Meet the team
Darlene LyonsExecutive Vice President
As the head of T3 Events Group, Darlene provides the vision, strategic planning and guidance to serve clients, grow the group and deliver blockbuster experiences for clients and their event attendees. She oversees every aspect of the events the group puts on, helping plan and build spectacular events. In her over-three-decade events management career, Darlene has designed and managed over 5,000 events, ranging from 100 attendees to those with over 35,000. She has won over 15 awards for event promotion and effective ad campaigns, including Style Magazine’s People’s Choice awards for three consecutive years.
Rich HeitkeSenior Meeting Architect
As senior event architect with T3 Events Group, Rich oversees negotiations and management of contracts with vendors, talent, hotels and venues. He excels at designing learning-conducive atmospheres for groups of all sizes as well as creating events from the ground up, from concept, to goal development, budgeting, site analysis, pre-event detailing, on-site management and return on investment analysis. Rich has over two decades of events management experience and holds Certified Meeting Professional and Certified Government Meeting Professional designations.
Kara MenkeSenior Event Planner
Kara brings over two decades of event planning experience to her role as senior event planner with T3 Events Group. She has helped execute over 1,000 events in her career. In her role, she works directly with clients to ensure all their needs are met. In addition, Kara manages room management, VIP support, logistics, hospitality services, breakout meeting design, and food and beverage décor. Prior to joining the T3 Sixty team, she was the director of catering and conference services at the WeKoPa Casino Resort for eight years and holds Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Fine Arts Dance.
Janessa FieldsGuest Experiences Director
As guest experience director, Janessa oversees the interactive elements of the events T3 Events Group puts on. Her role includes procuring talent and entertainment, setting up and managing green rooms and all special handling for any VIPs, talent and celebrities involved with events. Janessa has over 15 years of customer service experience including six years in the nonprofit world, where she gained valuable experience in fundraising, event planning and logistics.
Yinka FreemanSenior Digital Event Manager
Yinka Freeman has 15 years of event planning, coordination, and design, including national and international hospitality experience. In addition, Freeman has an extensive sales background with companies that include the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series, Hilton Hotels, Wyndham Hotel Group, and Behind the Scenes Catering & Events.
Michael SchusterEvent Coordinator
In his role as event coordinator, Michael manages the registration and guest relations components of the events T3 Events Group puts on. He also helps manage support software the group uses and helps with materials, setup at events and customer service and support. Michael has over a decade of events management experience and has helped produce and manage over 400 events in his career.
Beth QuiggSenior Event Planner
As senior event planner with T3 Events Group, Beth brings two decades of event management experience to the seamless execution of all event logistics supporting T3’s larger conferences and conventions. Beth holds a B.A. from Virginia Tech, a Meeting Certificate from Northern Virginia Community College and CEM and CMP professional designations. She was previously with Homes.com where she oversaw all national and local marketing efforts for events, and Move, Inc. where she managed the team responsible for the brand and sales efforts of realtor.com at all live events including 13 national tradeshows and the realtor.com training roadshow which visited over 45 cities annually.
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