HSMAI honors Top 25 Extraordinary Minds of 2022

The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association (HSMAI) has revealed its 20th class of the “best and brightest” in the hospitality industry with its list of the 2022 HSMAI Top 25 Extraordinary Minds in Sales, Marketing, Revenue Optimization and Distribution.

These 25 professionals, selected by a panel of senior industry executives, will be celebrated February 23, 2023 at the JW Marriott LA Live in Los Angeles in conjunction with the annual Adrian Awards Celebration.

HSMAI’s 2022 Top 25 Extraordinary Minds not only adapted to the post-COVID travel environment, but anticipated and capitalized on the market shifts—some of them almost imperceptible—accompanying the pandemic. Individually, the Top 25 are leaders, mentors, and role models; collectively, they are the engine driving the industry’s recovery and the foundation for its future success, according to the organization.

“The 2022 ‘Top 25’ celebrates the innovators in our industry and marks the 20th anniversary of Top 25 recognition,” said Robert A. Gilbert, president/CEO, HSMAI. “During a year when the travel and hospitality industry rebounded sharply and faced unprecedented challenges, these extraordinary professionals ‘rewrote the book’ and forged new paths to success in commercial strategy. Their exemplary performance will set new standards for others to follow.”

The 2022 HSMAI Top 25 Extraordinary Minds:

  • Hege V. Barnes – managing director, Innovation Norway
  • Susan Barr – VP One Yield, Marriott International
  • Paul Beirnes – executive director, Naples, Marco Island, and the Everglades CVB
  • Shane Brossard – chief marketing officer, Wisconsin Department of Tourism
  • Natasha Caputo – director, Westchester County Tourism & Film
  • Shelley Airhart Cooper – deputy director of marketing, Colorado Tourism Office
  • Dax Cross – CEO, Revenue Analytics
  • Michael Curran – VP, eCommerce strategy, Aimbridge Hospitality
  • Cristina DiStefano – director of enterprise marketing, Oneida Nation Enterprises
  • Laurie Garzon – director of sales and marketing, Wailea Beach Resort – Marriott, Maui
  • Richard Geiger – president, Visit Winston-Salem
  • Kristi Gole – EVP, Global Hotel Alliance
  • Michael Klein – VP, global revenue management, Hyatt Hotels Corporation
  • Melissa Kouvelas – senior director, worldwide sales, BWH Hotel Group
  • Sabrina Lillew – VP, loyalty programs and partnerships, North and Central America, Accor
  • Yola Marshall – VP America sales, IHG
  • Kevin McAteer – SVP, marketing and sales, Concord Hospitality
  • Monika Morrobel – senior corporate director, commercial strategy, Kessler Collection
  • Todd O’Leary – VP, marketing and communications, Sonoma County Tourism
  • Edelyn Parker-Frye – director, brand events, communications and partnerships, Red Roof
  • Linda Parker Sanpei – COO/chief creative officer, The Anything Group
  • Brent Shiratori – VP, global brand, Outrigger Resorts and Hotels
  • Stephanie Smith – CEO/digital matriarch, Cogwheel Marketing
  • Joe Spirito – VP, global digital & marketing operations, Preferred Travel Group
  • Gillian Ware – national sales director, San Diego Tourism Authority