Congrats to all the New Certifications (as of 4.1.2015)

February 2015 New Certifications

Tira Baror, CEM, Consumer Electronics Show

Andre M. Cholewinski, CMP, Meetings Management Group

Amy Pepin, CMP, International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA)

March 2015 New Certifications

Meredith Pallante, CMP, Consumer Electronics Show

Peter J. Pantuso, CTIS, American Bus Association

Amy Phillips Hanley, CMP, American Congress of Obstetricians & Gynecologists (ACOG)

Movers & Shakers as of 2.8.15

Michelle Beckner, CMP, CEM, CMM is now Senior Director, Meetings and Education at American Academy of Audiology

Lauren Benedict is now Vice President of Sales at Destination Marketing Association International

Tom Berkman is now Owner & General Manager at Omnia Housing

Eduardo Chaillo is now President at InterVISTAS Consulting Inc.

Jennifer Crouse is now Director, Meetings & Services at American Seed Trade Association

Melissa Ficek is now Associate Director, Meetings and Conferences at American Association of Collegiate Registrars & Admission Officers

Vanessa Finney is now President at Quercus, Inc.

Roselle G. Foley, CMP is now Senior Director Meetings & Membership at National Association of Chemical Distributors

Erin Freeborn is now Director of Meetings at National Insulation Association

Sara Hamilton is now Exhibits Manager at Association for Molecular Pathology

Aimee Hickox is now Director of Strategic Partnerships & Conferences at American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition ASPEN

Kari Jacobson Smith is now  Director Exhibition and Sponsorship Sales at the Optical Society of America

Joanne Kuriyan is now Exhibits Director at NAFSA: Association of International Educators

Kari Langerman is now Director Meetings & Conventions at Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America Inc.

Ray Luca is now Director of Expositions at PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies

Jim Pittas is now Senior Vice President at PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies

Marla Popkin is now Director of Meetings at Outdoor Power Equipment Institute

Maria E. Sarabia is now Director, Meetings & Events Consumer at Healthcare Products Association

Marc Seidman is now Vice President, Global Accounts at HPN Global

TaNika Switzer is now Project Coordinator at Association for Molecular Pathology

Arfa Syed is now Digital & Social Media Manager at Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association

Jessica Walgenbach is now Senior Director Meetings at National Ready Mixed Concrete Association

Donovan Woods is now Strategic Sales Initiatives Manager at National Association of Convenience Stores

Welcome New Members (as of 2.8.2015)

Anaheim – Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau –Kara Bowman, Director of Meeting Sales, Mid-Atlantic

Association of Clinical Research Professionals – ACRP – Beth O’Brien, Conference & Meetings Manager

Brede Exposition Services – Scott O’Keefe & Randy Shumaker, Sales Manager

 Connections Housing – Brad Weaber, CMP, Chief Innovation Officer

Courtesy Associates – Soncerray Bolling, Bethany Feinstein, Marika Lendl, Elizabeth Haxton, & Ella Greenberg, Meeting & Event Managers; Lauren Deaton, Strategic Account Director

Food Processing Suppliers Association – Alaina Herrera, Alex Stopa

Milad Mobtaker Shargh Company – Mostafa Zandieh, Advisor Organizer

NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association – Chris Blevins, Manager Accounts Receivable & Expo Sales Support

National Association of Chain Drug Stores – Darien Long, Registration & Membership Services Coordinator

National Association of College & University Business Officers (NACUBO) – Debi Cumbo, Director Business Development

National Association of Convenience Stores – Nicole Walbe, Membership Manager, Supplier Relations

Nomadic Display – Stacy Barnes, VP of Sales & Distribution; Dave Evensen, VP of Operations; Pat Goeke, President & CEO; Doug Turpin, Executive Director

PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies – Tracy Stout, VP Marketing & Communications

Projection Presentation Technology – Erick Alsheimer, Nicole Greene

Quercus Inc. – Chelsea Bailey, Executive Assistant

SMART Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Association – Heather Lester, Director of Meetings & Events

SmithBucklin Corporation – Min Kim, Lisa Kindred, Melanie Shanfield, Meeting & Event Managers

SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association – Ashley Patton

Welcome to a new year with IAEE DC!

AndyWelcome to a new year and a new ShowBuzz. 2015 is well underway and the board of directors for the Washington D.C. Chapter of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events is already making a difference with the delivery of this…our first electronic newsletter.

So why the change?

One of a handful of efforts that is going to make 2015 a transformational year for the chapter: the move to an electronic newsletter will help the chapter accomplish several strategic goals. First and foremost is ensuring our financial solvency.  While the chapter remains fiscally sound today, in years past it has often operated a yearly budget in the red in order to deliver the best experiences for our members. After some analysis of products, and thoughtful conversation, it was realized and agreed that one of the most significant ways to ensure continued fiscal responsibility without sacrificing the quality of our events was to move from a printed and mailed newsletter to an electronic piece.

In addition to the monetary savings, the board is excited to provide new way to engage the chapter and offer additional features that are only possible through an electronic format.  Designed to be interactive, ShowBuzz will allow members to become part of the conversation with comments and reaction to articles hosted on the chapter website.  Registration links will be included when appropriate to allow members to quickly sign up for events that interest them.  Interested in an ad you see…click it to go directly to the advertiser website and learn more.  Coming of age, ShowBuzz is evolving to fulfill its core mission more effectively; to provide essential information and share industry observations effecting local IAEE members.

