PHOENIX (Oct. 19, 2016) — Michele Lawrie has joined Visit Phoenix’s convention sales team as Director of National Accounts for the Greater Chicago region.

Lawrie, a Chicago native, comes to Visit Phoenix after serving for three years as Senior Manager of Meeting Services at the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS). Prior to that, she spent 14 years in the sales division of Hyatt Hotels Corporation–including the last seven as Director of Worldwide Accounts in Chicago.

“Michele brings to our sales team a wealth of sales experience and leadership, both as a supplier with Hyatt Hotels in a global sales capacity, as well as a senior meeting planner with HIMSS,” said Visit Phoenix Director of Sales Lorne Edwards. “Her multifaceted and diverse industry background will serve our interests well within the Greater Chicagoland area.”  

At HIMSS, Lawrie managed logistics for more than 300 concurrent events and sessions at the organization’s annual Conference & Exhibition, which draws more than 40,000 attendees each year. She also was responsible for managing the conference’s $6 million annual budget as well as its block of 22,000 peak room nights.

Lawrie began her hospitality career in 1999 as a sales manager at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Chicago before being elevated to a senior sales position at the iconic Hyatt Regency Chicago.  From there, Lawrie was promoted to Director of Worldwide Accounts, in which capacity she was directly responsible for managing more than $30 million in revenue for top association and corporate accounts in Chicago and throughout the Midwest.

Lawrie will remain based in Chicago in her new role with Visit Phoenix.

Lawrie received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Hospitality Management from the University of Illinois. Her industry memberships and affiliations include the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) and Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI).

Lawrie enjoys traveling, experiencing Chicago’s latest hot spots and foodie hangouts, and spending time with her husband and son.