Monthly Archives: June 2015

Association of Women in Events Announces Founding Board of Directors

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Association of Women in Events, a new organization launched in March 2015, has announced its founding board of directors. The association received over 65 applications for membership on the inaugural board, and founders spent several weeks vetting candidates for these important leadership roles. The Board of Directors is expected to guide the vision of the association throughout the first formative years and shape the community surrounding the organization.

The Association of Women in Events was founded by Carrie Abernathy, Tamela Blalock, Mas Tadesse Harris, Mary Higham, and Kiki Janssens. The mission of the organization is to provide women professionals in the meetings and events industry a place for sharing best practices, networking, professional development, career advancement and recognition. By the end of the 2015 year, AWE initiatives such as membership and education plan to be launched with the guidance and leadership of the board members.

“This specific group of board members are leaders in the events industry, and we feel each of them will truly encompass the mission of the organization and bring the association to life”, said co-founder Carrie Abernathy CMP, CEM, CSEP, “We are excited to start working on the future and building a community”.

The Founding Board of Directors will have one- and two-year roles. Board members were chosen from an array of fields to include media, government, corporate, and association markets. The board members represent several regions of the United States, with members hailing from Washington, D.C., Chicago, Las Vegas, Dallas, Los Angeles, Orlando and Denver. The founding board of director’s first in-person meeting will take place at the Hilton Washington, D.C., on July 23, 2015. The official Founding Board of Directors roster is available at or email

Young VIPs Unleash Creativity In ‘Make-Your-Own’ Icy Fun

Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre hosts underprivileged children for buka puasa

In the spirit of Ramadan, the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre (the Centre) brought smiles to 80 excited children from Living HOPE* and Persatuan Kebajikan Generasi Gemilang* (PKGG) when the youngsters were treated to the Centre’s sumptuous ‘Kampung Classics’ buka puasa buffet of an array of traditional and contemporary favourites.

But before sitting down to enjoy their meal, the young guests were invited to put on their creative hat for some ‘sweet, sticky, icy’ fun! Guided by the Centre’s chefs and team members, the children decorated stick ice cream to create their own signature lolly ice cream which they later happily slurped away as one of their buka puasa desserts.

A beaming Dr Peggy Wong, founder and chairman of Living HOPE, thanked the Centre for this annual outing which is “made extra memorable with a creative and fun activity.  The children look forward to the Centre’s buka puasa feast every year but it is extra special for those (children) who are breaking fast outside the home for the first time.”

“The children really enjoy the occasion as many never have the opportunity to visit the Centre or experience 5-star cuisine,” said Mr. Law Gin Kye, founder of PKGG. 

The Centre also presented goodie bags of sweet treats and duit raya to the young VIPs.

*Living HOPE is a charitable organisation whose mission is to provide food and education and to act as an education resource centre for children from hardcore poor families around the country.

*Persatuan Kebajikan Generasi Gemilang (PKGG) is a not-for-profit welfare organisation that sets out to raise an exemplary next generation and build stronger families. Its key focus areas are mentoring the next generation with leadership and life skills, equipping parents and youths to face cyber-related issues, and community development for marginalised communities in Malaysia.

ASAE Names the 2015 ‘Power of A’ Award Winners

WASHINGTON—ASAE will honor six associations with the 2015 Summit Award, which is the highest recognition under The Power of A Awards. The six organizations will accept their awards on September 30 during the 16th Annual Summit Awards Dinner at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.

The winners were selected by the Power of A Awards Judging Committee, and the committee received 140 entries, which is a 40 percent increase from last year. The awards are part of The Power of A  campaign, which ASAE launched in 2009 to increase awareness about issues that impact associations and to share the wealth of knowledge and resources available to the association community for policymakers and other audiences.

