Toby Babich is the president and CEO of Breckenridge Resort Managers, and oversees all aspects of marketing, accounting and day to day operations of the company. Additionally, he guides the strategy and direction of the company, ensuring focus on the guiding principles on which the company was founded. Toby is an extremely active member of the vacation rental community, specifically in the realm of marketing, serving on many boards and committees over his business career. He has been extensively involved with the VRMA, serving as a three-term Board member, treasurer and current president elect among many other roles he has served within the organization. Toby also is a member of the Community Associations institute, where he holds the Certified Manager of Community Associations designation as well as an Association Management Specialist designation. Additionally, Toby is an experienced real estate agent, holding an active Colorado license with a resort and second homes property specialist certification. Toby spends his free time with his wonderful family, skiing, working on/riding in his jeep and volunteering his time to serve his local community and the vacation rental industry.
Matthew Barnes is the head of content at Guesty, a cloud-based platform designed to simplify the complex operations of property management companies. He has been working in online content for six years and is always looking for new ways to engage a growing audience. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Heather Bayer is CEO of one of Ontario's leading rental agencies with 200 registered properties. She has owned numerous rental properties in the UK and Canada, and writes extensively on topics relating to the vacation rental industry worldwide. As presenter of the Vacation Rental Success podcast, Heather has interviewed industry leaders, property management executives and home owners, and has published over 150 episodes with more than 170,000 downloads. Her blog at Cottageblogger.com was launched in 2005 and has over 500 articles in the archives. A passionate advocate for raising standards in the industry, she tirelessly works with the registered owners within her agency to grow their businesses and help them maximize their income.
Pierre Becerril is a travel innovator and entrepreneur who currently serves as CEO of Transparent. Pierre co-founded Transparent in 2016 together with hospitality industry veterans. Previously he co-founded Seeusoon, a travel meta search engine offering vacation rental and flight packages. Pierre began his career at BBVA, Santander and Rothschild & Cie as an investment banker where he participated in several M&A transactions as well as Spain’s largest flotation since the financial crisis with the IPO of airports operator Aena. He earned his master’s degree in finance from Audencia Business School, France.
Steve Bjerklie is a freelance writer who has published internationally as well as nationwide. He has covered politics, sports, culture, food and wine, and agriculture, among many other topics. He has written articles about the vacation rental industry for VRMA since the 1990s. He lives on a small farm in northern New England.
After experience as a marketing manager with L'Oreal and a consultant with McKinsey, Eric Bordier started his vacation rental company in Prague in 2004. RENTeGO was the first in Prague to propose online reservation and use codelocks. Because the U.S. cloud software he was using did not support multilingual, he leveraged the API and the help of great developers to make a multilingual website and that grew into VR booster – developing custom websites for U.S. companies.
Sandra Brahn has led Vacasa through more than 130 acquisitions and has over 20 years of M&A experience.
As a native of the Ocean City, Maryland, area, tourism and the beach lifestyle are in Kirsten’s blood. While her original life plan included a path in veterinary medicine, Kirsten applied for a seasonal position with a local real estate company in 2004 and has been a part of Ocean City’s world of vacation rentals ever since. Kirsten joined Vantage Resort Realty in 2012 and quickly made the climb to a leadership role within the organization. With experience in just about every role within the vacation rental industry, she is often the go-to problem solver for the Vantage team.
Megan Cohen is VRMA’s interim executive director, leading strategic objectives of increasing membership, enhancing its products and services and strengthening its position in the industry through advocacy and public relations. Megan brings more than 25 years of strategic association management experience to VRMA. As a seasoned executive, she has managed the operations of three multimillion-dollar organizations in public outreach. She is a results-driven, well-organized professional known for visionary and analytical thinking.
Barry Cox co-founded SkyRun Vacation Rentals in 2004 after purchasing a second home and not finding any acceptable options for renting. He became SkyRun's CEO in 2010 after co-founding its initial location in Keystone, Colorado with Steve Falk, which they grew to 100 properties and $2M in revenue in three years.
