Groups Today MarchApril 2024

Page 30


Photo © Hawai'i Tourism Aut horit y

Lynn Whitehead


Vice President Global MCI Sales & Marketing | Meet Hawai'i Edited by Sarah Suydam

As Vice President Global MCI Sales & Marketing of Meet Hawai‘i, Lynn Whitehead oversees and directs Hawai’i Visitors & Convention Bureau’s (HVCB) global sales and marketing ef forts for both city wide and single-property meeting, conventions and incentives (MCI) business. With over 30 years of meetings and conventions experience, the majority of Whitehead’s career has been spent with DMOs; previously with San Diego Tourism Authority (National Sales Director, Eastern Region) and the San Diego Convention Center Corporation (Director of National Accounts). Groups Today caught up with Whitehead to learn the latest.


and federal emergency responders continue with efforts to

T he Haw a i'i Tou r i sm Aut hor it y (H TA) a nd Haw a i'i

conduct clean-up efforts of debris and hazardous materials

Tourism United States have par t nered w it h a statew ide

result ing from t he w ildf ires. Please do not stop on t he

a l l ia nc e of pr i v ate i ndu st r y pa r t ner s to lau nc h t he

bypass or streets to take pictures or to get a closer view.

Malama Hawai‘i program. Malama means “to care for”—

Respectful travel to any of the Hawaiian Islands, including

our people, place and ourselves. This is a CSR prog ram

Maui, is welcomed and encouraged, now more than ever.

t hat encou rages m i nd f u l a nd regenerat ive tou r ism by

With the exception of Lahaina—Maui is open and there is

of fering an oppor tunit y to engage in aut hent ic cultural

plenty to see and experience. However, we urge visitors to

experiences that create opportunities to connect w ith the

be especially respectful and mindful in the following ways:

communit y and culture in profound, meaningful ways. Many of the Malama Hawai‘i activ ities encourage visitors to take part in volunteer opportunities that directly impact the env ironment. The goal for this program is to create a deeper understanding of the importance of the land to our

» Visit w ith aloha, compassion and empathy. » Support local businesses. Visit for suggestions. » Malama (care for) Maui and give back by signing up for an enriching volunteer experience.

culture and provide a way to preser ve both in the future.

» Learn about t he historical and cultural signif icance

E xa mples include sunr ise beach clea n-ups, restor ing a

of Lahaina but stay away from the area as a means of

traditional native Hawaiian fishpond, and learning about

respect for the people and places that have been lost.

food sovereignt y on a sustainable farm, among others.

Please don’t take photos of the area, even from afar.



The August 2023 wildfires resulted in the devastating

H VCB w ill be launching an updated Meet ing Planner

loss of loved ones, homes, cultural and historical sites and

Gu ide w it h en ha nced d ig ita l-pla n n i ng resou rces such

businesses in Lahaina, located in West Maui. We are grateful

as maps, d i rector ies a nd FAQs, as wel l as i n for mat ion

for the outpouring of support for Maui from around the world,

on faci l it ies, accom modat ions, d i n i ng , tea m-bu i ld i ng

from sharing memories and offering their assistance, to

oppor t u n it ies, volu ntou r ism ex per iences a nd pre- a nd

asking questions about travel to Maui and the rest of the state.

post-conference touring act iv it ies f rom sw imming w it h

Lahaina will remain fully closed to the public until further

sea turtles and manta rays to exploring an active volcano

notice out of respect to the town’s residents. County, state

or hik ing through lush rainforest.

Help Maui communities and f amilies recover through contributions to the Hawai'i Community Foundation’s Maui Strong Fund: hawaiicommunit y trong.


GROUPS TODAY March / April 2 02 4

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