ICCA’s Board of Directors has named Senthil Gopinath, the former regional director of ICCA Middle East, to serve as the organization’s new CEO, effective this month.
“Senthil brings the qualities that we most need in a leader at this juncture,” James Rees, ICCA president and executive director of ExCeL London, said in a release. “Throughout his career, he has demonstrated not only that he can establish a vision, but also chart the tactical path to reach that vision, always working from a solid foundation of operational and financial expertise.”
For much of his two-decade career in business events, Gopinath has advocated for the strategic development of the global meetings industry. He is one of three finalists for Business Event Strategist of the Year at the 2019 PCMA Visionary Awards. He is recognized for ICCA Middle East’s industry education and advocacy work implemented during his directorship, which began in 2016.
Among other accomplishments in that role, he forged new relationships with regional governments and industry partners, and increased ICCA Middle East membership by more than 80 percent.
In his new role, Gopinath will develop annual business plans, and ensure operational sustainability and financial controls. He also will work to build ICCA’s global membership and presence with a special focus on developing member services in each of ICCA’s key regions. He will work from ICCA Head Office in Amsterdam and report to the president and Board of Directors.
“I am truly honored to be appointed for such a prestigious position in one of the global meetings industry’s leading organizations,” Gopinath said in a statement. “I have always cherished my involvement with ICCA and now being at the helm will enable me to listen more closely to our members and key stakeholders, and service them in a more enhanced manner, making ICCA more relevant to the global membership.”
The 2019 PCMA Visionary Awards take place May 7 at the Marriott Marquis in Washington D.C., where three Professional Excellence Award finalists in each of six categories will be recognized and the winners announced.
Curt Wagner is a Convene associate editor.