“We received so many fantastic entries this year, and each organization is to be congratulated on their efforts. The 140 submissions received represents the depth, reach, and lasting effect that association outreach of this nature provides. Each of these projects helps to showcase the power of associations and what we can accomplish,” said Hugh “Mac” Cannon, MPA, CAE, executive director of ACEC of Metropolitan Washington and chairman of The Power of A Awards Judging Committee. “This year’s judging committee was thoughtful in its consideration and diligent in its selection. While it was a difficult decision for the committee to select the six Summit Award winners, we are honored to have been able to do so.”

This year’s winners are:

American Society of Mechanical Engineers
New York, NY
Program: Future Engineers 3D Space Challenges

Edison Electric Institute
Washington, DC
Program: Center for Energy Workforce Development

Emergency Nurses Association
Des Plaines, IL
Program: Ebola Crisis Response

Military Officers Association of America
Alexandria, VA
Program: MOAA Military Caregivers Assistance Program

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
Alexandria, VA
Program: We Honor Veterans

Tulsa Regional Chamber
Tulsa, OK
Program: Tulsa Regional OneVoice Agenda

“Congratulations to all the 2015 Summit Award winners for creating and implementing exceptional programs that are influencing society,” said ASAE President & CEO John H. Graham, IV, FASAE, CAE. “We look forward to acknowledging their achievements at the Summit Awards Dinner, and those who attend will be inspired.”

In addition to the six Summit Award winners, the Power of A Awards Judging Committee selected 30 association programs to receive a Power of A Gold Award and 31 associations to receive a Power of A Silver Award.

ASAE’s Summit Awards Dinner will bring together association executives, industry partners and business and community leaders for an evening to celebrate the value of associations and their impact on society.

For more information about attending the Summit Awards Dinner, contact Carla Lochiatto, CAE, at 202-626-2807 or

About ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership

ASAE is a membership organization of more than 21,000 association executives and industry partners representing 10,000 organizations. Its members manage leading trade associations, individual membership societies and voluntary organizations across the United States and in nearly 50 countries around the world. With support of the ASAE Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity, ASAE is the premier source of learning, knowledge and future-oriented research for the association and nonprofit profession, and provides resources, education, ideas and advocacy to enhance the power and performance of the association and nonprofit community. For more information about ASAE, visit

Questex LLC and HSMAI’s MEET Announce Educational Partnership with MPI Certificate Courses Offer Meeting Essentials and Healthcare Meeting Education

Questex LLC and HSMAI’s MEET have announced that they have entered into a partnership with Meeting Professionals International (MPI) to offer two certificate courses to attendees of its upcoming MEET National event. The two courses include MPI’s Meeting Essentials2 Fast Track and Healthcare Meeting Compliance Certificate (HMCC) programs.

The 26th annual HSMAI’s MEET National event, to be held September 9-10 at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, DC, is the meeting industry’s preeminent conference and showcases connecting meeting planners with suppliers via one-to-one meetings pre-scheduled by the attendees and sponsor/exhibitors themselves.

The conference’s robust educational program offers clock hours for participants, and through the new partnership with MPI, now includes the following sessions.

Course 1: Meeting Essentials2 Fast Track Program presented by MPI
Part 1 – Tuesday, September 8th – 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM (Pre-conference)
Part 2 – Wednesday, September 9th – 2:15 PM to 4:15 PM
Price: MPI or HSMAI member: $299; Non-member – $399
Clock Hours: 6 total

Meeting Essentials2 is a certificate program designed for meeting and event professionals with three to five years of experience, providing the knowledge they need to understand the business purpose of their roles and also to improve their meetings or meeting portfolios. Attendees in the Fast Track version of the program will dive into the areas of:
• Objective and Metric Setting
• Budget Development
• Meeting Components and Content Design
• Sustainability and CSR

Course 2: HMCC Program presented by MPI
Wednesday, September 9th – 8:15 AM to 12:15 PM
Price: MPI or HSMAI members – $399; Non-member – $499
Clock Hours: 4 total

Endorsed by Saint Louis University, the HMCC course examines the fundamental information on healthcare compliance regulations, laws and techniques for managing healthcare meetings. An effective meeting and business event professional must understand several aspects of conformity of information in order to identify and report the nature and type of payments made to “covered recipients.” In addition, the class examines the interaction between manufacturers of pharmaceuticals, medical device, biologics and medical products, physicians and those who are responsible for planning medical meetings and conferences.

