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Huntington Place and Visit Detroit Teams
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Introducing the Huntington Place & Visit Detroit Teams 

(Pictured above from ECN’s Q1 cover: The dedicated, motivated and united teams of Visit Detroit and Huntington Place, L-R, front row: Claude Molinari, Greg Brannan, Karen Totaro, Sheila Neal, Greg DeSandy, Yolanda Cason and David Austin; back row: Jennifer Berkemeier, Susan Richardson, Andrea Cadotto, Jennifer Neal-Miller and Constance Wilson.)

Spotlight on Huntington Place: Working Together to Keep Motor City Humming! (Part 1)

The Visit Detroit and Huntington Place teams have spent the last two years feeling like they were “in the pit” but they are ready to get the motor in Motor City humming and back on the track! Introducing the people behind the scenes working to bring conventions, meetings, conferences and live events back to Detroit.

KarenTotaro_TCF CenterKaren Totaro

General Manager

Karen Totaro is the general manager of Huntington Place and is responsible for the overall management, promotion and operation of the facilities, leading the team of dedicated professionals in the venue, building on the key industry partnerships in the community, and supporting the overall mission of the Huntington Place and the DRCFA.

Totaro comes to Huntington Place from the San Diego Convention Center where she served as chief operating officer. Prior to San Diego, she served as general manager of the Atlantic City Convention Center, assistant general manager of the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati and the assistant executive director at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland.

Having received a BS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Totaro is also a certified venue executive through the International Association of Venue Managers as well as a graduate from their Academy of Venue Safety and Security.

Greg DeSandy Huntington PlaceGreg DeSandy

Director of Sales and Event Services

Greg DeSandy is the director of sales and event services for Huntington Place and responsible for maximizing the rental and promoting the use of Huntington Place meetings and events by representing TCF to all clients and customers. He directs the sales team, sales strategy, business development and sales analysis while overseeing all aspects of event service delivery.

DeSandy comes to Huntington Place from the Marriott at the convention center in Augusta, Georgia, where he served asdirector of sales and marketing since 2004. With extensive experience in the event and hospitality industry directing various Radisson and Marriott properties across the country, he received his BA from Michigan State University.

David Austin Huntington PlaceDavid Austin

Senior Sales Manager

David Austin has been with the TCF sales team since 2003, and is responsible for lead generation, qualification and solicitation of specific meetings and events. He prepares event contracts and proposals with clients to finalize booking arrangements.

Austin has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Valparaiso University in Valparaiso, Indiana, and a Masters in Sports Management from the U.S. Sports Academy in Daphe, Alabama. He is a member of the Michigan Society of Association Executives, the Meeting Professionals International and MPI Michigan Chapter, the International Association for Exhibition and Events, the American Society of Association Executives and the Association for Convention Marketing Executives.

Jennifer Berkemeier Huntington PlaceJennifer Berkemeier 

Event Sales Manager

Jennifer Berkemeier is an event sales manager for Huntington Place. She actively solicits new business to promote the venue while facilitating proper execution of the events. Collaborates with industry organizations producing proposals, contracts, event orders and billing related correspondence. Jennifer has a Bachelor of Arts from Michigan State University and has 15 years experience in the event industry.

Constance Wilson Huntington PlaceConstance Wilson

Sales Manager

Constance Wilson has been with the convention center for 12 years and worked for the City of Detroit prior to that. She is responsible for national and local Michigan markets lead generation, qualification and solicitation of business. She prepares event contracts and proposals with clients to finalize booking arrangements. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Management and Organizational Development from Spring Harbor University in Michigan.

This story originally appeared in the special section, Spotlight on Huntington Place, in the Jan./Feb./Mar. 2022 issue of Exhibit City News, p. 28. For original layout, visit https://issuu.com/exhibitcitynews/docs/ecn_q1_2022. The Visit Detroit team will be featured in next week’s installment.

 

 

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