How did you get your start in the industry? 
I answered Spirit Cruise’s ad in the Bergen Record newspaper 23 years ago – before computers! They didn’t want to hire me because, although I had extensive B2B sales experience, I didn’t have the required hospitality background. After finally hiring me, they kept me in the background for a few months until I finally got a break when the rest of the sales team traveled to a week-long conference. After being on the front lines with customers for a week, there was no going back to studying menus & deck plans when they all returned. When I left there years later, I’d worked my way up to being a Senior Corporate Sales Manager with a team of 5.
 
How many years have you been in the industry? A total of 23 years and I started Smooth Sailing Celebrations 13 years ago.
 
What is your favorite thing about our industry?
I love meeting new people and making connections. I enjoy referring business to other people and, because what goes around comes around, I’m grateful when people refer my service to their clients. Every day is different, which appeals to my Gemini side.

What is the best career advice you’ve received? The day one of the captains told me I was meant to be a business owner instead of an employee. He planted the seed in my mind, even though I told him he was crazy at the time. Also: It’s easier to apologize than to ask permission.
 
If you were not in this industry, what would you be doing right now? Either a teacher or a librarian. I love to share information with people and I equally love being surrounded by books.
 
Where did you grow up? West New York in Hudson County until I was 12 and then Clifton, NJ.
 
What is your favorite book? Every book written by Elizabeth Berg, who writes about strong women and their friendships.
 
Describe your perfect day off: One that is 48 hours long so that I have all the time I need to work out, cook, read, work, and meet husband, daughters & friends for dinner.
 
How long have you been a member of MPI? About a decade, I believe
 
What do you love about the MPI New Jersey Chapter?
I’ve made wonderful friends and contacts through MPI. Just last night, we had Homeland Security sailing with 525 guests and that was because I’d met & networked with Saira Kianes, CMP at previous MPI meetings.

Name: Camille Cerria
Occupation: Nautical Event Planner / Owner
Planner or Supplier: Supplier
Current Employer:
Smooth Sailing Celebrations


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