Chapter Leadership

Chapter Leadership

Boston Chapter Board of Directors

Renee SaboPresident 
RENEE SABO
Renée is the owner and lead wedding consultant of Urban Soirée, which provides full-service wedding planning to couples in the New England area and beyond. Her heart beats for intimate, ethereal, and timeless celebrations. Her career within the Boston event industry includes working with two luxury wedding planning firms in the New England area, in addition to her roles as a Catering Sales Manager at the Hyatt Regency Boston and Social Catering Manager at the New England Aquarium. In addition to Urban Soirée, Renée has a passion for educating aspiring wedding professionals and cultivating community within our industry. When she’s not working with brides and grooms-to-be, you can find Renée on her podcast, The Confetti Hour hosting candid conversations with the most inspiring guests, or at Everyday Creative offering educational support to fellow small business creatives. 

      Rid68xbrT.pngPresident Elect
TOM KURA

Tom is the co-founder and owner of Your Love In Lights, a marquee letter rental company based in Needham, MA that supports social and corporate events across New England. He started the business with his wife Helen in 2015, opening a third act in a career that began in manufacturing and international business management and later in management consulting. He designs and builds all of the company’s products and loves the freedom and sense of ownership that comes with running his own business. Tom joined ILEA in 2016 and credits the relationships built there as keys to the early success of his business and his own learning and growth as a participant in the live events industry. This is Tom's third year on the board. 

  Rid68xbrT.pngImmediate Past President
BLAIR ALLEN MITCHAM

Blair grew up with a passion for creativity and organization and a niche in crafting. In late 2013 after successfully self-planning her own unique wedding Blair honed in her passions and talents upon the realization that she had discovered a new career opportunity in professional wedding and event planning.

Blair worked in several facets of the events industry prior to and while enrolled in event planning certification courses in September of 2014 and simultaneously joined the Boston chapter of the International Live Events Association (ILEA). ILEA Boston provided that event professional's frame of mind and polishing she seeked to take that extra step in formally establishing BAM Events in 2015. Over several years as an active ILEA Boston member Blair served on several chapter positions and international committees and ultimately was nominated President of the chapter Board of Directors in which she served from 2019-2020. 2020 has brought upon a unique challenge in the events industry that required a creative and organized leadership responsetraits of her original foundation for BAM Events. Her ultra-personal client and vendor relationships have proven successful and appreciated and has resulted in BAM Events being retained by her industry peer professionals for guidance.

Kim Head shotVice President of Communications
KIM LIVESEY

Inspired by sophisticated design and modern style, Kim Livesey is the Co-Owner and Event Director of Calla Catering and Events LLC which she co-founded in 2017.  Kim's passion for creating unforgettable celebrations has led her all over the country and fostered her career as Catering and Convention Services Manager at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa, Catering Coordinator and Consultant for Deja Blu Catering to owning Calla's sister company for the past 10 years - Kiss on the Chic Weddings & Events as a destination wedding planner, coordinating over 600 events from New England to Hawaii. That's a lot of Champagne! 

Graduating from Florida State University with a hospitality management and business degree, Kim knew from an early age her passion was planning weddings and events. Kim prides herself on staying cool, calm and collected during the planning process while juggling 2 cute kids under 5 years old! Kim loves to travel the world with friends, enjoys a good glass of pinot noir and helps keep her stress level down with a nice relaxing spa day! This is Kim's second year on the ILEA Board as the VP of Communications - excited to network with other talented industry professionals - even if it is virtually!
Vice President of Membership
DAVID "DJ" BUONO

The nickname may have preceded the business, but it is undeniably apt. David “DJ” Buono, named somewhat jokingly as a nod to his father's 1980's Boston radio DJ run, has nearly two decades of experience and study in the professional events industry. Entering the industry at 9 years old with the guidance of his father and Boston radio legend "Lady D", David (known to friends and family as "DJ") has literally spent nearly 75% of his life in the events world. In 2020, in direct response to the industry pandemic shakeup, DJ took the opportunity to launch a South Florida division of Spinner Music Productions (SMP) to extend the company's wedding and event operations to a year-round model to firm up the bottom line but remains rooted in Boston, dedicated to the challenge of realizing ILEA Boston member ROI during an exceptionally difficult time. This is DJ's first year on the ILEA Board as the VP of Membership!