Matt Curtis is the founder of GPS Policy Group, a government affairs consultancy with an eye on the vacation rental industry and protecting managers from bad regulations. He has worked in the vacation rental industry for more than six years and has been a member of VRMA since 2012. Matt is currently finishing his second term on the VRMA Board of Directors and has served as chair of the Government Affairs Committee for the past two years. Matt is also a board member for the North Carolina VRMA, South Carolina VRMA and Short Term Rental Association of California (STRACA) where he volunteers to help managers with local regulation challenges.
Michael Driedger is the co-founder and CEO of Operto Guest Technologies, a property operating system improving the guest experience and operational efficiencies for hotels, vacation rentals and serviced apartments. Prior to founding Operto in 2016, Michael had more than two decades of experience in architecture, building design and construction and has a passion for energy efficiency, sustainability and intelligent systems that are designed to improve our overall quality of life.
Ben Edwards has been positively affecting the real estate and vacation rental industries for nearly 20 years.
Susan Elliott-Smith is a freelance writer in the greater Chicago area with more than 20 years of experience cultivating and capturing stories for trade and professional associations and showcasing the member volunteers who support these organizations.
Andy Gaylord is a digital account manager at Bluetent, which works to help vacation rental managers succeed. Through direct booking websites, automated channel distribution and professional marketing services, Bluetent strives to connect you with travelers in new ways.
Jessica Gillingham is the director of Abode PR – a boutique public relations agency and consultancy specializing in working with clients in the international vacation and short-term rental space. Her clients include technology companies, large property managers and marketing associations. Jessica writes and speaks regularly on topics related to public relations, the short-term rental industry and the travel industry. She is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and a non-executive director of Visit Bath.
Paul Hanak is ICND’s director of digital marketing. Paul comes from a background of nearly a decade in marketing for a cation rental company in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He brings his years of experience in SEO, PPC, social media, email marketing and distribution management and applies his knowledge to the strategies of ICND’s clientele. He’s a proven leader and mentor for ICND’s marketing department and continues to help our clients improve their results and ROI.
DENIS J. HANKS
Denis J. Hanks currently sits as the full-time executive director of the statewide Florida Vacation Rental Managers Association. The association efforts support the $31 billion dollar per year Florida vacation rental market and hundreds of vacation rental managers, major attractions, online travel agents, national vacation rental industry vendors and other associates. The Florida VRMA is the voice of the short-term rental market across the state of Florida with tens of thousands of vacation rental units managed under its professional management companies.
Michael Harrington, 2018 VRMA president, is president of Topsail Realty Vacations in Surf City, North Carolina.
Greg Holcomb is the government relations manager for the Vacation Rental Management Association (VRMA). Greg leads the advocacy and government relations efforts for VRMA. He works with industry stakeholders, as well as state and local policymakers to address the professional property managers’ perspective on short-term rental issues. Greg has 16 years of public policy, political campaign and government relations experience. Prior to working for the VRMA, he served three terms as a city council member, where he held the claim of being the youngest elected official in his hometown’s history.
Sue Jones is the founder and managing director of KLS Group. Sue is an experienced HR professional who brings a fresh approach to her clients in the vacation rental industry, addressing their needs in a personalized manner. She is a veteran of the U.S. Navy, holds an MBA from Northeastern University and is both SHRM-SCP and SPHR certified. Today’s business landscape is completed; companies rely on KLS Group for all their human resource needs, from consulting to training to recruitment.
Doug Kennedy, KTN president, has been the lodging industry’s leading expert in hospitality sales and guest services training for over two decades. Over the years, he has conducted corporate-sponsored training for most of the major hotel brands. His monthly sales training articles inspire readers worldwide. Email Doug at email@example.com.
Russ Klettke is a business writer, providing strategic communications services to enterprises large and small in digital and print formats. Russ is a two-time Folio Eddie Award winner (2015 and 2017).