Marilyn McHugh, Questex Hospitality + Travel vice president, global events, said the program will bring a deeper level of education to the attendees of MEET National.

“Last year’s event drew over 1,300 registrants. We are collaborating with MPI to build upon the proven popularity and educational component of MEET National,” she said. “Together, Questex and MPI are delivering valuable education to meeting professionals to help them expand their career goals. And there will be other announcements in the near future on additional partnerships with key industry associations.”

“Since late 2012, MPI and HSMAI have successfully collaborated to offer industry-leading education during our respective conferences and events as well as dual membership,” said Paul Van Deventer, president and CEO of MPI. “We are thrilled to deliver two of our certificate programs at MEET National for the first time.”

MPI is also offering another session titled, “Tactical to Strategic — Moving from Manager to Director,” during MEET National. For more information on MPI’s Meeting Essentials and HMCC programs, visit

To register for MEET National, visit:

About Questex Hospitality + Travel

The Questex Hospitality + Travel Group of Questex LLC serves the worldwide hospitality, travel and related industries that together contribute over $6 trillion to the global gross domestic product. Through an innovative platform of targeted solutions, the group serves the sector’s entire ecosystem, from tourism and hotel development and investment to hotel design, purchasing, management and operations.

The Questex Hospitality + Travel Group serves every B2B segment of the industry, from investment and development to management operations, sales and marketing of hospitality and travel products to destination development and marketing, via proven demand generation, learning, loyalty and rewards solutions as well as a network of live events. This division of Questex is aligned around three broad market segments – hospitality, travel and meetings – and supported by its digital media staff.

Additional information is available at

About MPI

Meeting Professionals International (MPI) is the largest and most vibrant global meeting and event industry association. The organization provides innovative and relevant education, networking opportunities and business exchanges, and acts as a prominent voice for the promotion and growth of the industry. MPI membership is comprised of approximately 18,500 members belonging to more than 80 chapters and clubs in 22 countries. For additional information or to join, visit


The Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) is committed to growing business for hotels and their partners and is the industry’s leading advocate for intelligent, sustainable hotel revenue growth. The association provides hotel professionals and their partners with tools, insights and expertise to fuel sales, inspire marketing and optimize revenue through programs such as HSMAI’s MEET, Adrian Awards and Revenue Optimization Conference. HSMAI is an individual membership organization comprising more than 7,000 members worldwide with 40 chapters in the Americas Region. Connect with HSMAI at,, and

World Famous Laugh Factory Opens at Silver Legacy

Laugh Factory to open Reno comedy venue on July 24

RENO, NV – As Silver Legacy Resort Casino gets ready to celebrate its 20th birthday, a new addition to Downtown Reno’s tallest casino will help light the candles on the cake: the world-famous Laugh Factory will open its doors inside the Silver Legacy on July 24. Recognized by USA Today as “The No. 1 Comedy Club in the Country,” comedy’s top stars, as well as today’s brightest emerging talent, shine on Laugh Factory’s legendary stage. Founded by comedy pioneer Jamie Masada over 35 years ago, the Laugh Factory will make its debut with Jamie Kennedy, the first of many headlining performers taking the stage.

“Laugh Factory is the greatest brand in comedy, and we are thrilled to partner with them and present their first class comedians to our valued guests,” said Glenn Carano, General Manager of Silver Legacy. “Having this outstanding comedy club will truly top off our ‘Go Big’ mantra and add to the tremendous entertainment venue that our Resort Casino has become.”

