Ovation Global DMC is delighted to name Sue Pelletier winner of the 2013 Ovation Huggabilty Award. The announcement was made on October 16th 2013 at IMEX America, Las Vegas.

Writer/Editor at Penton Media, Boston-based Sue was nominated for being ‘bright, intelligent and cultured’ and for ‘delivering great content to the meetings industry for many years’. With a career to date spanning offline and online journalism, Sue’s expertise is well-honed and extremely well utilised. She is well known within the meetings industry as a journalist who asks the right questions and is a thought leader, especially in relation to medical meetings and religious conferences.

2013 Shortlist

Convention bureaus, venues, industry media…the 2013 shortlist is as diverse in backgrounds as it is in geography.


Andrew SwanstonAndrew Swanston (ExCel London)
Andrew is the type of person that makes you feel a million dollars just by being in his company. This applies to his colleagues and clients – his warm welcome and commitment to outstanding customer service is the reason why he has achieved fantastic results, not only for ExCeL but London as a whole. As he starts a new and exciting chapter of his career in the US, the team at ExCel London will really miss his energy and enthusiasm; his new colleagues across the pond will enjoy having him around. The team at ExCel London think Ovation Bear could look out for him, document his travels around The States and be a constant reminder of why he is a great ambassador and role model for our industry. His tireless commitment and dedication to his role has opened the door to a new and exciting chapter in the States – if you work in the US and you don’t already know Andrew Swanston, you soon will!

Guendalina Rampazzi

Guendalina Rampazzi (Switzerland Convention and Incentive Bureau)
Guendi’s passion for our industry and for all things Switzerland is truly admirable. This year, as well as her day job in SCIB, she has been working extra hard to achieve an MBA qualification – this dedication deserves a hug!



Lynne Schuler

Lynne Schueler (Principal Financial Group)
It’s impossible to list all the reasons why Lynne deserves the 2013 Huggability Award. She is a wonderful person, her attention to detail and care for others is immaculate and she definitely deserves the biggest hug in the world….actually it’s impossible not to hug her!



Miguel Neves

Miguel Neves (IMEX Group)
Social Media savvy and a charmer to boot, I always take notice and say hello when I spot Miguel at industry events or online. He’s the friendly face of our industry.




Paul Miller

Paul Miller (Managing Director, Spectra DMC)
Paul has been a stalwart of the DMC world for more than two decades and has contributed enormously to our sector in that time due to his uncompromising professionalism, his clarity of vision and his fundamental decency. He also deserves a hug for pursuing his dreams and making time to record his wonderful songs. Oh, and he’s going to be hugging his way around the globe as Site President in 2014.




2013 Nominees

In no particular order, here is the longlist of our 2013 nominees…they’re extremely huggable too!

David Sand (Uwin Iwin)
David’s tireless work for Site over the years culminated in him being named Site President 2013. Since he has taken up this role, his work on behalf of Site has been super-human; he has helped raise awareness of Site in Asia, Middle East and Africa. Attending industry events across the globe week-in-week-out, his huggability factor has rocketed this year. One nominator describes David as a ‘Ted’ film character rather than a standalone standalone teddy bear!

Diana Wolf (Ovation Spain)
I have never received such AMAZING customer service. Diana processed a last minute request and coordinated a large event for 1,500 people with minimal lead time and her execution was absolutely flawless.

Dale Hudson (Knowledge and Events Director, IMEX Group)
Dale’s passion for promoting the benefits of green meetings and CSR within our industry means she is quite literally a force of nature – just try saying no to her when she really, really cares about a project and wants to make it happen! IMEX is great at having big ideas but it’s people like Dale who have to find the energy, enthusiasm and drive to make them happen, which is no small order in a truly global marketplace. She manages all of this while juggling family life too. Phew! If there was ever anyone who epitomised a ‘care bear’ and deserved a huge hug to acknowledge her on-going and passionate efforts to transform attitudes to green meetings and the importance of giving back (CSR), it’s Dale.

Paul Kennedy (Meetings Industry Consultant)
I would like to nominate Paul Kennedy for Huggability 2013 because I believe he deserves a huge hug for his overall contribution to the meetings industry over the years in various guises. He has brought great passion, energy and intelligence to all the roles that he has filled and the meetings industry is a better place thanks to his input. Paul has also been nominated for his contributions on the Economic Impact Studies.

Dan Tavrytzky (DMC Network)
Managing Director of DMC Network, LLC, Dan’s open and huggable nature is reflected in his work heading up a network of DMCs across North America. I want to nominate him because when he takes on a project, he sees it though from start to finish and stays involved throughout. In short, Dan is the man!

Chris Baker, DMCN (Chicago Travel Consultants)
You always know what to expect when you work with Chris: reliable delivery, outstanding attention to detail and a positive attitude. He is the quintessential professional and makes everyone’s job easier by doing his superbly.

Paul Eder (Protective Life)
Paul is already one of the most hugged and loved individuals in the Meetings and Events Industry and it’s easy to see why. He puts people and relationship first, before everything, and values everyone as a person, irrespective of who they are or how they rank. He is also industry professional of great vision and creativity who has operated scintillating incentive events all over the world overseeing a team of vendors whose loyalty to him is legendary.

Jon Bradshaw (Meetology Group)
Following The Meetology Group – of which Jon is CEO – on Twitter is a must for any meeting planner or events professional. The daily pearls of wisdom which Jon feeds out via the @meetology handle on Twitter are thought provoking and always leave me inspired to run more effective meetings.

Alison Hall (MeetingsNet)
Alison is a savvy journalist and an all-round nice person who has been tireless in her efforts to highlight the contribution and real value of the meetings industry to the corporate world.

Alexandra Ferreira Dos Santos (MCI Italy)
She is the best solving any technical problem in the office…the only thing that supersedes her technical know-how is her first-rate character. Alexandra is very professional and you can count on her!

Pam Huver (Amway US)
An industry veteran, Pam has been described as ‘old school and honest, with un-equalled sincerity.’ Her nominator also cited Pam’s ability to welcome and mentor less experienced professionals as an impressive trait.

Angela Kipling (Kipling Events)
Proactive on site, passionate about Greece and an all-round good egg, Angela deserves to be Ovation’s most huggable person. Anyone who works with Angela will, of course, confirm how professional she is but also how magnetic her personality is.

Emma Boyd (MCI Amsterdam)
An endless source of vitality and passion, Emma is known amongst her colleagues and clients as a professional who ‘takes the world on by smiling every second of every day.’ Having her on a project team really boosts morale; if only you could bottle and sell her personality…

Joan Eisenstodt (Joan Eisenstodt Associates)
Joan is many things to many people: she’s an educator, a mentor and a tireless advocate for social justice. She’s ethical, innovative and irrepressible. In fact, she’s my favorite lovable pain in the ass because she is always questioning, emailing, sharing and challenging me and others in the industry to defend what we believe. She asks big questions that other people would be too afraid or polite to ask. Every time I talk with her, I learn something. And that’s why I think she deserves a big old hug.