Meet Caroline Pidroni, head of the Switzerland Convention & Incentive Bureau, based in New York; Member since 2008  

 

Caroline Pidroni started in the incentive industry in 1997 and joined SITE in 2008 because, she says, “It’s a well-respected industry association and provided me with the opportunity to stay connected with colleagues and expand my professional network.”

Four years ago she became VP CSR of the Northeast SITE chapter to give back to the community through a number of social and charitable outreach programs.

Caroline was an accidental incentive industry professional. “It was actually a combination of accidental opportunity or perhaps serendipity. I was living in London working as an au pair--cliché, but true-- anyway while there I realized in perhaps a wistful, or melancholic moment of nostalgia that as much as I loved traveling and exploring I also missed and wanted to stay connected to home. One day I walked up and knocked on the door of Switzerland Tourism in London and asked if they had an opening. They eventually did and I got an opportunity to combine two ‘loves’ and the rest, as they say, is history.”

One of her former bosses was a great mentor, “a Renaissance man before I truly understood what that was. An intellectual, a psychiatrist, a creativity researcher, a philosopher, a poet, an author, philanthropist, artist… A truly fascinating, inspiring and dynamic person.” 

One of the most memorable trips they’ve done for a group is one many years ago with a group of British event planners to Ticino, Switzerland. “We visited the Verzasca Dam in Switzerland where James Bond ‘On Her Majesty's Secret Service’ was filmed and one participant asked if he could do the bungee jump? The thing was he would only do it if someone else from the group did it as well.  No one was brave (or crazy/stupid) enough to join him…  I didn't want to let the client down, so I went ahead and jumped too. Scary and amazing,” Caroline says.

Relationships Caroline has developed through the years are her greatest source of pride in her career. “I have developed a network of tremendous colleagues within this industry, competent, dependable and full of integrity. Many of them have become good friends (some of my best friends).”

She’s also proud of her stint as the interim director of Switzerland Tourism India. “It wasn’t a planned assignment and definitely was a little disruptive – we figured things out and once I got there and settled in, it became one of the most fulfilling and interesting experiences of my career.”

All of Caroline’s close family is in Switzerland so when she’s not working she spends time with her family and close friends “as most expats tend to do,” she says. “I love to cook, bake and entertain. I also work with several charitable organizations throughout the year whenever possible. One of the most fulfilling is “Gods Love We Deliver” which I've done every Thanksgiving for the past several years.”

Caroline likes movies that make her think, songs that make her feel and books that help her grow, imagine and dream and food that “makes my mouth and belly happy.”

The best piece of advice she’s ever gotten? “It always seems impossible until it’s done.”

 

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