The first wave of comedians at the Reno Laugh Factory include:

Jamie Kennedy
Dom Irrera
Louie Anderson
Jon Lovitz
Rich Hall
Theo Von
Adam Ray

“Everybody knows that Reno is the Biggest Little City in the World, and Laugh Factory is coming to town with the mission of making Reno the Happiest Little City in the World.  To achieve this righteous goal, we will be bringing the funniest comedians to town,” said Jamie Masada, Laugh Factory founder and owner.

In addition to Irrera and Anderson, Laugh Factory is already in the process of scheduling other legendary talents to perform in front of the great audiences of Reno.

For the full lineup of comedic performances, visit

Tickets will start at $19.95 and can be purchased at or by calling 775-325-7401. Laugh Factory will be open Tuesday through Sunday, with performances starting at 7:30 p.m. and additional late shows on Friday and Saturday 9:30 p.m. Comedy fans can look forward to headlining performers each week.

About The Laugh Factory

Since opening the doors to its original location over 35 years ago, The Laugh Factory has become known for launching some of the hottest stand-up comedians in the world, including: Tim Allen, Louie Anderson, Roseanne Barr, Drew Carey, George Carlin, Jim Carrey, Dave Chappelle, Dane Cook, Rodney Dangerfield, Ellen DeGeneres, Sam Kinison, Martin Lawrence, Jay Leno, David Letterman, George Lopez, Howie Mandel, Carlos Mencia, Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor, Chris Rock, Bob Saget, Adam Sandler, Jerry Seinfeld, Garry Shandling, Sarah Silverman, Wanda Sykes, Chris Tucker, Damon Wayans, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Robin Williams and many more.

Laugh Factory’s mission is to spread laughter throughout the world through its clubs and website and spread the concept of sharing and giving back through its philanthropic activities.  With locations in Hollywood, Long Beach, Las Vegas, Chicago, Coronado Island, and now Reno, The Laugh Factory is known around the world as the premiere spots for comedy.

About Silver Legacy

Located in the heart of the biggest little city, Silver Legacy Resort Casino is a premier destination, boasting the perfect amenities for any getaway. Official headquarters of the #Renossance, the resort casino features spacious guest rooms and suites, big-name entertainment, award-winning restaurants and the best darn outdoor and special events in the west. Enjoy world-class skiing, kayaking on the Truckee River and all things outdoors along with the only accredited museum in Nevada and arts & culture scene with international acclaim. Silver Legacy makes it easy and affordable to experience the best year round! To stay up-to-date with Silver Legacy Resort Casino, visit us at or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Prague saw over half a million MICE travelers in 2014


September is most popular month for conventions, medicine most popular topic

Tourism in Prague has boomed since the early 2000s. With its beautiful churches, interesting history and culture, and unique architecture the city has rightfully earned a spot in the Top 10 most attractive travel destinations worldwide, according to TripAdvisor.

In 2014 alone, 6,096,015 people came to discover what the city has to offer. Some 87.2 percent were from abroad, and 12.8 percent were from the Czech Republic. Germany, Russia and the United States were the main sources of tourists, with the biggest increases coming from Germany, China, South Korea and the United States.

Prague has also experienced an increase in congress tourism, otherwise known as MICE tourism (meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions), over the past decade. Just last year, Prague hosted 3,667 conferences with 545,000 participants, according to the Czech Statistical Office (ČSÚ).

The city ranked as the ninth-most attractive congress destination in Europe and 11th worldwide, according to the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). This association ranks cities according to the number of meetings organized on a regular basis that rotate between at least three countries and are attended by at least 50 delegates. Prague had 121 such meetings. The average number of participants in the events was 428, and the average duration was 3.5 days.

The most popular month with convention organizers in Prague is September, while the most popular month for tourists in general is August.

The most frequent areas of conventions were medicine (25 percent), science (12.8 percent), technology (12.8 percent), industry (7.8 percent) and education (7.8 percent).

Owing to that success, the Prague Convention Bureau and Prague City Tourism are now working together to further promote Prague as a congress tourism destination. Congress tourism provides a significant amount of economic stimulation for those cities that host these events.

