August 01, 2001
Meetings & Conventions: People August 2001

Current Issue
August 2001 people

Edited by Jennifer Philburn

  Coffee With...Mary Lokerson

Jody Barrett, CMP

Mary Lokerson is assistant director of membership services at the Alexandria, Va.-based National Insulation Association, a post she has held for the past two years. Among her other duties, she plans the association’s 500-attendee annual meeting. Previously, she worked as a travel agent.

Have any past jobs helped you in your present position? Waitressing in college. I learned you have to keep a smile on your face and think, “The next table will be better.” As long as you keep smiling, things will work out.

What advice would you give to someone about to start a career in meeting planning? Get a good mentor. I’m still in the learning stage, and my boss, Michele Jones [vice president of marketing and operations], has been wonderful.

What are your long-term goals? To get my CMP, and to keep my attendees happy.

How do you deal with the stresses of your job? Humor. Never lose your sense of humor. One year, we rewrote the lyrics of “12 Days of Christmas” to “12 Convention Mishaps.”

What did the partridge in a pear tree become? Attendees who miss cutoff dates and want to know why we can’t accommodate them.

What song would make a good meeting planner’s anthem? Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go.” We go from 6:00 a.m. to midnight during our annual meeting. Another good song: “Celebrate,” for when the meeting is over.

• Martha Cooke

Grey Separator LineON THE MOVE


Star Trax hires two project managers
Rae Gold and Nicole Muchnick have joined Star Trax Corporate Events as project managers. Gold’s background is in travel consulting, while Muchnick comes to the industry from a career as an attorney. Both will work on various national accounts, producing corporate events, meetings and seminars for the Southfield, Mich.-based events management firm.

ProActive Inc. welcomes new account executives
Chicago-based ProActive Inc., a manager and producer of meetings and events, has added two new account executives to its team. Terry Castre was formerly director of sales at Audio Visual Headquarters, while Andrew Patellaro most recently served as business development manager at McGettigan Partners.

  • Carey Bachman has been appointed national sales manager/conventions at the Circus Circus Hotel & Casino in Reno, Nev.
  • Beth Campion has been appointed vice president of sales and marketing at the Norfolk Convention & Visitors Bureau in Norfolk, Va.
  • Stewart F. Davis has been named director of sales and marketing at the Hilton Seelbach, the landmark hotel in Louisville, Ky.
  • Steve Ferency has been hired as national sales manager at the Vail (Colo.) Cascade Resort & Spa.
  • Jennifer SanFilippo, CMP, has been named manager of meetings and incentives for Air France. She is based in the airline’s New York City office.
  • Jay Smith has been named director of group sales at the Century Plaza Hotel & Spa in Los Angeles.
  • Drew Toth has joined the Tampa, Fla., office of HelmsBriscoe as vice president. Toth will be responsible for client development and will oversee nine regional offices in the eastern United States.
  • If you would like notice of a career move considered for inclusion in this column, contact Jennifer Philburn, People Page, M&C, 500 Plaza Dr., Secaucus, N.J. 07094; fax: (201) 319-1796; e-mail:
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