by Terence Baker | April 01, 2007

Bonnie Boyd, CMPMPI’s event in January sent out a great message that the city is back and ready.

Bonnie Boyd, CMP, is president of Bonnie Boyd & Co. (www.bbcdmc.com), a New Orleans-based destination management company affiliated with Global Events Partners, a group of 70 independently owned DMCs across the globe. Boyd has more than 20 years of DMC experience. She is a New Orleans native.

How is business in New Orleans today? There has been a pickup, mostly from corporate business that has put its money where its mouth is. Where we do face a challenge is in encouraging citywide programs. We are getting more, but many have been scared off by the media that seems to report only on the city’s problems, not its successes. Meeting Professionals International’s Professional Education Conference event in January sent out a great message that the city is back and ready.

How have groups helped the city’s rebirth? Give-back programs for charities such as Habitat for Humanity are very popular. They have helped rebuild medical facilities, churches and even Musicians Village, where displaced musicians are being rehoused and can resume playing and teaching.

What has been your most memorable experience since Katrina? We worked with the Aquarium of the Americas to bring back two sea otters and 19 penguins that were temporarily housed in Monterey, Calif. These animals have an iconic status here, and when FedEx graciously offered to fly them all home, we helped arranged a procession from the airport back to the reopened zoo.