According to the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), on average, participants in these meetings spend three times more money than regular tourists. Because of this profitability incentive, the expansion of MICE tourism has become a priority for Prague City Tourism and the Prague Convention Bureau as they work to develop campaigns in support of convention tourism. The long-term goal of these projects is to secure Prague as the fifth-best destination for MICE events by 2020.

Prague is well-equipped to support MICE events due to its “central geographic location, traffic infrastructure, attractive cultural heritage, reasonable prices for services and goods, and a wide variety of hotel and presentation facilities, from historical to modern ones,” said Nora Dolanská, director of Prague City Tourism.

Congress tourism will improve Prague’s reputation as an appealing travel destination, stimulate job growth and delegate money toward further infrastructural improvements. MICE tourism is becoming increasingly important to Prague’s business economy, and its growth will continue to be a priority for the Convention Bureau and Tourism Board as they cooperate in their efforts to host these events.

Record Attendance at ASAE Marketing, Membership & Communications Conference


WASHINGTON—With more than 1,000 attendees and more than 60 exhibiting companies, the 2015 Marketing, Membership, & Communications Conference (MMCC), June 1—2, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, recorded the highest number of participants in its history.

With 28 learning labs, two general sessions, and a sold out exhibit hall, participants discovered new ideas, case studies, and strategies they can take back to their associations. The learning labs focused on four areas: engagement, operations, strategy, and trends.

For the Opening General Session, Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs, shared her formula for innovative content and explained how attendees could apply it to their organization. She offered tips on how to create content that matters to your association including: a documented content strategy, audience focused, useful content, using social media for storytelling, unique tone of voice, and strong writing.

Sekou Andrews, the world’s leading Poetic Voice, was the Closing General Speaker, who taught attendees how to use creative approaches in telling a great story. He advised participants to find great stories with your members and colleagues and to create a culture of engagement. He also stressed the importance of finding out what you do differently and communicating it, putting purpose and people first, letting go of all you know as well as accepting and expecting disruptions.

On June 2, ASAE announced the Gold Circle Award for Overall Excellence winner is the International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostasis for their World Thrombosis Day: Elevating the Global Conversation on Blood Clots. Here’s a full list of all the 2015 Gold Circle Awards winners.

A special thank you to our strategic partners Abila, Aptify, and Personify for their support of the conference. For more information about the MMCC conference, please visit

About ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership

ASAE is a membership organization of more than 21,000 association executives and industry partners representing 10,000 organizations. Its members manage leading trade associations, individual membership societies and voluntary organizations across the United States and in nearly 50 countries around the world. With support of the ASAE Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity, ASAE is the premier source of learning, knowledge and future-oriented research for the association and nonprofit profession, and provides resources, education, ideas and advocacy to enhance the power and performance of the association and nonprofit community. For more information about ASAE, visit

More Work, More Pay: Meeting Professionals’ Salaries Continue To Rise

According to PCMA Convene’s 2015 Annual Salary Survey, nearly 80 percent of meeting professionals have earned a significant pay raise — an average increase of 7 percent — within the last year.

This month, PCMA Convene magazine published the results of its annual Salary Survey, which has served as an industry benchmark for several decades. The results of this year’s survey — completed by 340 association, corporate, and independent meeting professionals in March — reveal that their average salary is nearly $81,000, compared to under $76,000 in last year’s survey.

“Meeting professionals told us that they earned higher increases in this year’s survey than in last year’s survey,” said Convene Editor in Chief Michelle Russell. “Only 3 percent said that their salaries decreased within the last year.”

This year’s results proved once again that it pays to earn a CMP: Those with the designation earned on average $85,793 — more than $10,500 a year more than their counterparts without a CMP.

“In addition to our standard survey questions,” Russell said, “this year, we asked planners what factors go into determining their compensation, such as number of meetings they plan, size or scale of their largest meeting, the number of staff who report to them, and post-meeting metrics. Not surprisingly, nearly 40 percent of them said their salary was based in part on the number of meetings they plan each year.”

