37, Vice President of Sales
San Diego Tourism Authority, San Diego
What I do: “I motivate and provide leadership to a team of 13 national sales directors. Group business is extremely important to our hotels, and my day-to-day focus is to ensure collaboration between my sales team and our 134 hotel partners to provide the best customer experience for meeting planners.”
How he got here: Prior to this role, Finley led the sales team at Long Beach (California) CVB, overseeing citywide and in-house meetings. Before that, he spent 13 years with Marriott International in San Diego, Orange County and Los Angeles.
Next-level idea: “Two years ago, we changed the way we do business and took a leap of faith by having our hotel sales team’s goal based 100 percent on new group business (any group that had not been to San Diego in five years). They rose to the occasion. Year to date, our hotel meetings team has converted 507 new business opportunities, which is 44 percent over the number booked this same time last year.”
Watch The Next List video featuring Finley.