Ken_Barrett-Sweet_621255073.jpgVice President of Programs
KEN BARRETT-SWEET  
In the farmhouse kitchens of his family, Barrett-Sweet began cooking at a young age. Early recollections tell that Ken’s toy of choice were his very own collection of pots and pans. Armed with a degree from Samford University and a background in business analysis, Chef Barrett dove into the culinary field. His passion for quality and thirst for artistry sent him to the kitchens and culinary studios of Paris, continuing onto an educational quest that will end with a Master’s Degree in Hospitality and Culinary Arts. For the past 20 years he has been one of the influencers in the Catering and Events industry as it pertains to hospitality, guest experiences and all things food and beverage. Now, his passion is sharing the spark of creativity and the ability to build events outside of norm through industry associations. Currently, Ken is the Vice President of Catering at The Catered Affair,  Adjunct Culinary Producer for UBM Catersource, a member of the Board of Directors for the International Caterers Association and the Vice President of Education and Programs for ILEA Boston.




ILEA_BOSTON_extra_small.jpgDirector of Communications
SOPHIA BOWDEN

Sophia Bowden was born and raised here in Boston, Massachusetts. Sophia has always had an interest in decor and seeing events come to life. Sophia decided to further her credentials and become certified as an event planner. In 2015 she completed a course with Massasoit College and became a certified event planner, it is there she was introduced to ILEA.  It was through ILEA that she realized there was so much more to the event planning world and she knew she had to become part of such an amazing organization. 
 
She decided she wanted to combine her creativity and organizational skills with her love for special events, and so she started her own event planning business, "Blessed Creations" and hasn't looked back since.
She loves developing personal relationships with each client and feels it is truly the key to making each event a unique and special affair to remember. Sophia is a detail-oriented person. This has helped her focus on even the smallest aspects (that sometimes turn out to be the most important) when she's helping to create the day of your dreams. This is Sophia's first year officially on the Board as Director of Communications as she has been in involved with ILEA assisting as a programs committee member!
Director of Social Media
OLIVIA HAMILTON
Beginning her career as the social media and marketing intern for Somerville-based event production company, VDA Inc., Olivia’s path into the events world required a leap of faith from her roots in writing. Graduating from Saint Michael’s College (Colchester, VT) in 2015 with a degree in Media, Journalism, and Digital Arts, Olivia’s communication skills have enabled her to criss-cross the events industry with roles in sales, account relationship management, and event operations. Her passion lies in the conference and trade show world, where she served for two years as the account manager for Dell Technologies, helping bring booths to life for shows including Dell Tech World, VMworld, and AWS re:Invent. Now at Cambridge-based technology leader, Akamai Technologies, Olivia manages the executive briefing center space, dedicated to creating impactful customer meetings and engagements. 

A proponent of the Oxford comma, Olivia is an iced coffee junkie and a donut connoisseur. She enjoys blowing off steam at her local spin studio or going for a walk with her corgi, Dexter. A lover of traveling, Olivia aspires to move to Hawaii one day! 

This is Olivia’s second year on the ILEA Boston Chapter Board as Director of Social Media.
Matthew_G_Regan.jpgDirector of Membership
MATTHEW REGAN

Matthew Regan is the Events and Conferences Manager for the Questrom School of Business at Boston University.  Matthew graduated from Roger Williams University in 2016 with a Bachelors of Science in Security Assurance Studies. During his time at RWU, Matthew discovered his passion for event planning with his work  with the Office of Admissions and the Office of Events and Conferences.  It was in these offices that Matthew forged a career in the events industry and took to heart what it means to bring people together.

