MPIOC eNews – Fall 2017

President’s Message

Greetings MPIOC!

I hope that you had a relaxing summer! I would like to officially welcome you to the new term. As you recall this year we are celebrating 30 years as a chapter! The team has been working hard on great Educational Events, Social Gatherings, a new website, and a couple of fun surprises coming up in the next few weeks.At our Awards and Installation, I encouraged the membership to gather pearls of wisdom during our activities we have this year. In looking at everything that is planned this year for MPIOC I realized that it moves beyond just pearls of wisdom to include pearls of friendship and kindness.

I had the privilege of joining the Membership team at the Annual CHOC Walk in the Park on August 27th at the Disneyland Resort. It was a very early morning, but so worth it when one realizes the enormous effect a group has when it comes to giving back. Our MPIOC group looked beyond ourselves to give to kids in need. The act of giving should be an encouragement to us all. Our small, but mighty team was able to give pearls of kindness to a very deserving organization in our community.

So, as you gather your pearls of wisdom, be sure to also give pearls of kindness to one another. I encourage you to share your pearls this year through social media and our e-news updates. I look forward to seeing you soon at one of our many events this year!

Warmest Regards,

Heather Even, CMP, MA
MPIOC President, 2017-2018



Milestone MPI Members!

Please Join Us in Celebrating our July, August & September Milestone Members!

Congratulations on a Great First Year with MPIOC!

  • Sher Downing, Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa
  • Allison Nguyen, Marconi Automotive Museum & Foundation for Kids
  • Danielle Hebron, Dave and Buster’s
  • Melissa Loos, Patina Restaurant Group
  • Brian Penny, Tustin Ranch Golf Club
  • Eric Billings, In-N-Out Burger
  • Anand Gala, Famous Dave’s BBQ
  • Ina Lei, Orange Coast College
  • Charles Valentine, Las Vegas Sands Corp.
  • Kendra Carter
  • Edith Monroy Medina
  • Jennifer Vigiletti, Stargazer Productions
  • Sheena Paez, Endologix

Welcome New Members!

  • Katie Crain, Wyndham Anaheim Garden Grove
  • Robert Gessell-Flores, Anaheim Majestic Garden Hotel
  • Melanie Slosser

Congratulations to all!

Jhoanna Belfer, CMP
VP of Membership


Cheers to 30 Years!

Come celebrate MPIOC’s 30 years with your peers at Sea Legs at the Beach at Bolsa Chica State Beach. Casual dress, please! Flip-flops, beachy T’s and jeans are welcome for our Anniversary Beach Bash. Enjoy an evening on the sand of Huntington Beach with food, drinks, games and entertainment. REGISTER TODAY!


“OC” Our New MPIOC CMPs!

Congratulations to these seven new CMPs, graduates of our very own MPIOC CMP Study Group!

  • Jhoanna Belfer, Ayres Hotels
  • Christina Domino-Philpott, Hornblower Cruises & Events
  • Heather Even, Maple Street Management
  • Jackie Kuniyoshi, UC Irvine
  • Demea Metcalf, Destination Irvine
  • Michelle Sais, HSF Associates LLC
  • Cynthia Stearn, BCD Meetings & Events

Watch for our new CMP Study Group, coming this winter — raise your business profile by investing in this valuable industry certification.

Congratulations to our newest CMPs!

Mark Stewart
Director, Recruitment & Professional Development


Getting to Yes — September Event Recap

Our first educational event of the year was a fabulous success!

Our guest speaker, Michele Wierzgac, gave us the tools we need to “Win Stakeholder Support” for our ideas and got our members up and out of their seats.

After kicking off our 30th Anniversary Year in style at the Hilton Long Beach and with the generosity of our contributing sponsors, we’re very excited to see what the rest of the term has in store for our members!

Thank you to our wonderful sponsors:

PS: To see hundreds of event photos from this fun night, go to


3RD Annual MPIOC CHOC Walk Recap

A HUGE thank you to all who supported our MPIOC CHOC Walk 2017 Fundraising Team! Our 19 team members raised over $2,380 for CHOC Children’s Hospital, 40% more than we raised last year.

Bravo to Team Captain Brittney Terberg of Relevé Unlimited, Post-Walk Reception Sponsors Bruno Duarte of Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen and AnaLaura Becerra of AlliedPRA and all our Walkers!

A special shoutout to Mark Stewart of Cli Worldwide, who personally raised more than $400!

We hope you’ll join us in 2018!


2017 MPI World Educational Congress Experience
By Maureen Sloan, CTA
MPIOC Newsletter Chair

This past June, I attended my very first WEC as a hosted buyer. This year’s theme: STOP PLANNING MEETINGS, START CREATING EXPERIENCES, sure delivered. We had experience after experience at the luncheons, dinners and afterglow parties. Our So Cal Chapters were well represented and the turnout was the largest ever. It was wonderful networking with planners of all kinds and suppliers from all over the world to share ideas and make some new friends.

Based at the MGM Grand, there were many daily, offsite venues and hotels used to entertain, educate and wow attendees. One was The Fremont Street Party offering a glimpse at all the improvements, entertainment, hotels, attractions and innovative cuisines offered downtown in old Las Vegas, co-hosted by the Las Vegas Tourism Authority.

I was excited to hear later that I had won a 3-day Vegas getaway provided by The Fremont Street Experience which includes the following:

  • Round-trip airfare for 2
  • Round trip transportation from the airport
  • Choice of 3 days & 2 nights for either: Golden Nugget, The D, Plaza Hotel or Down Town G
  • Dinner each night at one of the hotels listed above.
  • Passes to the Mob Museum
  • Passes to Slotzilla (a zipline!)
  • Passes to Fear the Walking Dead Survival at Fremont Street Experience

While at the 4-day WEC the many valuable and inspirational educational breakout sessions were a highlight for me and worth enduring temps reaching up to 120 degrees! I was already grateful to have been able to attend, so to win a prize was a really nice surprise. The amazing speaker presentations, variety of trending topics, a useful app and the varied formats sent me home ready to work even harder.


Thanks for reading our Quarterly Newsletter!
Keep up with all our educational and social events by following us on Facebook and checking out our website at

In This Issue 

Presidents Message

Milestone MPIOC Members!

Cheers to 30 Years! MPIOC’s October Anniversary Beach Bash


September Event Recap

3RD Annual MPIOC CHOC Walk Recap

2017 MPI World Educational Congress Experience


Volunteer Opportunties

Become a volunteer and earn or share your #PearlsOfWisdom in this 30th Anniversary Year!
Want to know more? Email:

About Us

Meeting Professionals International, Orange County Chapter




MPIOC eNews – Fall 2017
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