Smart City Spotlight: Matt Chavez (New General Manager)

Smart City Networks is thrilled to announce exciting developments for our San Diego Convention Center team. Matt Chavez, who previously worked as our dedicated Operations Manager at the Los Angeles Convention Center, has been appointed as our General Manager in San Diego. We are confident that Matt will thrive in his new leadership role, and we eagerly anticipate the beneficial influence he will bring to the San Diego community. We spoke with Matt and asked him a few questions regarding his big move and what he plans to bring to San Diego. Check out our interview below!

“I have always loved organized chaos and the ever-changing world of the trade show industry, so I am excited for this new adventure in San Diego.”

-Matt Chavez

What is your background with Smart City Networks?

M: I started working for Smart City Networks in November of 2011. I was a part-time technician based out of Anaheim, but traveled to our regional centers for a majority of my first year. I supported shows in San Diego, Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Santa Clara. The greatest thing about traveling is getting to see how other centers operate. I adopted the best practices at each and executed them in Anaheim. In 2013, I was promoted to Operations Manager in LA. During my time in LA, I continued to support other centers in a management role and joined multiple corporate task force to assist in the training of employees either hired or returning from the pandemic. 

With the General Manager position open in San Diego, what convinced you to apply, even with the big jump from different cities? 

M: I was very familiar and comfortable with San Diego since I spent most of my time there as a technician. Being an Operations Manager for the last 10 years has allowed me to create a strong team and enhance the overall operation in Los Angeles. I was ready for a new challenge and San Diego was the perfect opportunity. I was used to the “Big City” operations in LA due to our larger shows like Anime Expo, E3, and LA Auto Show. Now I get to assist with even larger shows like ESRI, OFC and San Diego Comic Con. I have always loved organized chaos and the ever-changing world of the trade show industry, so I am excited for this new adventure in San Diego.

What do you hope to bring to the San Diego Convention Center as its new General Manager? 

M: Leadership, knowledge, and a fresh perspective. I am joining a strong team in San Diego. One of our 10 business principals is “Continually Improve Processes”. I am a hands-on manager and I want to encourage and motivate my teams to be the best versions of themselves. I am incorporating my 10 years of operational experience with their existing knowledge of the events and the building to provide the best experience possible for our clients and attendees.  As Kasandra, our Customer Service and Sales Manager, would say, we are aiming to be the “Best in the West!!”

What are you most excited about in regards to your new position? 

M: I am excited to be in the Wall Street Journal’s #4 convention center in the country. I am excited to work in a new building and with a new team. The shows that San Diego will be hosting in the next few years are going to be exciting and fun. Again…organized chaos. It’s a great time for the building and the city and I am happy to be a part of it.

Thank you again Matt! We look forward to seeing all you accomplish for Smart City and the San Diego Convention Center! For more Smart City Spotlights, click the link!

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