People Update

June 28, 2011


Columbia CVB Welcomes New Staff

TumaAmyAmy Tuma joined the Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau as the Outside Convention Sales Manager in March 2011. Tuma’s main responsibility is to work in tandem with the Inside Convention Sales Manager to promote Columbia to convention and meeting planners. As part of her sales responsibilities, Tuma makes outside sales calls to prospective clients, generates sales leads to hotels, responds to meeting planner requests, attends tradeshows and other outside marketing opportunities to represent Columbia, arranges and conducts site visits for clients, and presents bids and proposals to potential clients. Tuma also serves as the CVB liaison to the Society for Government Meeting Professionals, Missouri Society of Association Executives, the Tiger Quarterback Club and Emerging Professionals in Columbia.

CraneTerraTerra Crane joined the Convention and Visitors Bureau in December 2008 as an administrative assistant and was recently promoted to Convention Services Manager. Once a convention or meeting is booked in Columbia, Crane’s task is to make sure they are welcomed and taken care of during their time in town.

As Convention Services Manager, Terra coordinates customized service packages for conventions, meetings and conferences in Columbia. Services can range from a welcome cake and a banner to mayoral welcomes and other on-site services. She also responds to walk-in inquiries from planners, generates monthly requests to hotels about groups that may need to be serviced, and produces pickup requests for hotels.


QuinliskKellyThe Conference Center at Innsbrook has announced the addition of Kelly Quinlisk as the Conference Sales Manager. Quinlisk, a graduate from the University of Missouri – St. Louis, has more than 20 years of experience in meeting and event planning. Her professional experience ranges from marketing and sales operations to planning events in both the commercial and private sectors.

She worked for Direct Response Insurance Company and National Casualty Company where she was accredited in many educational programs. She was also the recipient of the St. Charles’ 2009 Volunteer of the Year award for her work in the Crisis Nursery.

With her event planning background, Quinlisk is in tune to the needs of meeting planners and focuses on bringing their vision to life.

For more information booking at meeting at The Center at Innsbrook, call
636-928-3366 ext. 804, e-mail Kelly at [email protected] or visit


The St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission (CVC) has hired Jani Torrence as National Convention Sales Manager. She will specialize in midsize single hotel and select city-wide convention business from association clients based primarily in the Midwest and Southwest United States.

Torrence joins the CVC after spending two years as a corporate sales manager with the Greater St. Charles Convention & Visitors Bureau. Prior to that, she spent five years as the Trade Association
and Government Sales Manager for JQH Hotels & Resorts, Inc., in Springfield, Missouri. Her background also includes stints in television news production at Decatur, Illinois’ WAND-TV, and Denison, Texas’ KTEN-TV.

Torrence has a Master of Science in Mass Communication and Journalism from Texas Christian University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Broadcast Journalism from Webster University.

Global Spectrum’s Angie Teel Receives Certified Meeting Planner Designation from Convention Industry Council

TeelAngieAngie Teel, Event Manager for Global Spectrum at the Saint Charles Convention Center, has received her Certified Meeting Planner (CMP) designation by the Convention Industry Council. The foremost certification of the meetings, conventions and exhibitions industry, the CMP program recognizes individuals who have achieved the industry’s highest standard of professionalism.

Through the CMP program, individuals who are employed in meeting management pursue continuing education, increase their industry involvement, and gain industry-wide recognition. The requirements for certification are based on professional experience and a written examination.

Teel becomes one of more than 13,000 individuals in 35 countries and territories to have earned the CMP designation.

Teel has previously worked as an Event Promotions Coordinator for Clear Channel Radio and a marketing and sales assistant at NASCAR SpeedPark. She now works as an event manager at the convention center where she coordinates logistics for a variety of events, including meetings, trade shows, consumer shows and other special events.

Steven Becker Fine Dining Announces New Staff

YoungBryanBryan Young, former owner of Catering Plus, has joined Steven Becker Fine Dining and will be responsible for business development of off-premise catering.

