Magazine Online    The Authority On African-American Conventions, Incentives, & Leisure Travel
by: Cheray O'Neal
Disney's business motto "Ideas aren't just born, there made," follows suit with Garrison's journey. Originally from Philadelphia PA. Garrison attended North Carolina University majoring in business administration. "I came out to Los Angeles and couldn't find a job, went to the Urban League's job fair, and a month later got a job at The Westin," he says. Garvin's 22-year experience has afforded him a variety of opportunities. Starting as a management trainee of food/beverages, Garrison has been assistant manager, assistant director of human resources, front desk manager, special projects manager and sales manager. "Make sure you learn as much as you can of what you're trying to do," and that he did. In 2002 he landed the grand responsibility as senior sales manager of Disneyland Destination Resort in Anaheim California. Having to cover the southeast territory, the most challenging aspect of his job "is also the best part of my job. People know Disney as a family destination; what they don't know is that we do serious meetings".

With over 186,000 sq ft. of meeting space, there's no doubt Disney can get down to business. Garvin's warm personality and vast knowledge can soothe the most suspicious planner and calm their angst. His hands-on approach and down to earth persona is convincing. "We'll sit down and talk about important issues and separate that from what you want." His expertise services your mission and supports your budget needs. "This is a service-based industry. You do it because you enjoy it, not because you get paid to do it."

Amen to that. No wonder Garrison has consistently met his numbers. "We get evaluated on how well we do at the end of the year. My success is I've been able to reach my numbers every year." That's quite an achievement, seeing that when people think Disney, they think Florida. According to Garrison, " it's a trust factor. You have to be honest, forthright and you have to deliver what's important to the client".

Speaking of which, Garrison also works hard to expose Disney to the African-American and Hispanic markets. "I will go to the National Coalition of Black Meeting Planners conferences, do exhibit booths, trade shows, sales calls, read periodicals, and host receptions. The special markets like to network, so you get to know people and it's done by word of mouth."

No matter which avenue Garrison takes he always walks in integrity "if you can be honest and look yourself in the mirror everyday knowing you did the best job, that's all you can do." From management trainee to senior sales manager, Garrison's life path is full. "My experience was perfect because I got allowed to go to all the different departments and see how they operate, so when I talk to a client and explain all we can do for them, I'm not guessing."

This man walks with passion, experience, integrity and a smile. I'm convinced.

Garrison can be reached at (714) 956 6511.
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