Kletra Newton has been named chief operating officer of the San Mateo County Event Center.
The COO is a new position designed to provide more emphasis on strategic planning, customer satisfaction and efficiencies of the venue’s thriving corporate event business. “Kletra is a collaborator, a visionary and has a unique understanding of the importance of business to business relationships,” said Dana Stoehr, chief executive officer of the San Mateo County Event Center. “She is an exceptional event planner and at the same time an impressive senior executive. That combination is what makes our venue sought after by seasoned event planners who depend on venue collaboration and event expertise for their corporate event success.”
Newton joined the event center management team in 2014 to assist in onboarding of the venues in-house food and beverage services. In 2016, she was tapped to assume responsibility as director of event sales and services. While originally hired in a leadership role, her venue responsibilities expanded exponentially as she implemented a new vision for the event center. These executive responsibilities resulted in her being named chief operating officer in less than four years after joining the center’s management team.
Newton, the first minority woman to hold an executive position at the event center, has managed over 500 events, as large as 25,000 guests. Her unwavering commitment to guest satisfaction and increased efficiencies is evident in the numbers. Under Newton’s leadership, the event center’s corporate business has increased 25 percent. During the same period, the event center achieved its highest grossing sales month in a decade.
“Our mission is to transform the guest experience,” said Newton. “Our commitment to that mission is why our corporate business continues to thrive. In less than two years, our team has reinvigorated its event planning processes, procedures and precision. We understand our event planners’ needs and we share their goals,” said Newton.
“I have worked with Kletra on some large-scale events which demanded a high level of attention to detail and with lots of flexibility,” said James Kim, corporate events manager for Netflix Events. “Kletra was an amazing partner and really made you feel like she was invested in the success of your event. Her communication style was straight and to the point which made the entire planning process very smooth and stress free.”
“Kletra, is a true event professional,” said Ellie Platis, senior event producer for Electronic Arts, Inc. “Her passion and perfection in her work exceeds clients’ expectations.”
“I view my role as COO not only as the senior executive leader of our venue’s event business, but also as an executor of strategy, a change agent, a corporate partner, a mentor and a complement to our CEO’s knowledge and penchants,” said Newton.
Newton is a certified event planner. She is a member of the International Association of Venue Managers, Meeting Professionals International and the Professional Business Women of California.
The San Mateo County Event Center is the Peninsula’s premier event space and place to meet in the Bay Area. The event center includes 195,000 square feet of facility, a 100,000 square foot exposition hall, ample outdoor activity space and 48 acres of parking. This venue is also the location of the San Mateo County Fair, an event that attracts more than 120,000 Bay Area guests each year. For more information and to schedule a site visit www.smcec.co.