Karen Totaro, general manager for ASM Global, announced Becky Bixby is the new assistant general manager (AGM) of Huntington Place. Becky is certified in exhibition management (CEM) with 29 years of event experience in successfully leading teams in customer service training and new technology implementations.
The name Huntington Place was announced by Detroit’s convention center last month after Huntington merged with TCF Financial Corp. in June 2021, creating a top 10 regional bank. The new name signifies an important moment in the transformation of Detroit’s gathering place for events as the industry emerges from COVID-19 restrictions, and is attracting new business while participating in the rebuilding of the city and metropolitan area. The venue is the 16th largest convention center in the country.
As AGM of Huntington Place, Becky will be responsible for all day-to-day operational aspects of the venue with a key role in ensuring that all clients’ needs are understood and met. She will take point on working toward Platinum LEED certification and all sustainability initiatives that cross over multiple departments.
She will be assessing all emergency response plans and establishing safety and security measures to create organic and appropriate responses that secure public safety at all times. She will work toward resolving any client union or staffing concerns. She will ensure all operational departments are on track with their budgets and financial goals for the year.
“Becky brings a full 360 perspective to her new role as AGM. She has worked in venues, she has been the general services contractor building the show and she has been the actual show manager,” said Totaro. “We are so lucky to have her joining the team to ensure we exceed the customer experience from every angle.”
Previously, Becky served as senior manager, client services for Informa Markets, a company that delivers large-scale exhibitions, virtual events, online marketplaces, specialist content and data services to the global event industry. There she oversaw 20 tradeshows and more than 20 digital events comprising more than $150 million in revenue. Responsibilities included oversight of customer relationship management technologies, collaborating with outside vendors such as general service contractors, insurance agencies, registration, housing, fire marshal and health & safety departments, and developing improvements to event systems and customer experience.
Prior to Informa, Becky was vice president, exhibitor services for Freeman, a company that has been providing integrated event services around the globe for more than a century. Having been promoted four times within her tenure and graduated from the prestigious iLead leadership program with the organization, Becky managed customer service and processes across 22 branches producing $30 million shows with 10 service desks in 5 different venues.
“Becky will not only lead our operationally based departments, she will take point on several major cross venue projects, such as researching and creating an RFQ for a new complete event-based software system from sales through to invoicing and then overseeing implementation and training,” says Totaro. “Becky has the experience and ability to break down major hurdles into manageable bites.”
Becky has been a member of several industry associations, including the International Association of Exhibitions and Events and the International Association of Venue Managers. She holds an M.A. in communications and a certification in the executive education program for influence and negotiations strategies at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
“I’m thrilled to be joining the amazing team at Huntington Place,” said Bixby. “It’s an exciting time to be working at such a beautiful venue and to be a part of the community within the city of Detroit.”