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Patrick Colomer

By Patrick Colomer | Jun 17, 2021

I got my start in this industry at The Greenbrier, a historic luxury hotel in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. I started out managing the social golf programs and was quickly promoted to national sales manager overseeing the Northeast group sales market. In 2011, I was asked to move to New York to work remotely for the property. After arriving in the city, I quickly realized that I was destined to sell New York City hotels. I have worked for several iconic properties over my career and have enjoyed every minute of it.

This industry suits me well and I feel blessed every day to call myself a hospitality professional. I recently accepted the position of director of business development for Van Wagner, based in Manhattan. I will be focused on continuing to grow our footprint on the production side of the industry as it pertains to corporate in-person, hybrid and virtual events.

Serving as president of the MPI Greater New York Chapter (MPIGNY) for the last two years is certainly a significant part of my career. It has been an honor and privilege to serve on our board with so many talented individuals, too. You’re only as good as the people around you and I have been fortunate to be surrounded by some phenomenal professionals.

Just like everyone else, we had to completely change our strategy to get our chapter through COVID-19, and one major highlight of that revised strategy was that our chapter was awarded the 2021 MPI RISE Award for Marketplace Excellence. We created a brand-new event called MPIGNY Education & Expo that we produced live on Broadway alongside our annual awards program this past October. It was a team effort across all facets of the chapter, and to execute such a successful event during the heart of a global pandemic is something we will never forget.

I think it’s easy to give in to a situation like COVID-19 and allow it to adversely affect your psyche and your overall demeanor. There were some very dark days in New York last year, but I’m the type of person who focuses on what he can control while shining a light on all the positives. If you keep life in perspective, it simplifies things and makes you appreciate all the blessings life bestows upon us even in the toughest of times.

I was one of those people who didn’t step up in my first few years as a member of MPIGNY. But one day, I was riding the subway to an event with Meghan Schilt (past chapter president), and she told me that I could be making a stronger impact on our chapter and the industry as a whole. It was as if a lightbulb went off in my mind. It’s a funny thing when a conversation can really resonate with a person. She believed in me, saw my potential and, more importantly, encouraged that potential by vocalizing it to me. I joined our Golf Committee a few days later and the rest, as they say, is history. What Meghan taught me that day is to truly encourage those around you. A big part of being an effective leader is nurturing talent and showing them that you believe in their potential. I have made it a point to pass that along as my career has progressed, too.  

Photo by Laura Jane Brett Photography.



Patrick Colomer

Patrick Colomer is director of business development for Van Wagner Productions and president of the MPI Greater New York Chapter. He has been an MPI member since 2010.