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The Group Travel Leader Going on Faith Select Traveler

Meeting Leaders: Liz-Beth Lauck

Executive Profile

Name: Liz-Beth Lauck

Title: Manager, Global Accounts

Organization: HelmsBriscoe

Location: Gulfport, Florida

Birthplace: West Bend, Wisconsin

Career History

Director of Community Relations, Tampa Bay Rays (1995–2005)

Senior Meeting Planner, Franklin Templeton (2005–2020)

Manager of Global Accounts, HelmsBriscoe (2020–present)

Julius Caesar famously said, “experience is the best teacher,” and Liz-Beth Lauck is a prime example of someone who learned the necessary skills on the job.

“It’s not something they teach you in school — you’ve got to work and gain experience,” Lauck said. “I would never have thought of what I do now as a career when I first got into the workforce, but I evolved into this position.”

Lauck started her career working as an administrative assistant for an advertising agency. But when it shuttered, she decided to embark on the adventure of a lifetime and move to Switzerland to work as an au pair.

“When my office closed up shop, I was 23 and suddenly without a job,” she said. “This opportunity to go to Switzerland and be a nanny came up through some people my parents knew, and it was a very cool experience to have.”

Since then, Lauck has traveled around the globe, visiting places like England, the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Canada, Mexico, China and many points in between.

After her childcare stint, Lauck returned stateside and worked with a development company responsible for the $93 million restoration of St. Petersburg, Florida’s historic Vinoy Hotel and Resort, which had been vacant since the mid-1970s.

“It was very cool to be a part of,” she said. “I learned a lot about development, construction, the history of the hotel — it was a 10-year project, and it really helped turn St. Petersburg around. It was a renaissance for downtown St. Pete, because back then it was just kind of a sleepy, boring downtown. Now it’s so vibrant and packed full of people of all different age groups.”

As a part of the owner and developer’s team, Lauck stayed on board when the company’s attorney approached her about his next project, parlaying her job into a marketing role with the area’s new baseball team, the Tampa Bay Rays.

“The Vinoy project had finished, and the Tampa Bay Rays was an expansion franchise just coming into town and was a brand-new organization,” she said. “I was one of the first employees of the Tampa Bay Rays, which was pretty cool. The team hadn’t started playing yet, and we spent a year getting things going. They let me create my dream position — community relations — which was perfect because I had come to know so many people during the development phase. I helped to get players out there representing the team, meeting people. And it helped grow the organization and the fan base.”

After a decade, Lauck made the move to financial corporation Franklin Templeton, where she worked first as an event planner and later a meeting planner. She stayed with the company for 15 years before moving to HelmsBriscoe at the height of the pandemic — which for her was an ideal time to learn the ropes of her new role matching groups with the hotels and venues for their meetings.

“It was a great time to start so I could build my client base,” she said. “In the middle of 2022, the floodgates opened. I love being able to connect properties and destinations with groups, make those connections and build relationships.”

Tips from Liz-Beth Lauck

• Meet as many people as you possibly can; talk to anyone and everyone. You never know where your next client or job may come from.

• Relationships matter — never burn bridges.

• Be flexible and go with the flow. It’s imperative to be organized and have structure. But  you also need to keep an open mind and accept there will be times you need to pivot.