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You may know David Kliman as a facilitator of major customer ad- visory boards, an expert on international meetings, a frequent speaker
at industry events and/or a leader in
organizations such as MPI, but his
climb up had modest beginnings.
“I came right out of college and I
wanted a job in the travel industry,
and I literally walked into the Plaza
Hotel in New York and said I wanted
to be in international sales, and they
said ‘You and everyone else.’” Kliman
said. “I got the glamorous job working
as a reservations agent—taking telephone and telex reservations.
“A year later I got an international
sales job and I was on a jet to Rio,”
he added. “I was just a lucky guy at
the right time and in the right place.”
Six years after that Kliman was court-
ed by the CEO of American Express to
be a meeting planner just as the compa-
ny was spinning off its Fireman’s Fund
insurance unit into a public company,
with a mission to centralize its meetings
and travel department. Next it was a pro-
motion to an executive position as vice
president, corporate communications.
Kliman came to run his own
company facilitating think tanks and
advisory boards for major DMOs,
trade associations, convention cen-
ters and hotel companies following a
discussion with then-MPI President
and CEO Bruce MacMillan and PCMA
President and CEO Deborah Sexton at
PCMA’s annual conference.
His current roster of clients
includes major organizations such as
the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors
Authority, Hyatt Hotels Corporation
and Cvent, among many others.
And the advice he would give to
someone just starting out?
“My grandfather and father said nurture every relationship,” Kliman said.
Visit Phoenix promoted
LORNE EDWARDS to
vice president of sales and
services. Edwards joined
Visit Phoenix five years ago
as director of sales after a 16-
year career at Hyatt Hotels
Corporation. In his new role,
Edwards will guide the organization’s national strategic
sales and services initiatives.
Edwards’ industry memberships and affiliations include American Society of Association
Executives, Professional Convention Management
Association and Destination Marketing Association
International. Edwards has also served in a DMO
advisory capacity for American Express Meetings & Events
Hilton Anatole appointed
RIGOBERTO LEMUS as the
property’s new executive chef.
In this role, Lemus will oversee
culinary teams and menu
development at the hotel,
including SER Steak + Spirits
on the 27th floor, Media Bar & Grille and the hotel’s
catering and banquets.
Lemus joins the Hilton Anatole most recently
from the Gaylord National Resort and Convention
Center in Washington, D.C., where he also served
as executive chef.
The 1,606-room hotel in the Dallas Design District
offers 500,000 square feet of event space, including
11 ballrooms and 79 meeting rooms as well as a
private sculpture park that
can be used for outdoor
The Walt Disney World
Swan and Dolphin Resort
named AARON WEEGAR as
new director of sales. Weegar
will be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day efforts
of the resort’s sales team at
the 2,267-room property.
Weegar returns to the property having previously served as the resort’s account director for the
Northeast market and most recently he was the
director of sales at The Diplomat in Ft. Lauderdale.
Weegar has more than 10 years of hospitality
sales experience and is a graduate of The University
of Findlay in Ohio.
The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort
is nearing completion of a $140 million renovation.
The hotel offers 2,267 guest rooms and over 329,000
square feet of meeting space consisting of 84 meeting rooms.
LINDSAY BUCHANAN, CMP,
joined Travelink, American
Express Travel in 2011 and
has steadily worked her way
up within the company. She
is currently manager of the
Meetings & Conferences,
Association Management and
Group Travel departments
based in the Nashville Corporate Headquarters.
In her tenure at Travelink American Express Travel,
Buchanan achieved her Certified Meeting Planner
designation in 2013 and her Certified Event Management Professional with Cvent in 2015.
She is an active member of MPI, ASTA and ASTA’s Young Professional’s Society. At Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn., she received her Bachelors of Science in Audio and Video Production with
a minor in Mass Communication Operations.
DAVID KLIMAN // PRESIDENT
THE KLIMAN GROUP
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