And while meeting professionals may be bringing home a bigger paycheck, it doesn’t come easy. The majority of them said that they have had additional responsibilities added to their job description this year. They also work long hours: The average workweek for all respondents is 46 hours, with nearly a quarter logging in more than 50 hours per week.

Full salary results are available here.

About PCMA
PCMA is the multi-channel professional resource and premier educator for leaders in the meetings, conventions, events and trade show industries. PCMA provides their 6,700+ members with a community of likeminded colleagues, innovative education and creative global solutions to enhance both their professional development and their organization’s face-to-face and virtual connections. Headquartered in Chicago, PCMA has 17 chapters throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico with members in more than 35 countries. For additional information, please visit the PCMA Web site at

ACC Liverpool welcomes Three Queens


All eyes were on Liverpool’s waterfront for the Three Queens shipping spectacular yesterday to celebrate 175 years of Cunard.

The Three Cunard Queens – Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria – met for the very first time on the River Mersey, sailing in formation past Exhibition Centre Liverpool, making maritime history.

Big things are happening on Liverpool’s waterfront and with just 100 days until we open Exhibition Centre Liverpool, now is the time to get in touch and find out how you can have a space of your own in a city you’ll love.

Malaysia & KL Move Up in ICCA Ranking

KL Convention Centre hosted 51% of total delegates attending meetings in KL

Malaysia improved her position in the ICCA (International Convention & Conference Association) Global Ranking 2014 (ICCA Report 2014), jumping five places to 30th out of 115 countries. The country also reaffirmed her credentials in the Asia-Pacific and Middle East region with a seventh placing, up two positions from the previous year.

Applauding Malaysia and Kuala Lumpur’s improved performance, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre’s (the Centre) General Manager, Alan Pryor said this showed that Malaysia’s hard work in attracting high-level international meetings is gaining traction and “we commend Tourism Malaysia and the Malaysia Convention and Exhibition Bureau (MyCEB) for their efforts.”

Pryor was also delighted that, of the 79 meetings held in the city, the 14 held at the Centre accounted for 51%, or 24,484, of the 48,341 delegate turnout.

“This is a testament to the Centre’s capability to successfully host large-scale, high-profile events and reinforces our reputation as Malaysia’s premier convention facility and a leading meetings venue in Asia-Pacific.”

Among the events held at the venue last year were the Million Dollar Round Table Experience, GAMA International’s LAMP Asia, Offshore Technology Conference Asia, International Petroleum Technology Conference and three ‘firsts’ for the Centre and Malaysia which were Meetings & Events Australia’s (MEA) National Conference, Toastmasters International’s 83rd Annual International Convention and XXV FIG (International Federation of Surveyors) Congress.

“Moving forward,” continued Pryor, “we look to continuing our collaboration and cooperation with Tourism Malaysia and MyCEB as well as other Team Malaysia partners – Malaysia Airlines (MAS), Malaysia Airports and Kuala Lumpur City Council (DBKL), to attract more international meetings to the city and country and in turn, grow Malaysia’s business tourism footprint globally.”

Since opening in June 2005, the Centre has hosted 10,408 events with over 19.5 million delegates and visitors and in turn, contributed approximately RM5.7 billion in economic impact to Kuala Lumpur city and the country.

The ICCA Report 2014 ranked Kuala Lumpur (KL) the 28th (up two places from 2013) most popular city, out of 400, for international meetings. KL also leapfrogged Asia-Pacific and Middle East counterparts Bangkok, Shanghai and Dubai to improve on her regional city ranking by two positions, to seventh.

ICCA is one of the most prominent organisations in the world of international meetings. It is the only association that comprises a membership representing the main specialists in handling, transporting and accommodating international events, and comprises almost 1,000 member companies and organisations in over 90 countries worldwide. ICCA specialises in the international association meetings sector, offering unrivalled data, communication channels, and business development opportunities.

For all the latest updates on the Centre, visit