Maria Manzella has accepted a new role as the Director of Tourism.  Maria joined the bureau in 2010 as a Sales Manager and going forward, she will continue to promote New Orleans in Latin America, Canada and the Asian/Pacific markets.  In addition to maintaining her role in these markets, she will assume increased leadership responsibilities within the Tourism Department.

Leslie Straughan was promoted to the role of Sr. Sales Manager.  Leslie has been with the NOCVB for a remarkable 18+ years with her most recent industry focus being primarily retail sales agents, cruise groups and destination weddings in New Orleans.  In her new role, Leslie will now represent the NOCVB in the European market.

Olivia Celata joined the NOCVB as a Tourism Intern in September of 2015 and assumed her new role as an Administrative Services Coordinator in the Tourism department.  Olivia is a recent graduate of Tulane University where she obtained her degree in Marketing with a minor in Management.  While completing her studies at Tulane, she served as an intern for The Solomon Group in 2014 and 2015 where she liaised with the Essence Festival as their credentialing specialist.  She also served as an Academic Services Assistant for the Law School and as a Tulane Student Ambassador.  

Rachel Funel joined the CVB as a tourism sales manager.  With a BA in Communications from Loyola and a MS in Business Project Management from Boston University, Rachel began her career in hospitality back in 2009.  With positions ranging from special events and marketing, to promotions coordinator and most recently as area sales, events and marketing manager with Expotel Hospitality Services, LLC, her background and experience make her a perfect fit for our tourism team.  

Tayla Young joined the Tourism department as a new intern.

Convention Sales and Services

Angela Zografos comes to the NOCVB after a brief stint with Brooke Companies where she functioned as an Executive Admin to the Chief Medical Officer and Assistant VP of Hospital Operations for a local area hospital.  Prior to joining Brooke, Angela served as an Executive Assistant and Sr. Administrative Assistant at Service Corporation International and preceding that role, she held the post of Office Manager for A Regal Limo Service.  Recently, Angela returned to school and in 2013 obtained her Business Management degree with a focus on Entrepreneurship from Delgado Community College.  Angela will join us in her new role as the Administrative Assistant to Cara Banasch, Sr. Vice President of Convention Sales & Strategy.  


Beverly Breakfield joined us back in May of 2015 as a temporary employee in our finance department and now has officially joined us as a full-time permanent accounting clerk.  She has been working in the accounting field since 2003, first starting off as an administrative assistant/accounting clerk with Bayou State Security Services, Inc., and more recently as an office manager with Vescom Coporation.  Her experience ranges from AC/AP to payroll and HR management. 


Tien Tran rejoined the IT department as an intern.