Paola Bowman, CMP, CMM, 38, works in Arlington, Texas, as the destination services manager for the Arlington CVB. As a 2019 40 Under 40 honoree, Bowman discusses her passion for the events industry.
What I do: I’m a destination marketing guru and event designer helping planners embrace strategic event management to deliver memorable experiences in our region. I’m a net weaver connecting clients and attendees to our local community. I bridge people and ideas to make great things happen.
How I got here: It has been an incredible journey growing up in the hospitality industry with a long background in hotel operations and a variety of roles in the DMO world. I have been very fortunate to have met—and still have—amazing mentors that have taught me a lot. Obtaining industry certifications and networking have been key in my success.
Greatest career accomplishment: I’m proud to have obtained both my CMP and CMM designations and being part of the Event Services Professionals Association board of directors.
Impressive stats: In my current role, I help increase productivity of the services team by 20 percent. In my previous role with Fort Worth, I refocused the services offered for small meetings, resulting in an increase of 30 percent for booking retention. Additionally, I launched an event planner blog and local convention services manager newsletter for the organization.
Specific improvement I’ve made: Through training and mentoring, I coached my team to fully utilize the organization’s CRM to improve a variety of processes, including streamlining how we track and offer services to planers hosting meetings in the city. I also launched the inaugural destination and tourism class/tour for the local school district’s high school hospitality class to be offered by the CVB.
What I am working on now: I am stoked to join the Arlington CVB to be the main contact for the destination services efforts for the organization for meetings, conventions and the leisure markets. It is exciting to become part of a growing city with premier attractions, like AT&T Stadium, Globe Life Park, and the upcoming opening of Live! by Lowes. I look forward to focusing my talents on the continual evolution of services offered by the destination.
What I do outside of work: I enjoy my involvement with the Event Service Professionals Association and mentoring others; I sit on the ESPA board’s executive committee as treasurer. I love scrapbooking, movies and, most of all, spending time with my boys and pets. I could not do what I do, without the support of my husband and the energy of my sons.