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2017 Speakers


2017 Speaker Profiles  
Listed In Alphabetical Order Of First Names  
Alicia Yao   Alicia Yao
China Social Organization, International Department

Alicia has 30 years’ working experience in international meeting, corporate events, luxury travel and tourism industry with CITS, from an incentive tour guide, national and international escort promoted to be a Travel Account manager and a PCO as well as a sales director and professional for incentive travel and business event industry. She was Deputy General Manager, CITE MICE when she started her own consulting company in 2013. Alicia is also a Board Director of SITE Global (2015 – 2017) and Deputy General Secretary of China M.I.C.E Committee, China Association of Travel Services. In addition, she is a member of MPI and ICCA and received professional PCO training from IAPCO in 2001.

Topic: Association Day 2 | Fostering Greater Regional Association Collaboration

Antonio Pasalic   Antonio Pasalic
Director of International Operations
Global Mobile Game Confederation (GMGC)

Antonio is currently bridging a gap between East and West in mobile gaming ecosystem, and running international side of things at Global Mobile Game Confederation, based in Beijing, China. Working also on setting up conferences in China and Southeast Asia, together with a partnership platform which is opening the markets for further exploration and collaboration. Previously involved as an expert with European Union funded projects in domains from Public Transport to Culture and also Education, as a part of Pro Rail Alliance and Institute for Development and International Relations in Croatia and Central European Initiative in Italy.

Topic: Association Day Forum 2 | Fostering Greater Regional Association Collaboration

Ashwin Gunasekeran   Ashwin Gunasekeran
Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau

Ashwin is the Chief Executive Officer of Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB), the first State Convention Bureau in Northern Malaysia set up in 2016 to develop and grow its Business Events industry. Prior to joining PCEB, he was the Assistant Vice President of Group Sales & Marketing of Destination Resorts And Hotels Sdn Bhd, and was the Director of Sales at Lone Pine Hotel from 2010 to 2012. A born and bred Penangite, Ashwin worked for the Penang Tourism Action Council upon obtaining his Master’s degree in International Tourism from IMI University, Switzerland. An industry veteran of over 13 years, he brings to PCEB his accrued experience in tourism and hospitality management, revenue analysis, yield management, business development and business tourism.

Topic: ASEAN MICE Forum 1 | NTOs and CVBs - Collaborator or Competitor?

Edathil Vijayan   Edathil Vijayan
Society of Biotechnologists India

Prof Edathil Vijayan, President, Society of Biotechnologists India Prof Vijayan is an eminent scientist, academician and teacher in the field of neuroendocrinology. He is currently UGC-Visiting Professor at the Department of Biotechnology, Cochin University of Science and Technology, and active in numerous professional societies. He serves as President to the Society for Biotechnologists India (SBTI), which is an association of biotechnologists, academicians, doctors, industrialists, professionals and students dedicated to the advancement of biotechnology. SBTI serves as liaison between various specialised fields of theoretical and applied biotechnology and functions as a nonprofit organisation, promoting the exchange of scientific information through workshops, conferences and publications. SBTI currently has a membership of 2,000.

Topic: Association Day 2 | Fostering Greater Regional Association Collaboration

Jason Yeh   Jason Yeh
ICCA Asia Pacific and Taiwan Convention and Exhibition Association (Association President and Destination Marketing)

Jason Yeh is a leading meeting solution provider in Taiwan. He is the current CEO of GIS Group, President of Taiwan Convention & Exhibition Association, Board Member and Asia-Pacific Chapter Chair of International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). To constantly contribute to the MICE industry, Yeh is a Lecturer at National Taiwan Normal University (Graduate Institute of Translation and Interpretation) and commissioner of Bureau of Foreign Trade and Economic Development Bureau, Kaohsiung City.

GIS Group, founded in 1991 by Yeh, provides a list of meeting services including conference management, destination management (corporate event, incentive program, teambuilding and cultural activities), audiovisual and congress technology, language services and venue management. The company is a member of International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (SITE), The International Association of Professional Congress Organisers (IAPCO) and BOSCH Congress Rental Network (CRN).

It has always been Yeh’s mission to help enhancing the meeting industry and to bring more international meetings into Taiwan. With Yeh’s great work and active presence in the field, he has been awarded The 25 Most Influential People in the Meetings Industry for 2017.

Topic: Keynote Address | The Next Wave of Growth For The Asia Pacific MICE Industry

Jia Xiao Fang   Jia Xiao Fang
China International Health & Medical Tourism Association (CIHMTA)

Dr. Jia Xiao Fang is President of China International Health & Medical Tourism Association (CIHMTA), the Greater China’s largest and leading health tourism and medical tourism industry platform. She is Vice-President of Global Healthcare Travel Council (GHTC), Chairman of World Health & Medical Tourism Conference and Expo, Chairman of Silk Road International Health Tourism Summit.

Dr. Jia has devoted herself to the globally strategic cooperation with health and medical tourism institutes, corporations, agencies and medical insurance providers; international B2G / B2B business development in health and medical tourism industry. By collaborating with the China government authorities, she also works hard to set up medical tourism accreditation and certification system in China. She has took part in several government health and medical tourism programs by providing consultancy in branding and marketing strategy, cross-border collaboration, international trade, business development, investment, projects /programs /portfolios management solutions. Dr. Jia serves as consultant and advisor to several China international healthcare clusters, health & medical tourism destinations. With her multi-faceted experiences and expertise, she was very honored to have been invited as Advisory Board Member, Moderator, Keynote Speaker, Industry Panel Expert of many international healthcare and senior care industry conferences/ summits/ forums.