Matthew has spent most of his career working in higher education events. He strives to implement policies and procedures that ensure event attendees receive an engaging and consistent experience at events. He works tirelessly to use events to create a strong brand identity. Matthew takes great pride in seeing the joy and excitement that his events bring attendees.

Matthew is currently pursuing his Master of Management in Hospitality degree at Boston University’s School of Hospitality Administration. He is excited to be serving for the first time on the Board of Directors for ILEA Boston as the Director of Membership. Matthew looks forward to engaging current members as we emerge from these unprecedented times, a stronger industry, and an even stronger Boston chapter!


ILEA_BOSTON_extra_small.jpgDirector of Programs
JODI GOLD
Jodi works as a Creative Event Designer for Siagel Productions, a Boston based entertainment and event specialist company. She enthusiastically plans a wide range of social events including Bar & Bat Mitzvahs, Weddings and a variety of special events.  Jodi’s attention to detail and complete involvement is evident in her work as she has successfully executed events throughout the New England area.  After 6 years in the industry, she is happy to tell anyone that she is absolutely doing her dream job! The favorite parts of her work are seeing an event come to life and being able to understand her client’s needs- allowing her to deliver above their expectations. When she is not planning events for Siagel or ILEA, Jodi can be found in her Fenway apartment with an iced coffee, watching reality TV. Proud and grateful for having won both the Rising Star Award and the Merit Scholarship from ILEA Boston in 2019, Jodi is excited for what the year ahead has in store!

Barcelona_3.jpgDirector of Education
JOSH POIRIER

Joshua Poirier is currently a Meetings and Events Planner at Unbridled Event Productions, Boston. Josh has planned a wide range of nonprofit and corporate events since graduating from Westfield State University in 2017 with a degree in Public in Corporate Communications. His passion for events began from a small internship at Westfield State and has now blossomed into a career, planning events across the country. Josh takes pride in his work and will take on any role to make sure the client is pleased, and his company’s brand is represented flawlessly throughout.

When he is not engrossed in work and planning events, you can catch him reading a book, in the kitchen or even hiking up in the White Mountains.

This is Josh’s first year on the ILEA Boston Chapter Board as Director of Education and even during a pandemic, he is excited to bring all that he has to offer to make this an amazing year.


Char_Picture_2.jpgDirector of Special Projects
CHARLOTTE CALLAHAN
Charlotte is currently the Social Event Sales Manager at the Museum of Science, Boston. With a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Providence College, Class of 2011, Charlotte never expected to become an events professional. She “fell” into the events and hospitality business and it quickly became her passion. With an intuitive understanding of the event planning process and of bringing client visions to life, Charlotte began her career in Vermont (her home state) managing weddings at the spectacular Equinox Resort & Spa in Manchester, VT. Following her time in Vermont, Charlotte spent an exceptional season overseeing events at The Colony Hotel in Kennebunkport, ME. She finally landed in the North End, Boston where Charlotte enjoys running along the Harborwalk and exploring the city. Charlotte is currently serving her second year on the ILEA Board and is honored to a leader of the ILEA Boston family.

ILEA_BOSTON_extra_small.jpg

Director of Administration and
Spirit of Excellence
LINDA MACDONALD
Linda MacDonald is the Event Manager at Calla Catering and Events LLC.  While she graduated from Plymouth State University in 2013 with a Bachelors Degree in Art History, it was her experience working for the Walt Disney Company for three years that introduced the hospitality industry to her, and she immediately knew this was her true path.  Linda moved back to New England and was a member of the team at the historic Wentworth By The Sea Country Club in Rye, New Hampshire, and is now bringing events to life in the Greater Boston area at Calla Catering and Events LLC.  She loves to try any dessert you put in front of her (especially donuts!), listen to podcasts, and to show off pictures of her daughter.  Linda is serving her second year on the ILEA Boston Chapter Board as Director of Administration and Spirit of Excellence.