Magazine Online    The Authority On African-American Conventions, Incentives, & Leisure Travel
Local Hero
"I enjoy the process of helping my clients have a great conference in Rochester," boasts James, who is proud to be a native Rochesterian. In fact, over the years he has become friends with many of the planners and members of the organizations with whom he has worked.

His challenges include working with clients to keep attendance strong in this present economy. "Being a second tier city, it can sometimes be a challenge to compete with communities and cities that are much larger with bigger airports, etc." James laments. One of the solutions James has found for this is to make sure Rochester is a good fit. "If it's a good fit, we tend to book more than we lose." James knows it's a great feeling to have a group come to Rochester and have a terrific meeting. Not only is it good economically, but it's also good for the community and the participants.

Many people who attend a conference in Rochester come back for a vacation. Rochester has a lot of history with the Underground Railroad. In fact, Harriet Tubman's house is 35 minutes from downtown. It is where Frederick Douglass published the Northstar and his burial site city. Eastman Kodak, Xerox, and Bausch and Lomb were all founded in Rochester along with Western Union. Close to Niagara Falls and home to Garth Fagan Dance, Rochester has over $300 million current developmental projects. Similar to many other cities, it is experiencing a core renaissance with many housing units, condos, entertainment and restaurants coming on board. Rochester is holding its own based on the many relationships that were formed and continue to be cultivated. James is continuing to do his part.

Born in Rochester, James has two brothers and one sister. He is married with three children, two boys and a girl, who have the privilege of experiencing their great grandfather, Arcee James Sr., who is one of James' strongest inspirations. Arcee is ninety-one years old and lives by the creed, "Family First." A creed James has adopted. Due to circumstances beyond his control Arcee never finished grade school, but has a doctorate in life experience and common sense.

James proudly states, "My grandfather put three kids through college, owns two homes in Florida and always told me that a man is remembered by his character and to make sure your word is always your bond." James has carried on that legacy. He puts family first. A graduate from Florida A&M University in marketing, he serves on several boards, including Volunteers of America, Frederick Douglass Resource Center and Housing Opportunities/Rural Opportunities. He is a member of Religious Conference Management Association (RCMA) and the National Coalition of Black Meeting Planners Association (NCBMP).

In any spare time, James enjoys golfing, reading, theatre, jazz and building Lego structures with his children. Building those structures the same way he builds relationships, one at a time!

James can be reached at (800) 677-7282.
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