Topic: Association Day 1 | Navigating the Changing Landscape for Association Meetings and Events

Koichi Gono   Koichi Gono
Chief Executive,
Fukuoka Convention & Visitors Bureau

Entered into Fukuoka Prefectural Government in 1981.
Mainly worked for International Affairs.
In 1989, moved to London, UK Office of Japan Local Government Center. Encountered the collapse of the Berlin Wall and rapid change of Europe.
Returned to Fukuoka and then worked for FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) and Global Business Development for Local Firms.
In 2012 moved to Fukuoka City Government and worked for MICE Business, Tourism Promotion, Local Firms Innovation, Star-up Business Development etc.
Personally love travelling. Visited more than 50 countries. Different culture, food and life style stimulates me into a new challenge.

Topic: Keynote Address | The Next Wave of Growth for the Asia-Pacific MICE Industry

Li Xinxue   Li Xinxue
Program Director & Chief Assistant,
World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies (WFCMS)

Major in Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine, I graduated from Beijing University of Chinese Medicine with Master Degree in 2013. And then start my career in WFCMS, the largest NGO of Traditional Chinese Medicine of the world, focusing on conference organization, FAM trip design, scientific research on complementary and alternative medicine, home and oversea membership liaison, and news report.

For conference organization and FAM trip design, my team and I will take in charge of all the details, including online registration platform design and presentation, representatives’ accommodation and flight booking, conference hotel, academic arrangement, accounting, and all the cooperation with tourist and airline agencies. The most useful and significant tool my team and I found for these years in working is the INTERNET.

Topic: Association Day Forum 3 | Leveraging Digital Technologies in Your Audience Engagement

Noor Ahmad Hamid   Noor Ahmad Hamid
Regional Director, Asia Pacific,

Noor has been the Regional Director, Asia Pacific of ICCA since 2009. Prior to joining ICCA, he began his career in tourism marketing with the national tourist authority - Tourism Malaysia where he handled and oversaw international and domestic tourism promotion, media hospitality, meeting & incentive projects and event organisation. After 16 years with Tourism Malaysia, he joined the business sector in event management, sponsorship and innovative tourism projects, a background that uniquely helps him understand ICCA members' vast range of business cultures and working environments. In his current role, Noor is a vital ambassador for ICCA, representing the organisation at numerous national and regional meeting forums. In addition, he provides training workshops and leads educational seminars in bidding and marketing. He also sits on the Founding Advisory Board and serves as Ambassador for the ASAE Great Ideas in Association Management Conference Asia Pacific.

Topic: Association Day 2 | Fostering Greater Regional Association Collaboration

Pairach Piboonrungroj   Pairach Piboonrungroj
MICE Excellence Centre, Chiang Mai University

Dr. Pairach Piboonrungroj is the founding director of MICE Excellence Centre at Chiang Mai University. The focus of the MICE Excellence Centre are to develop human resource, database and research in the MICE industry of Chiang Mai province and the Lanna region (Northern) region of Thailand. His education background started with a First Class Honour degree in Bachelor of Economics at Chiang Mai University. Then he won the Royal Thai Government Scholarship to study Master and PhD degree at Cardiff University, United Kingdom. Dr. Pairach is one of the first who passed certified meeting professional (CMP) by the Convention Industrial Council (CIC) and a Certified Exhibition Professionals (CEM) by the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE). Apart of the MICE industry, Dr. Pairach has been researching in logistics and supply chain management industry. Dr. Pairach was recently appointed as an acting associate dean of the College of Maritime Studies and Management of Chiang Mai University since May 2017.

Topic: ASEAN MICE Forum 1 | NTOs and CVBs – Collaborator or Competitor? (Part 1)

Richard Holmes   Richard Holmes
International Director of Meetings,
International League Against Epilepsy

Richard has been involved in congress management for many years. He served as a member of the IBE and ILAE executive committees from 1993 - 1999. He was the Treasurer of IBE from 1993 - 1999, and President of IBE from 1997 - 1999. He has served on many international conference committees and has a full understanding of these meetings. Through his position on the association's executive committees he was instrumental in the creation of European conferences on Epilepsy and brought the 1st Epilepsy and Society conference to Dublin in 1990. He also brought the largest medical conference to Ireland in 1997, when the 22nd International Congres was held in Dublin - this congress attracted over 5,000 delegates. When the ILAE and IBE set up its own congress secretariat office, Richard was appointed International Director of Meetings. He and his team now manage biennial meetings in Latin America, Africa, Middle East, Asia/ Oceania and three meetings in Europe (Research, Medical and Social Issues). In addition, he also organises the International Epilepsy Congress. Richard is a founding member and Past President (2000 - 2005) of the Associations Conference Forum (AC Forum), an amalgamation of 25 of the largest medical conferences in the world.

Topic: Association Day 1 | Navigating the Changing Landscape for Association Meetings and Events

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