What else is new this year?

There are several new initiatives that the membership can expect to see in 2015, as well as several important changes that will not be as obvious.  Supporting the new digital newsletter will be a more robust and effective website….including Capitol Ideas, the chapter’s blog which launched in 2014.  In addition to hosting articles published in ShowBuzz, the blog is intended to provide more opportunities for the membership to be involved and share best practices.

It is not only online that you will find new initiatives this year, the chapter is also planning to add to an impressive list of events.  One event in particular that I would like to highlight will be the chapter’s support of a new IAEE event in DC – Culture Creation.  Held at the Washington Hilton as part of the June 8th week of activities surrounding the second year of Exhibitions Day on Capitol Hill, Culture Creation is designed to give non-profits the opportunity to learn more about their own organizations.  This will be a day-long, interactive program that will shed light on the how organizational culture effects every department.  Immediately following the Culture Creation program, our chapter will host a reception also at the Washington Hilton.  More details for both the program and the event will be provided in the Spring once the program is finalized.

What will not be immediately seen, but surely felt will be the impact of our new Chapter Administrator.  Patti Steele of Steele Conferences was hired by the 2014 Chapter Board to the newly created positon and is already having a significant positive effect on the organization.  Tasked with providing tactical assistance for board initiatives, establishing consistent procedures for future boards, and ensuring chapter compliance, Patti is pushing me to do more with the my time as chair and empowering the 2015 board to make a difference.

So what does all of this mean to you?

Good question…but a better question would be to ask yourself what you want from your membership in IAEE and your chapter.  As chair, I am committing the chapter to delivering the best product and best opportunity for you to learn and advance in your career.  I am committing the chapter to creating opportunities for volunteerism and engagement that allow you to give back.  And I am committing the chapter to creating an environment where education is synonymous with fun and friends. It is up to you to get involved!  I invite you to comment on the articles in ShowBuzz and be part of the conversation.  I invite you to go to the website and request to be a volunteer….with the changes we are making we need you.  And I invite you to attend events, bring a co-worker, and help us expand our community.

There is a lot happening in 2015, and I could not be more excited to be the chair this year.  Our board of directors includes some long-standing members of our community as well as couple new faces.  We are passionate about our beliefs and what we feel is the right direction forward because we all care deeply about IAEE, the future of our chapter, and our members.  I would not have it any other way…and I welcome the year ahead.

Is Your Association’s Content Stale?


By: Aaron Udler, President, OfficePro, Inc., CTS, CEM

There comes a point in every person’s career in which they don’t recertify. Reasons vary from not caring about the certification, to forgetting to renew it (same as not caring), to even career growth. But wait – why would somebody not want to recertify in favor of career growth? Aren’t certifications supposed to promote career growth? How does this make sense?
Outside of the medical industries, most association’s certification holders are right out of college and typically renew their certification 3 to 4 times over the next 10 to 12 years. The #1 reasons their employers have them get certified is to learn the ins and outs of their industry. During these 10-12 years, these certification holders form their own industry networks and partnerships, have a social life in the industry, etc. Sound familiar?

But what happens after 12 years? Industry professionals are now into their 30’s and on a career path. At this point, they are either at the managerial or director level (some are also VP’s) and these professionals need business skills to increase their productivity in the office – skills which include manipulating an Excel spreadsheet with precision and efficiency, leadership skills, how to manage employees, etc, etc, etc. The list of topics go on and on. So instead of renewing their industry certification, the career growth continues outside of the association. This equates to lost revenue for the association, and often times, this is forever.
How much does it cost for your association to acquire a new member? How much does it cost to keep a current member happy? Now which of these two options cost less? If you said option 2, you are right! It takes more time, energy, and expense to acquire a new member than it does to keep a current member. So why aren’t more associations expanding their educational curriculum and targeting this demographic of future leaders?

Last month at Expo Expo, IAEE decided to expand its current education program by adding 2 hands-on computer training classes. One was titled “How to Create an Effective PowerPoint Presentation without Using Bullets” and the other was “Data & List Management using Excel”. Each session was 3 hours long and each student sat at their computer station. Not only was each session sold out at 15 students, but each session had a waiting list and proved that there is an industry demand for these types of courses.

Now there is an argument that the cost to create new content and classes is quite expensive, both monetary and in man-hours. Let me pick on the audio-video (AV) industry for a minute (I used to work for an AV association). What has changed in microphone technology over the past 50 years? How about speakers or mixers? Not much. How about your association? What has changed in your training curriculum? Do you think your members really want to hear about the same things year after year? So now you are going to ask “what’s the easiest, least expensive way to get around this and create new business training content”? Partnerships, sub-contracting, white-labeling, revenue sharing, etc. There are plenty of solutions out there to help your association’s educational curriculum grow. You just need to decide what works best for your group and get creative.

One final thought – If your association expanded their curriculum by offering business related classes, whether software or soft-skills, and attached Continuing Education Credits, do you think your association could keep members engaged into their 40’s? How about their 50’s? Do you think your certification base would grow? How about membership growth?
Another final-final thought – Training improves the organizations competitive edge: according to Nobel Laureate Gary Becker, a professor of economics and sociology at the University of Chicago, “Any company has to recognize that not only is a human capital of their employees a major asset, it is also a depreciating asset that needs continuing investment.”