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International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM) Selects Richard
"Dick" Shaff as the 2011 Recipient of the International Convention
Center Conference (ICCC) Lifetime Achievement Award

August 18, 2011 - Richard "Dick" Shaff, general manager of San Francisco’s Moscone Center and regional vice president for SMG, has been selected as the 2011 recipient of the International Convention Center Conference (ICCC) Lifetime Achievement award from the International Association of Venue Managers, Inc. (IAVM).

The award is presented to those individuals recognized by their peers for their outstanding contributions to both IAVM and the convention center industry.  Shaff joins a small, select group of individuals so honored.  Past recipients have included Thomas Liegler, CFE, Don Jewell, CFE, Jimmie Fore, Cliff Wallace, CFE and John Christison, CFE.

Shaff began his career in 1965 as the assistant general manager of the Long Beach (California) Convention Center. In 1981, he and his wife Marilyn moved to San Francisco upon his appointment as general manager of the Moscone Center for SMG, the world’s largest private operator of public assembly venues.

Upon learning of his selection, Shaff remarked, “I can think of no greater honor than to be recognized by your peers for contributions you have made to the industry you love so much. It is equally as much an honor to join the very prestigious group of prior recipients all of whom I have had the pleasure of working with over the past 45 years. This is a wonderful and rewarding industry and profession.”

As a 45-year member of IAVM, Shaff has served on numerous committees and as a member of the Board of Directors. He was selected as Chairman of the IAVM Foundation in 1988-89, served as President of the organization in 1994-95, and received the association’s highest honor, the Charles A. McElravy Award, in 2002.

Shaff has been a member of many industry related organizations such as ASAE, PCMA, and IAEE for over 25 years. He is an ex-officio member of the San Francisco Travel Association, a member of the San Francisco Chamber of commerce, a Board member of the 5th and Mission Garage and a Trustee of the IATSE 16 Pension Plan. He was also listed as one of the most influential people in the trade show industry by Tradeshow Week.

“We are very proud that Dick has been recognized with this lifetime achievement award,” said Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association.  “No one could be more deserving.  Dick is an outstanding partner to SF Travel and a stellar asset to San Francisco’s tourism industry.”

Reflecting back on his years in the convention center business, Shaff stated, “I have had the pleasure of working for three of the most influential men in our industry, Win Hanssen, Denzil Skinner and Wes Westley, and I hope that in some small way I have contributed to the future success of those that have worked for me.”

The San Francisco Travel Association is a private, not-for-profit organization that markets the city as a leisure, convention and business travel destination.  With more than 1,500 partner businesses, San Francisco Travel is one of the largest membership-based tourism promotion agencies in the country. Tourism, San Francisco's largest industry, generates in excess of $8.3 billion annually for the local economy. The San Francisco Travel business offices are located at 201 Third St., Suite 900, San Francisco, CA 94103.  San Francisco Travel also operates the Visitor Information Center at Hallidie Plaza, 900 Market Street at the corner of Powell and Market streets.  For more information, call 415-974-6900 or visit

Laurie Armstrong 
Director, Media Relations-US & Canada
201 Third Street, Suite 900
San Francisco, CA  94103-3185
T  415.227.2615

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Also See: San Francisco Travel Association Releases Economic Impact Figures for 2010 and Results of Year-long Visitor Profile Research; Visitors Up 3.1% and Visitor Spending Up 6.2% from 2009 / March 2011

San Francisco CVB Releases 2009 Tourism Figures; Visitors to San Francisco Down 5.8%, Visitor Spending Down 7.8% from 2008 / March 2010

San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau Reports Visitor Spending Up 3.3% for 2008 / May 2009

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