AMY L. KOENIG
Amy L. Koenig is a recognized professional with a 30+ year track record of positively impacting bottom line financial performance in challenging and diverse environments. In this new economy, Amy has dedicated herself to providing innovative product development solutions including market research, strategy marketing and sales management. Her keen interest in furthering the development of the vacation rental industry is derived from her prior involvement in resort real estate development and technology. Since 2010, Amy opened new markets in Colorado, Idaho, Utah, Florida and the Caribbean while holding the position of VP business development at Vacasa and VP marketing/operations at Utopian.
Ellie Madsen has more than a decade of experience with vacation rentals. After observing a need for reliable home services in the industry, she helped to create a services company that now offers management to properties of all sorts. Ellie works with Hawkeye Property Management in growth, marketing and operations, continually expanding the company throughout Montana.
Andrew McConnell is the co-founder and CEO of Rented.com, the first online marketplace that helps second homeowners find, compare and choose the best professional property managers. Andrew holds degrees from Harvard College, Harvard Law School and Cambridge University, and has worked with some of the world's largest public and private entities as a management consultant at McKinsey & Co., and as a director, Solutions Design at Axiom Global, Inc.
Steve Milo is founder and CEO of VTrips, with vacation rental homes and property MANAGEMENT companies throughout Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, New Mexico and Hawaii.
Natalee Pfeifer is the founder of Grow Social VR, an award-winning digital marketing agency and consultancy specializing in the vacation rental industry as well as technologies that benefit property managers and hosts. With more than 15 years of well-rounded experience in the vacation rental industry, she puts her skillset to use as an avid market researcher and marketing consultant (she wears many hats). You can readily find her at industry networking events; either presenting, managing the event or networking of course! She is a member of VRMA’s Marketing Committee and is a former VRHP Board of Directors member. Natalee grew up on the Outer Banks of North Carolina and currently resides on the sunny space coast of Florida.
Maureen Regan, past president of VRMA, has been involved in the vacation rental business since 1983 in southern Maine. She and her daughter own Seaside Vacation Rentals, an award-winning business in southern Maine. Maureen’s education includes dual master’s degrees from Vermont College and a B.A. from the University of Maine. Maureen has served as chairman of the board of the Greater York Region Chamber of Commerce, on the board of the Maine Beaches Association, and as a gubernatorial appointee to the Maine Tourism Commission. She was a founding member of the Vacation Rental Professionals of Maine and the New England Vacation Rental Professionals.
ANDREW S. RICCI
Andrew S. Ricci is the principal of Riccon Strategic Communications, a communications and public relations consulting firm. He regularly works with clients of all sizes to design and implement communications campaigns on their behalf.
Jeff Robertson has more than 25 years of marketing and sales experience in hospitality, consumer products and B2B services. At NAVIS, Jeff and his marketing team are responsible for evangelizing the NAVIS brand in a way that engages vacation rental professionals, hoteliers and company staff. He holds a B.S. in management from Bentley College, an M.B.A. in marketing from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business and is Pragmatic Marketing Certified. An avid 80s and jam/funk music fan, Jeff’s always listening or watching live when he’s not in the office.
Brandon Sauls founded InterCoastal Net Designs (ICND), a lead-focused vacation rental web development and marketing company, in 1999 with a passion for technology. Brandon, a graduate from University of South Carolina, began the company as a single entrepreneur and has grown the company to more than 40 employees. In more than 18 years of business, Brandon has become an expert in vacation rental website engineering and marketing.
Bill Schlosser is the “brand master” at Dr Brando, a full-service marketing agency specializing in helping technology providers build their brand in the vacation rental market.
Cady Stokes is content and publications associate for the Vacation Rental Management Association.
JODI TAYLOR REFOSCO
Jodi Taylor Refosco, 2019 VRMA president, is owner/partner of Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations & Sales in McHenry, Maryland.
Michelle Williams is the director of marketing for Atlantic Vacation Homes. Michelle came into the vacation rental industry in 2015 after spending nearly two decades as a digital consultant, specializing in user experience strategy and design.