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Mhayse Samalya takes the role of executive chairman at Go West Creative.

Who’s News in Special Events for Jan. 30, 2020

Special events business news this week includes new management at Go West and Circa DMC.

Nashville, Tenn.-based Go West Creative, included on the latest Special Events “50 Top Event Companies,” has named Mhayse Samalya as executive chairman.

Circa DMC, based in San Antonio, has chosen Christopher McAnany as vice president of sales and operations.

Michael Manning has been named director of food and beverage at Live! by Loews in St. Louis, slated to open next month.

Lauren McDonald has taken the role of catering sales manager at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach.

Grandesign Experiential, a San Diego-based experiential marketing company, has announced the launch of its new brand, GDX Studios. GDX Studios is a full-service experiential marketing studio that takes a holistic approach to its services and engages consumers in bold and dynamic ways, creating buzz and driving customers to share their experiences, the company says.

Memphis, Tenn.-based LEO Events, included on the latest Special Events “50 Top Event Companies,” has announced seven new hires and eight employee promotions, as well as the addition of a digital division and a festivals and public events division. Laura Lines joins the corporate office as vice president of marketing and business development. The company’s new digital division will be led by Justin Maddox, one of the Special Events "25 Young Events Pros to Watch," who has been promoted to director of digital strategy. Within this division, LEO welcomes Dani Martin as project data coordinator and Leo Taylor as developer. LEO’s festivals and public events division, spearheaded by newly appointed director April Harbour, will oversee the execution of current programs including Mempho Music Festival and Double Decker in Oxford, Miss., as well as develop and launch nationwide public events. Within this division, LEO welcomes Erin Regrutto as senior event manager and announces the promotion of Emma Harrietha to project coordinator. In addition, LEO announces new hires to the production division: Megan Carolan, Amie Kiehn and Chelsea Tillman as production coordinators and Marshall Brewer as production assistant. Also, the following staffers have been promoted: Stacey Ladd to producer, Connie Middleton to production coordinator, Ruthie Rudnick to associate producer, Taylor Feeney to graphic designer, and Alex Gordon to events assistant.

Alex Cormier has been named director of food and beverage for Hotel Contessa, a AAA Four Diamond all-suite hotel in San Antonio on the city’s famed Riverwalk.

San Diego-based ACCESS, included on the latest Special Events “25 Top DMCs” list, has announced its expansion to Washington, headed by ACCESS partner Maria DiBenedetto.

NEP Sweetwater, based in Van Nuys, Calif., has announced that Bill Ingino has joined the company as manager of client and business development.

Evelyn Ramos has joined Blueprint Studios in its Las Vegas office as creative account manager.

Global DMC Partners, included on the latest Special Events "25 Top DMCs," has announced the expansion of its network with the addition of Innovatx Events, based in Austin, Texas.

The JW Marriott Anaheim [Calif.] Resort, slated to open in April, has named Scott Kimmel as director of food and beverage, and Amol Agarwal as executive chef.

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