California State University, Chico, majoring in sociology
FIRST INDUSTRY JOB
Production assistant for a meetings production company called InVision Communications. I had been injured as a firefighter, and my roommate in San Francisco who worked for InVision asked if I had a passport. I said yes, and the next day we flew to Korea, to a small island off the coast called Jeju Island, for an incentive program for Oracle Corp.
MOST INFLUENCED IN MY CAREER BY
WHAT I LEARNED FROM HIM
Working hard makes the difference, but always keep your sense of humor. Bob McAllen was my father, who had a corporate video-production company. He was the cleverest sales and marketing person, creative director, and speaker I have ever known. He also worked in the financial industry, real estate, and did sales at several places while I was growing up. You can see why I basically run three companies. It is in our blood.
FAVORITE THING ABOUT MY JOB
Every show or project is different, and finding creative ways to engage audiences is just plain fun. The people in the meetings industry are the hardest workers, plus they have a great understanding of how to have fun.
ADVICE FOR YOUNG MEETING PROFESSIONALS
Open your eyes to all the different niches and opportunities in the meetings industry. I was attracted to the business after eight years in the fire service, fighting fires and helping people. When you rolled up on a house on fire, you didn’t know what you’d find in there. You basically have the same thing when you roll up to a new venue to produce a meeting. You might have clients who feel the place is going to burn down, but relying on your team, your training, and experience, you get through it.
I really enjoy all the Marvel superhero movies (“Iron Man,” “Captain America,” “Guardians of the Galaxy”).
Lonesome Dove (fun); Linchpin (business)
Coloma, California — Sierras for hiking, skiing, whitewater rafting, kayaking, and swimming in the American River.