The Incentive for Excellence

An Industry Blog on All Things SITE. Your one stop shop for chapter news, industry events, trends, and tips from the pros.

In Memoriam – Bill Biava

We are saddened to announce the passing of Bill Biava, husband to Kathy Biava, both of Universal Odyssey Inc., who died at his home in Newport Beach, CA on April 21 following a two year battle with cancer.

Bill was an engineer by trade but while looking to wind down his career, he joined his wife Kathy Biava, President, and daughters and took a consulting position at Universal Odyssey, Inc., a Travel and Incentive company. This quickly developed into full time, becoming CFO and enjoying every day of this 10 year position. With Universal Odyssey, Bill worked with the legends of Major League Baseball putting on Baseball Fantasy Camps for corporate executives, Race Car Driving Schools, and Rock & Roll Fantasy Camps. While helping manage many exciting Incentive and Convention programs worldwide, his favorite program was the Honda Hoot Motorcycle Rally with 18,000 attendees in the Great Smokey Mountains.

Condolences can be left on CaringBridge.com. In Lieu of flowers please donate to the Make a Wish Foundation.

All are welcome to join us in celebrating his life.

Tuesday May 3, 2016

Service at 1:00pm
Mariners Church Chapel (flowers may be sent here)
5001 Newport Coast Dr.
Irvine, CA 92603

Reception to follow at
Balboa Yacht Club
1801 Bayside Drive
Corona del Mar, CA 92625

If you plan on attending, please email ; text 949-244-5904, 949-244-5904, or on www.CaringBridge.com under Bill Biava.

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New Member Spotlight – Ciara Franklin

Ciara Franklin, AZA Events, Inc.Name: Ciara Franklin

Organization: AZA Events, Inc. (Destination + Event Management)

Quick Bio: A Phoenix native, recently relocated to San Diego, CA to expand AZA Event’s services throughout Southern California. With a background in both tourism and meeting planning, graduating from Arizona State University in Tourism Development and Management. Passionate about family, hiking, her rescue pup, Jackson, and her career.

What is your favorite part of being a new SITE member? Meeting new people!

What are you hoping to gain from being a SITE member? To learn more about the San Diego industry, to make friends in the community, and to become more familiar with vendors and meeting planner partners.

Why did you decide to work in the incentive travel industry? To allow people to see and experience the beautiful destinations that I service (Arizona and Southern California) in a fun, exciting way!

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New Member Spotlight – Michael “Mikel” Staton

Michael “Mikel” Staton, LuxpitalityName: Michael “Mikel” Staton

Organization: Luxpitality

Quick Bio: Originally from the East Coast, I lived in most of the major cities there like Boston, New York and DC! I moved here in 2008 working for the Hilton at the time. I just finished the Meeting & Event Planning Professional Certificate Program at San Diego State University.

What is your favorite part of being a new SITE member? Galas, Meeting, Educational Seminars and a chance to volunteer.

What are you hoping to gain from being a SITE member? As a newcomer to the area and this niche market I want to align myself with mentors and gain as much education possible.

Why did you decide to work in the incentive travel industry? There’s nothing more rewarding than to be a part of a vision and place a group with the ideal venue and city for attendees to enjoy all the local experiences and culture.

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New Member Spotlight – Joe Marcy

Joe Marcy, CMP, Monterey County CVBName: Joe Marcy, CMP, Regional Sales Executive

Organization: Monterey County CVB

Quick Bio: Born and raised in Manhattan Beach, CA. Has worked for Starwood and CVBs in the past. Loves the industry and the people. Will be the 2017-2018 President of MPI Southern CA.

What is your favorite part of being a new SITE member? Love the experiences that SITE creates for its members. Excited to be a part of it.

What are you hoping to gain from being a SITE member? Build relationships and get more involved with the chapter.

Why did you decide to work in the incentive travel industry? Really enjoy all aspects of the hospitality industry.

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New Member Spotlight – Linda Nguyen

Linda Nguyen, Hotel Indigo San Diego Gaslamp QuarterName: Linda Nguyen

Organization: Hotel Indigo San Diego Gaslamp Quarter

Quick Bio: I recently moved from Atlanta to San Diego and started my role at the Hotel Indigo Gaslamp Quarter last year. Previously I worked with Starwood for five years and Marriott for one.

What is your favorite part of being a new SITE member? New connections and the continuation of being a part of the Incentive Travel world.

What are you hoping to gain from being a SITE member? The opportunity to meet new people in the industry.

Why did you decide to work in the incentive travel industry? To stay connected and to learn more about the Incentive community.

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