IAEE DC Member Feature: Syd Rivera

PMPI at the Westin Hotel

Name: Syd Rivera

Title: Regional Vice President, Eastern Region

Company: Map Your Show

What are your responsibilities with your company or event?

Manage customers and sales prospects in US Eastern Region. Territory extends from NYC to DC metro area.

Tell us about your company/organization/show:

Map Your Show (MYS) is a division within Gardner Business Media, which is a privately owned company based in Cincinnati, OH.  MYS functions as an independent business unit within Gardner that creates and services event management software for various aspects of the trade show industry.  MYS was formed in 2005 when they developed a web-based interactive floor plan module that caught the attention of the trade show industry due to its impressive design, ease-of-use, and expanded exhibitor booth content.  

 MYS expanded its product line around our floor plan module to incorporate seamless website integration of the following event management applications

  • Floor Plan Management & Integration with CAD
  • HTML Integrated Directory Search
  • Booth Sales Management
  • Data Collection and Directory Integration
  • Onsite Product Locator Kiosks
  • Custom Printed Hall Maps and Show Directories
  • Native Mobile Applications

 The MYS development philosophy is to focus on the core products mentioned above and build them in a manner that can be seamlessly integrated into any existing trade show website.  By investing in building our own dedicated development and customer service teams to better control our development processes, we ensure a high level of continuous support and responsiveness.

IAEE DC Involvement (Committees, etc):

DC Chapter Member

What drives your involvement with IAEE DC?

I support the education efforts that the DC chapter encourages. Networking at these events is also part of my job description.

Best IAEE DC Experience:

Running around with Mary Higham, Amy Fisher, Amy Durkin, and other chapter members visiting politicians last year on Exhibitions Day.

How long have you been in the DC area?

Since 1985

What made you choose to live here?

Job opportunities were great and I needed to get away from my first wife who was a nut case.

How did you first get involved in the industry?

I joined United Airlines in the mid-80’s as a passenger sales executive. My job was to call on travel agencies in the area and “persuad” each to sell as much UAL as possible. While doing this work, I met my current wife who was working as a sales executive with Fairmont Hotels (long story how we met). Through her, I became associated with her hotel friends and ended up in the Hilton Hotel Sales office in DC. At the time, the sales team was looking for an individual who was familiar with the airlines and could apply this experience with selling hotel packages to Hawaii. Being from the Islands, I was a perfect candidate. It was while at Hilton that I heard about IAEE and became a member.

Current/Past IAEE HQ involvement:

Map Your Show is the official Tradeshow Map provider for the IAEE ExpoExpo event. We’ve been partners with IAEE since 2008. 

What is the most interesting tradeshow other than your own that you have ever attended?

I attend numerous customer events to assist onsite. The most interesting tradeshow I attended was the International Association of Fire Chiefs. The little kid in me thoroughly enjoyed all of the big, shiny fire engines. I recall standing in a long line just to climb part way up the long extended ladder of one of the bigger vehicles. Totally cool! The other thing I remember was the live demonstrations where firefighters used different/new kinds of firefighting and rescue equipment on a car that was set on fire. Awesome!

Tradeshow Bucket List- if you could attend any tradeshow that you haven’t yet, what would it be?

Believe it or not, I have not yet been to the Consumer Electronics Show. This sits at the top of my Tradeshow Bucket List.

What book are you currently reading?

I recently finished American Sniper, and Ice Hunt by James Rollins. Both were read concurrently so it took me a while. I had read Sniper a long time ago but wanted to read it again before the movie came out, which was good but the book was better (everyone says that). I went with a group of guys (GNO) who were all retired military and from different branches of service. They made the movie even more fulfilling when we talked about it afterwards.

What is your favorite activity in your free time?

My lawn and garden is somewhat my passion. I enjoy a nicely manicured lawn (hate weeds!). Our flowers do alright. They can add great color to anyone’s yard. We started vegetable gardening a few years ago. I found that I’m “just okay” at growing the basics: tomatoes, zucchini, etc. I tried raising corn one year, but all I got was these little mutant ears that look like what you get when you order Chinese food with vegetables.

 If you could have any career other than your current one, what would it be?

Hmmmm…that’s an interesting question. I’ve had some great jobs in my lifetime. I’m fortunate and my jobs all seem better than the one I just left. When I think about what I would do when I retire, I still think of having a sales job. I would be pretty good selling running shoes (my per week mileage is @15 miles); or, I would have fun working in a hammock store near a beach.

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