Meryl Hellring recently left the travel and tourism promotion industry to join Tickets for Kids Charities, a Pittsburgh-based nonprofit organization dedicated to providing disadvantaged children and their families with tickets to the region’s premier sporting and live entertainment events. Ms. Hellring assumed the Communications Director position during the fall of 2011 and began researching potential donors and creating the plans for the charity’s fundraising event, Annual Appeal. Ms. Hellring handles all communications with outside vendors, donors, and ticketing partners to ensure the organization’s continued funding and access to tickets. Prior to Tickets for Kids, Meryl Hellring served the Pittsburgh travel and tourism industry as the Tourism Sales Manager for VisitPittsburgh. In this role for over three years, Ms. Hellring encouraged tourists from across the world to add Pittsburgh and the surrounding countryside to their itineraries through extensive outreach efforts, including trade show attendance, social media efforts, and sales initiatives. Her actions contributed to a significant increase in hotel occupancy during her tenure.Formerly, Meryl Hellring operated as the Group Sales Manager for Pittsburgh CLO, a nonprofit theatrical group. With the goal of increasing group ticket sales, Ms. Hellring liaised with corporate partners, educational institutions, and the hospitality industry in the Pittsburgh region. Working with a six-show summer program and a shorter holiday event schedule, Ms. Hellring increased group ticket sales by nearly 250 percent in two years.Experienced at promoting Pittsburgh and its cultural and regional attractions, Meryl Hellring was elected by her peers to serve on the executive board of Destination: Greater Pittsburgh for four consecutive years. Ms. Hellring is a graduate of the College of Notre Dame of Maryland and a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.