Leadership / 12.31.19
10 Women in Ticketing: A Year in Review
In 2019, Access celebrated the women of the ticketing industry by launching an interview series focused on their passion for their careers, advice for aspiring women in the field and what INTIX means to them. Before we begin a new decade, take a look back at the inspiring stories from women across the industry and across continents.
A little over two years ago, something quite out of the ordinary happened in the ticketing technology industry. A major firm that had been co-founded and headed by a woman for many years gave way to a new president and CEO — who was also a woman. The company is Paciolan. Based in California, it was co-founded by Jane Kleinberger in 1980, and she would go on to serve as its president — the first-ever female president of a major ticketing technology company.
The ticketing industry has been very good for Linda Forlini, and she, in turn, has been very good for it. She currently serves as Vice President of Ticket Philadelphia, a position she has held since 2015 with responsibility for the overall management of the organization and the various services it provides to the Kimmel Center Inc., The Philadelphia Orchestra, and other resident companies and clients. Ticket Philadelphia offers comprehensive ticket office, phone and internet purchase options as well as full customer relations management. It’s “one of the largest ticketing consortiums” in the country, she noted in a recent interview.
As Caesars Entertainment’s Vice President of Global Ticketing, Amy Graca oversees 90 live entertainment venues around the world. In this capacity, she manages the ticketing strategy enterprise-wide for the company’s 40-plus integrated resorts in the United States and internationally. “I lead all ticketing strategies and operations in Las Vegas,” she says. “We are operating with a team of more than 300 people to lead this effort. We are launching new attractions and shows on a regular basis, which allows us to utilize pricing tools, inventory tools and create efficiencies throughout the enterprise.”
“I love people! Building relationships and creating positive experiences is my favorite part of this job. Sometimes, the most interesting people are not always on stage. Learning about people and being able to create a show or an event that will somehow enhance the power of someone’s fond memory is honestly epic.” So says industry professional Ebony Hattix. And the epic job she is referring to? Hattix is the Box Office Manager for FedExForum in Memphis, the home arena of the Memphis Grizzlies NBA basketball team.
Crystal Brewe is the Senior Vice President of Strategic Marketing & Communications for the Kimmel Center Cultural Campus in Philadelphia. The campus is situated along the city’s famed Avenue of the Arts and sees more than 1 million visitors a year through the doors of its three-building complex that includes the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, the Academy of Music and the Merriam Theater.
Lynne King Smith
Lynne King Smith has always been a force to be reckoned with. Over the course of her life and career, she has been a musician, a piano teacher, a choir director, she’s worked for a software company, and she owns a mixed-use building. So, it’s no surprise that when the entrepreneurial bug bit her and her husband back in 2003, they named their company TicketForce. “It grew out of both our experiences with live events and promotion, which we were doing for his nonprofit organization, YouthForce,” she says. “We began as an Arizona ticketing agency and have grown it to a full ticketing solution provider across all 50 states and Canada.”
Jo Michel has more than two decades of experience in the ticketing industry in Australia and the United Kingdom, and the list of organizations that she’s worked with over the years has tied her into some of the most noteworthy events Down Under and “across the pond” of that time span — the Sydney 2000 Olympics Arts Festival, the Sydney Film Festival, the Brisbane Festival, the Edinburgh International Festival, the Australian Opera, The Adelaide Fringe and so many more.
Angela Higgins founded the specialist consultancy, Antix Management, in 2007 to provide sales and ticketing strategy for live events across Australia and New Zealand. Before becoming her own boss, she held an array of decision-making roles at such organizations as Disney Theatrical Productions, Backrow Stage Productions and Ticketek. A decade after forming Antix, she joined fellow Aussie and industry veteran Jo Michel to co-found Mission Tickets to drive innovation in live event ticketing sales and strategy and support ticketing professionals education.
Lisa Thomas-Cutts is a big proponent of women in the ticketing industry. That’s no surprise considering the hard work she has put in over the years to achieve the position of Box Office Manager at the Columbus Civic Center and the Columbus Ice Rink in Georgia. She has worked at the facility since 2004.
A great team like the Golden State Warriors certainly calls for a great ticketing executive, and Golden State has one in Stevie Gray. As Vice President of Ticket Operations, she is responsible for overseeing the Warriors and Chase Center ticket operations and box office functions. A member of the International Ticketing Association (INTIX), Gray’s responsibilities include the day-to-day management of the Chase Center Box Office, as well as working with promoters, tours, and other clients on the development and execution of their ticketing strategies. In addition, she oversees key ticketing projects and initiatives for the Warriors, ranging from mobile ticketing to annual ticket mailings to inventory and data management.
Look forward to more Women in Ticketing profiles on the industry’s leading ladies in the New Year!
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Tags: Leadership , Women in Ticketing