than 13 years of hospitality experience to his role, which includes stints at Valley River Inn in Eugene Oregon, and Sheraton Iowa City Hotel and hotelVetro in Iowa City, Iowa.

“We are delighted to have Jason join the Zephyr family, said Albert Smith, senior vice president at Pivot Hotels & Resorts. “His seasoned hospitality experience and diverse portfolio brings an exciting perspective that will be a tremendous asset to upholding property standards and service quality.”

Dave MartinezMeetings Industry

Dave Martinez was hired as director of sales and marketing for Hyatt at Olive 8 and Grand Hyatt Seattle. Martinez has been with Hyatt for 16 years, during which he has served as director of sales, marketing and events in Hawaii, director of sales and marketing in New Jersey and corporate director of sales in Chicago. Martinez began his hospitality career with Hyatt as a corporate management trainee at Hyatt Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco.

“Dave Martinez has excelled in his career with the Hyatt brand, and we are thrilled to be welcoming him to the Seattle office in this key leadership role,” said Steve Vissotzky, general manager of Hyatt at Olive 8 and Grand Hyatt Seattle. “We look forward to Dave using his expertise in marketing and public relations to establish a stronger presence for the downtown Hyatt properties with the greater Seattle community.”