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Friday, Dec 9, 2022

Executive Profile

Bella Heule, president and chief executive officer of the World Trade Center San Diego, is responsible for strategic leadership and management, fundraising and community relations. WTCSD is a trade association that provides comprehensive international trade services and key global contacts to facilitate and expand trade for regional and worldwide clients.


Best business decision: Hiring WTCSD team.

Best way to keep a competitive edge: Focus on mission and core competencies.

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Biggest missed opportunity: Media outreach.

Biggest ongoing challenge: Awareness that WTCSD is a great resource for local companies wanting to expand international business and trade opportunities.

Essential business philosophy: Build relationships and success will come.


Most important lesson learned: Delegate and leverage others’ expertise.

Worst business decision: Hired

accounting temp that stole staff identities.

Yardsticks of success: Bottom line and fun.

Most influential book: “The Drifters,” by James A. Michener, which inspired me to travel 10 months in 1986 through China, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand.

Most like to meet: My father’s stepmother, deceased many years before I was born, who nurtured four children in Switzerland during the Great Depression.

Words that describe you: Energetic, genuine.

How is business currently versus a year ago: Public sector support down, but membership and sponsorship up an average of 23 percent over last year.

How do you motivate staff: Bonus of time off for exceeding budget.

What is the secret to your success: Can easily engage people.


Favorite quote: “It’s not the men in my life that count, it’s the life in my men” — Mae West.

Goals yet to be achieved: Instant recognition of what WTCSD is and does; increase WTCSD’s cash reserve; buy another Volkswagen Westfalia to explore with and relax in while other two goals are being pursued.

Guiding values: Relationships, achievement, freedom.

How you plan to grow the business: Strategy, focus, focus, focus.

Largest risk: Procrastination due to tenuous economy.

— Andrew Schweizer


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