Young’s career began as the dining room and catering manager for Café Balaban from 1976 until 1994. In 1995, he opened his own catering company, Catering Plus. Young grew the business to become one of the top catering companies in St. Louis. Unfortunately, due to the difficult economic climate that is affecting so many businesses, Catering Plus recently closed its doors.

With Young’s extensive background in catering and event planning, and his wonderful reputation in St. Louis, the Steven Becker Fine Dining team is looking forward to working with him to grow its off-premise catering division. For more information, call (314) 367-4848, ext. 101 or visit

Springfield CVB Presents Travel & Tourism Awards The Springfield Convention & Visitors

Bureau presented its 2011 Salute to Travel & Tourism awards Thursday, Feb. 17, 2011, at the University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center. Award recipients are:

Pinnacle Award: Dr. Thomas and Karen Sweeney, founders of Sweeny’s Museum of Civil War History. The Pinnacle Award is for individuals who have been active in the travel industry for many years and have made substantial contributions to the betterment of the Springfield area’s travel industry.

Ambassador Award: Bass Pro Outdoor Fitness Festival. The Ambassador Award is presented to individuals or organizations that generate significant economic impact for the area by working to encourage tourism or secure a major convention or event in Springfield.

Hospitality Award: Cooper Tennis Complex. The Hospitality Award is presented to an attraction, lodging facility or restaurant that demonstrates outstanding hospitality to the traveling public and exhibits a team spirit in promoting growth of Springfield area travel and tourism.

Spotlight Award: Askinosie Chocolate. The Spotlight Award is presented to an individual, business or organization not usually considered part of the travel and tourism industry for noteworthy contributions in advancing travel and tourism in the Springfield area.

Diplomat Award: Missouri Department of Transportation. The Diplomat
Award is presented to a government official, organization or employee who
has provided significant support to the Springfield area travel industry.

The bureau also presented Decade of Service awards to volunteers who have served the CVB for 10 years. They are: Dean and Darlene McAnally, Mary Ellen White, JoAnn Wiksten, Jim and Beverly Wilson, Naomi Young and Jerry and Judy Young.

Industry Professionals Complete Rigorous Certification Program

Congratulations to the following professionals in Missouri who have obtained a certification in Certified Meetings Management (CMM) through Meeting Professionals International (MPI):

• Joy Millard, CMM, University of Missouri

• Kendra Murray, CMM, Account Service Group, Inc.

• Kathy Thompson, CMP, CMM, Bushnell Outdoor Products

MPI’s CMM educational program provides experienced and highly accomplished members of our global meeting industry community the opportunity for personal career advancement and professional recognition. For more information on the CMM designation, and access to more than 130 hours of CEU-eligible content, visit

SLAHA and HSMAI Present Annual Hospitality AwardsSLAHA 027BW1

The St. Louis Area Hotel Association (SLAHA), together with the HSMAI – Missouri Chapter, presented the 6th Annual Hospitality Professional Awards on Tuesday, March 1, 2011 at the Lumière Place Casino & Hotels. Congratulations to the 2011 winners!

Industry Supplier Professional Recognition: Swank Audio Visuals

Technical Professional Recognition: Kyle Kersting – Renaissance Grand Hotel & Suites

Administrative Professional: Sohan Fernandes – The Ritz-Carlton St. Louis

Industry Volunteer Professional: Julie Krull – Destination St. Louis

Human Resources & Training Professional: Jennifer Heinrich – Renaissance St. Louis Airport

Facility Maintenance Professional: Dennis Sanders – St. Louis CVC

Housekeeping Professional: Gary Sykes – Drury Plaza Hotel

Guest Services Professional: Sara Aker – The Westin St. Louis

Revenue Management Professional: Deana LaRue – Lumière Place
Casino & Hotel

Event Services Professional: Bruce Ruggiero – Renaissance Grand & Suites

Food & Beverage Professional: Elizabeth Barnhart – Crowne Plaza Downtown

Accounting Professional: Neil Palacios – St. Louis CVC

Sales & Marketing Professional: Christie Pink – St. Louis Union Station Marriott

General Manager: Joe Bryson – Lumière Place Casino & Hotel





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The MEET® Family of Publications

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