IAEE Honors Industry Leaders Amid Challenging Year

December 22, 2020
IAEE Honors Industry Leaders Amid Challenging Year

As it closed out the industry’s most challenging year in recent memory, The International Association of Exhibitions and Events honored individuals whose innovative ideas and strong work ethic will be counted on for the recovery from COVID-19.

The winners are some of the longest standing event professionals who have contributed far more than the events they have produced. This year’s virtually ceremony aired during Expo! Expo! put a renewed spotlight on Nancy Walsh, who accepted the Women of Achievement Award again, three months after first being presented the prize at IAEE’s Women’s Leadership Forum.

Since joining Informa in January 2020, where she serves as president of fashion, Walsh has developed an ongoing education series with fashion, financial and lobbying experts to help support struggling brands and retailers during the pandemic, an incubator program called Fashion for Change which provides booth space and mentorship for up-and-coming black designers, and a first-of-its-kind, multi-category digital fashion tradeshow.

“Nancy’s career has been an outstanding exercise in professionalism, dedication and accomplishment that deserves recognition on many levels,” said IAEE Awards Committee Chairperson Kellie Shevlin, CEM, Executive Director, Craft Beverage Expo. “She acts as a role model for future female leaders of our industry to emulate.”

Prior to joining Informa, Walsh has held positions over her 32-year career as president of North America operations for Reed Exhibitions and senior vice president at Freeman. At Informa, Walsh oversees fashion trade shows including Magic, Coterie, Project and Project Women’s. 

Over the course of my career, I have had the great pleasure and opportunity to work alongside brilliant leaders, both women and men, as well as lead many incredible teams, driven by innovation and inspired by the creativity that teamwork can spark,” she said. “By approaching each day and each project with wholehearted dedication, open-mindedness and collaboration, anything is possible.”

The IAEE Awards recognize association members who have demonstrated a commitment to the industry through impeccable leadership and noteworthy contributions. They were presented during the first-ever digital Expo! Expo! In December.

The other winners include:

·  Rick McConnell, president of Informa Markets Limited received the Pinnacle Award winner. McConnell is credited with employing and mentoring thousands of event professionals during his 30-year career, in which he has worked on nearly 300 events.

·  Rick Simon, CEO and president of United Service Companies received the Distinguished Service Award. “When representing IAEE, the honoree will have served as a role model for the industry,” notes the qualification descriptions.

·  The National Business Aviation Association won the International Excellence Award.

·  Mark Zimmerman, CEO of Zimmerman Consulting LLC, was recognized with the Humanitarian Award, given to a member “who demonstrates commitment to equality and social responsibility and exemplifies unselfish giving to the well-being of humanity through aiding those less fortunate and eliminating/reducing the pain and suffering of others.

·  Deb Ferbrache, CEM; Chris Pendley, director of data and digital services, Messe Frankfurt North America; Kareem Salvant, event logistics and facilities support manager, The Javits Center; and Landon Shores, senior business development Manager, Freeman won Chapter Merit Awards

·  Troy Love, CTA, CMP, CASE, CEM, senior sales manager at Visit San Antonio was presented the Bob Dallmeyer Educator of the Year Award.

·  Shannon Binger, CEM, senior manager of meetings and services at the American Thoracic Society, was Volunteer of the Year.

·  CEO Chuck Elias and 42Chat won the Innovative Business Solution Award.

·  Molly Hamill, CMP, CEM, manager of exhibition sales at International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions, was named Young Professional of the Year.

 

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Partner Voices

As event professionals and destinations adjust, adapt and evolve in these uncharted waters, it is imperative that substantial resources be put in place for all of the people responsible for planning and executing trade shows, expositions and conventions. An example is Mohegan Sun, which built an industry-leading, COVID-19 Resource Center with a combination of pictures from recently held successful events (the property reopened on May 1, 2020) along with several widely available and informative documents, such as an evolving operational framework: