Meet our Advisory Committee
Managing Director, Global Destinations Sustainability Index and GuBi Consulting
For the last 15 years, Guy has been delivering award-winning consulting services focused on helping cities, governments, associations and the hospitality industry step up, scale up and speed up their sustainability programmes and operational practices.
He is a recognised expert on creating sustainable destinations, communities and events through multi stakeholder collaboration. Currently Guy is the Managing Director of the Global Destinations Sustainability Index (GDS-Index); a multi-stakeholder partnership to accelerate the development and performance of sustainable tourism destinations. Today the GDS-Index is benchmarking and consulting to over 60 cities.
From 2006 to 2018, Guy was the Sustainability Director of MCI, the world’s largest association management, communications and events agency. He launched and developed a CSR program across the corporation’s 60 offices, developing a business strategy that positioned MCI to be an award winning sustainability champion, and the organiser of over 1000 events about sustainable development, Smart Cities and energy.
Guy is a passionate and outstanding communicator, who has delivered over 350 keynote presentations and facilitated workshops engaging over 35,000 participants in more than 40 countries. Guy’s pioneering work has been recognised with 21 sustainability awards including the Events Industry Council Pacesetter Award. He has co-written 3 Sustainable Event Guidebooks for the United Nations, and helped developed over 10 sustainability standards. He was previously the President of the Green Meetings Industry Council.
Owner, Sirk Serendipity
Martin Sirk runs the strategic consultancy Sirk Serendipity, set up in September 2018, serving a range of clients in the international association and/or global meetings sectors.
On 1 June 2019 he took over the role of International Advisor to the Global Association Hubs Partnership, working with Brussels, Dubai, Singapore and Washington DC to assist international associations in achieving their strategic development goals, and driving forward GAHP’s strategic profiling and marketing agenda. This is now Martin’s largest and most important ongoing project.
Martin also advises the International Association for the Study of Pain on building strategic partnerships with other healthcare associations, is working with ePoster tech start-up Kubify, and has recently designed and led projects with organisations such as IMEX, SITE and UFI. He has recently been tasked with leading the re-design of the IMEX Policy Forum which takes place May 2020 in Frankfurt, where sustainability and the broader societal impact of meetings will be high on the agenda.
From 2002 to July 2018, Martin was CEO of ICCA, the International Congress and Convention Association, during which time the association doubled in size to almost 1,200 members in 100 countries. Prior to that, he held senior sales and marketing positions with Hilton International, Brighton and Hove City Council, and the British Tourist Authority (as VisitBritain was then known).
Areas of expertise and interest include meeting design, association strategy and development, social and economic impact of meetings, destination marketing, networking theory, and the future evolution of the meetings industry.
Martin divides his time between Amsterdam and the USA, when not travelling on projects.
Founder and CEO of Coda Societies
Garance Choko is the CEO of Coda Societies, a firm that shapes social and economic infrastructures to promote equity worldwide. She started her career as a concert pianist at a very young age. Later, when she moved to the United States to continue her performance studies, she pursued her passion for public administration, innovation and social impact. She earned her Masters of Public Administration from Cornell University.
Garance has launched social innovation firms, designed and implemented physical spaces, national and local health care systems, nationwide public administration processes, think tanks, regional economic agendas and labor policies for institutions, corporations and governments in North America, Europe, Africa and the Caribbean. She is devoted to social equity and a proud board member at Sing For Hope.
Director of InterPraxis
David is Director of InterPraxis an internationally recognized consultancy specializing in ethics, corporate responsibility, stakeholder engagement human rights impact assessments, anti-corruption, and sustainability auditing and assurance. He is a former head of the Independent Accountability Mechanism at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the former Director of Standards and Collaborative Governance at the international think-tank AccountAbility, where he oversaw the development of the AA1000 Sustainability Assurance Standard. He has been an active contributor to the GRI, a technical committee member for the AA1000 Sustainability Standards and was Chair of the Assurance Technical Committee for Social Value International (formerly SROI). David was also an expert member of the International Working Group that published the ISO 26000 Guidance Standard on Social Responsibility and ISO 37001 Anti-Bribery Management System Standard.
A former Executive Director of the Canadian Centre for Ethics & Corporate Policy, David has led seminars with the United Nations University and has lectured at the University of Toronto, York University as well as at Oxford’s Saïd Business School and the University of Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership. He is frequently invited to deliver seminars, and has lead workshopsin Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, South America and Australia.
He has carried out important projects with private sector clients in the banking, insurance, investment, consumer products, apparel, food and beverage, and mining sectors. He has also worked with a number of governments and inter-governmental organizations (i.e. World Bank, IFC, UN, etc.) as well as with numerous nonprofit organizations from around the globe.
David holds a Master’s degree in International Social and Economic Development from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs.
Chief Editor Boardroom, the Best Resource for Associations
A specialized journalist in the association management field, Remi has been working for more than ten years in the meetings industry. In 2017, together with Cecile Koch, he launched Boardroom, which has become the global reference point for the world of associations. Targeting associations based the world over, Boardroom doesn’t deal with the meetings industry per se but, instead, covers a wide spectrum of issues of interest to the associations. It also gives voice to destinations, venues, industry organisations, etc. who can help and partner with these associations.
Linda Garzon Rocha
Executive Director - World Meetings Forum
Experience in creating and implementing destination and event marketing strategies aimed to position and strengthen brands in the international market of meetings and events industry. Customer oriented to create awareness and maintenance through the generation of unique experiences in destinations and events with the aim of achieving a long-term relationship and business. Tourist and Hotel Management degree from Universidad Externado de Colombia, Master's Degree in Tourism Destination Management at the Universidad Anahuac México Norte.
Member of the team that created and presented the PR strategy winner of the ICCA Best PR Award 2015 among 418 cities, People: The Power of Hope, One Young World Bogota 2017 and also the destination strategy “Changing the present, shaping the future: Fostering Transformation through the events industry”, recognized as one of the four best marketing strategies of the events industry Best Marketing Award BMA 2016
Part of the leading team behind the Bogotá bid strategy to host the: One Young World October 4 to 7 2017, World Summit of Nobel Peace Prizes February 2 to 5 2017, World Cluster Congress November 7 to 9 2017, World Congress of Neurosurgery 2021, among others. Linda currently runs the World Meetings Forum a boutique event that bring suppliers and buyers from the Americas around the 4 main pillars:
Culture: Academic sessions with a high value proposition
Connection: networking from min 0
Closing: Business opportunities
Purpose: Unleashing the true power of the meetings industry to create long lasting impact.