"I began as a paperboy. I wasn't too pleased having to lug wet paper in 20-below weather..."
David Noonan, deputy vice president and COO of the San Francisco-based American Academy of Ophthalmology, was the recipient of last year's Professional Performance Award, given by the American Society of Association Professionals and ASAE & The Center, for his contributions as an association executive. Last month, Noonan retired after more than 40 years in the medical meetings profession.
What has been a highlight of your career? To paraphrase Nelson Mandela, "It wasn't the pain or the victories, it was the people I met along the way."
What was your first job? I began as a paperboy, in Casper, Wyo.; 140 papers, six days a week. I wasn't too pleased having to lug wet paper in 20-below weather, but I loved the customer interface of collecting biweekly subscriptions. Great schmooze time!
Do you have any advice to those just getting started in association management? If you can't go home each night feeling that at least one thing you did that day made the life of your membership and society a better place, then you are in the wrong career.
What's the greatest professional compliment you've ever received? I have two. The first is that my wife leaves the door open for me to come home each night. The second was being elected as a Life Fellow of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
Any plans for your retirement? Boredom, fishing, exercise, home repair -- in that order.
Robert E. de Leon joins Meeting & Incentive Forums
Robert E. de Leon has been hired as director of sales, North America, for Meeting & Incentive Forums, a series of networking events organized by London-based hotel marketing company Great Hotels Organisation. The position entails recruiting suppliers, as well as corporate, incentive and pharmaceutical meeting planners from North America, the Caribbean and Mexico, to attend the 2009 North American Hosted MICE Buyer Forum. Previously, de Leon was director of international meetings and incentives for St. Louis-based MAC Meetings & Events.
Ilsley launches LPI Events LLC
Linda Pierce Ilsley has established LPI Events LLC, a destination management and event services company based in both Clemmons and Raleigh, N.C. Prior to the launch, Ilsley served as vice president of destination management services for Sterling Events, also based in Clemmons. The company offers team-building activities, ground transportation, tours, themed events, event branding and entertainment options, among other services.
The Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau has appointed Arron Brooks as executive meetings manager for the Midwest and Eastern United States.
The Pasadena (Calif.) Convention Center, poised to complete an extensive $150 million expansion next month, has hired Doug Finney to serve as director of convention and catering services and Naz Sabripour as manager of events and catering services.
Minneapolis-based Carlson Hotels Worldwide has appointed Shelly Irrgang as vice president of sales for Radisson Hotels & Resorts, the Americas, and Lynn Messman as senior director of sales for Country Inns & Suites By Carlson.
Bill Marshall and Lynne Sanchez have been hired as sales managers for the 100-room Capella Telluride (Colo.), debuting this month.
Kathryn L. Van Brunt has been appointed director of sales at the Airlie Center, a conference facility. The property is based in Warrenton, Va.