ACCVB Annual Meeting

Special Awards Mark Meeting’s Celebration of Albany Ambassadors

ALBANY, N.Y. (February 26, 2009) –  The annual meeting of the Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau at the Albany Institute of History and Art was a celebration of not only Albany’s Quadricentennial and rich history, but also of the volunteer meeting planners who brought important meetings to the Capital Region.  Eighteen volunteers were honored during the event. 

“The diversity of the business that the Ambassadors brought to Albany translates to a real strength.  These meetings demonstrate a broad base of both professional and recreational interests that keep Albany a vital meeting destination” stated Michele Vennard, President and CEO of the Convention & Visitors Bureau.

This marks the 16th year that the ACCVB honored an exceptional group of volunteers, Albany Ambassadors, who provide the Capital Region with new and diverse opportunities to host meetings, reunions, conferences and sporting events.  To receive the designation of Albany Ambassador, one must be an event or committee volunteer and the meeting must realize in excess of 100 room nights.  

The 2008 Albany Ambassadors were responsible for bringing over 25,000 delegates and visitors, as well as over 9,000 room nights to the Albany area throughout 2008. 


The 2008 Albany Ambassadors are:

  • Master Adam Grogin of Pil-Sung Martial Arts, Event Director for the Second Annual Northeast Open
  • Trish McGinn, Senior Probation Officer of the New York State Probation Officer’s Association
  • Dr. Mo Hannah, Chair of the Battered Women, Abused Children, and Child Custody Conference
  • Christine Gagnon, MRSA Prevention Coordinator of Stratton VA Medical Center
  • Clifford Brant of Capital Brass Bugle Corps.
  • Bill Goichberg, President of the New York Chess Association
  • Shihan Tony Butler of AAU Karate
  • Ray Melleady of the New York Public Transit Association, Inc.
  • Barbara Deso and Jim Putman, Co-Coordinators of the Great Council of NYS Improved Order of Red Men & Degree of Pocahontas
  • Annette Tedesco, Director of the Northeastern Scrabble Tournament; Emma Dickson, coordinator of the Smith-McCarty Family Reunion
  • William Kearsing, 2008 Convention Chairman for the American Legion, Department of New York
  • Deb Sippel and Karen Krauss, Co-Coordinators, The United States Bowling Congress-Albany Association
  • Priscilla McCaughin of the United Federation of Doll Clubs
  • Dr. Eva C. Joseph, Superintendent, City School District of Albany, championed for the National Urban Alliance to come to Albany
  • Dr. Joseph Watson, President-elect of the National Council on Student Development
  • George Pieper, Treasurer of the NY Schools Data Analysis Technical Assistance Group

The Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Inc. was established in 1976 to promote the civic and commercial progress of the community through increased development of conventions and tourism. ACCVB currently represents more than 300 member businesses and assists each year in hundreds of regional meetings. ACCVB also operates the Albany Heritage Area Visitors Center, Henry Hudson Planetarium and the Albany International Airport Information Center. For more information, call 518-434-1217 or 800-258-3582 and/or visit


Special Thanks:

Sanctioned by: