by Morton D. Rosenbaum | August 01, 2005

Wegge joins MAC Meetings and Events
Heather Wegge has been hired as trade show manager by St. Louis-based planning firm MAC Meetings and Events. Wegge comes straight from a post as director of conventions and meetings for the Chesterfield, Mo.-based National Wood Flooring Association.

Jennifer Alexander, CMP, is the new senior sales manager for
the Marco Island (Fla.) Marriott Resort, Golf Club and Spa.
Brad Barnett joins the KOR Hotel Group as area director of sales, Los Angeles.
Karime Buraye has joined the Garden City Hotel in Long Island, N.Y., as director of sales. 
Steve Cohen has been named the senior catering and conference services manager for the Grand Wailea (Hawaii) Resort. Pepper Teresa Dombroski is now director of group sales. 
Jennifer Fricke has joined the Scottsdale (Ariz.) Convention & Visitors Bureau as national sales manager for the Northeast.
Damien Keller has been named director of sales and marketing for San Francisco’s Orchard Hotel. 
Kirk Landry is the new convention sales manager for the New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau. 
Deirdre Lewis has joined the San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau as national sales manager, convention center accounts, with a focus on the medical meetings market. Jason Wolterstorff also joins as national sales manager, handling Midwest accounts outside of the convention center. 
Judy Ramirez has been named director of sales and marketing of The Jefferson, a Loews Hotel in Washington, D.C.
Todd R. Ryan is now director of sales and marketing for the Westin Riverwalk in San Antonio.
Noreen Shafer has been named concept services manager at the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa in Acme, Mich.
Alexandra J. Welch has been appointed director of sales for the Eden Roc Renaissance Resort & Spa in Miami Beach.
Kathy Werhan is director of regional sales for Georgia’s Sea Island Resort, focusing on the Southeast and the Midwest.

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Emily Whooley"It is really satisfying to see everyone reaching out and saying they need our help."

Emmy Whooley, based in Everett, Mass., has been the sole meeting manager for Tacoma, Wash.-based investment analysis firm Russell/Mellon for 13 years. She enjoyed her coffee (“Starbucks, definitely decaf”) from a home office littered with children and R/M-logoed baseball hats.

How did you start your meeting planning career? I came into Mellon as a trainer, instructing new hires about stocks and bonds and derivatives, mostly very boring stuff. My job as a planner started when they asked me to add meals to my training sessions. 

Do you ever get nostalgic for the old training? Never. Meeting planning is far more exciting. No matter how many times you do one meeting, it’s always a new place with new people. And obviously, there are always new challenges.

Such as? Oh, the weather. Just last fall, we had a hurricane at Hilton Head. It was definitely a downer, but we actually ended up pulling a great meeting out of it. No matter how well-traveled our clients are, they still enjoy every destination. They like their food; they like their giveaways.

What’s been the best giveaway so far? I could tell you the worst one. We had these terrific folding chairs to give out the kind you take to a concert or soccer game. We ended up having the conference the February after 9/11, though, and with the new carry-on restrictions nobody was going to take one of those home on an airplane. We had to give everyone a picture of the chair and then mail it to their home. They really did all love the chairs, and they liked having them mailed, but the picture that was unfortunate.