Donna Karl Sakelakos
Donna Karl Sakelakos, CMP, has been named director of event services — supervising the planning and execution of all events — at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Karl Sakelakos, who will head a team of nine event services managers and coordinators, most recently served as vice president of event operations for Tradeshow Logic, where she launched the meetings division. She was previously the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau’s vice president of client relations from 2004–2012.
Laura Daniel, CMP, has been hired as a global account executive at ConferenceDirect. She joins Los Angeles–based meetings-solutions company from Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, where she spent 13 years in sales. At Fairmont, Daniel was recognized as one of the company’s top producers, receiving the prestigious President’s Circle award eight times.
Visit Tampa Bay has named Kathryn Morgan regional account director, based in Washington, D.C. In her new role, Morgan promotes Tampa Bay as a meeting destination to event planners and organizers in the Mid-Atlantic region (Virginia, Maryland, and D.C.), including 16,000 professional associations, corporations, and social/fraternal/religious groups and the federal government. She joins Visit Tampa Bay after several years as the D.C.-based representative for Visit Indy, and before that, San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Cynthia Decker and B. Todd Holloman
Cynthia Decker and B. Todd Holloman have joined Houston First Corporation as vice president of sales revenue and marketing strategy, and director of convention services at the George R. Brown Convention Center (GRB), respectively. Decker’s most-recent position was vice president of revenue management with American Liberty Hospitality. Holloman served as the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee’s vice president and executive producer for Super Bowl Live, and was hired to succeed John Gonzalez, who was promoted to vice president of the GRB earlier this year. Houston First owns the Hilton Americas-Houston hotel, and manages the GRB and 11 city-owned properties, and partners with Visit Houston to market Houston.
Visit Phoenix has appointed Ronnie Collins director of sales for the convention sales team. He takes over for Lorne Edwards, who served in that role before his promotion to vice president of sales and services. Collins was most recently director of sales and marketing for the newly opened Hilton Cleveland Downtown, which is attached to the Cleveland Convention Center, and has held the role of director of sales and marketing for various Hilton and Starwood properties in the southwestern U.S.