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Letter from the Chair - November 2022

Monday, October 31, 2022

Fall is suddenly upon us, and event season is in high gear for many organizations. It’s been fascinating to see how in-person events are evolving post-covid.

One major driver of change is in how potential attendees make the decision whether or not to attend an in-person event.  Some people are still concerned about contact with groups, others are working from home and don’t want to travel as much unless the event is being held where they can combine vacation with business, while other professionals are eager to meet with their peers and exhibitors face-to-face.

In some markets, reduced staff and budget cuts mean that organizations are sending fewer people than in past years, and in some cases, pulling out from attending at all.

So how do we provide and communicate the value which drives attendance at our events?  What is the role of a digital / online event component moving forward, knowing that it can broaden our audience reach even if we’re not streaming live sessions?

We’ve been having these conversations with our members, and it’s these questions and challenges our members and the industry face every day that drive the education content our chapter provides for you. 

Your IAEE DC chapter strives to be your go-to place for networking with peers, sharing ideas and experiences, and helping you navigate the ever-evolving event marketplace to help you grow your attendance and exhibits, improve engagement, reduce time and costs, and produce other results for your events.  For many, especially our Young Professionals, it’s also an ideal place to grow personally and advance your career.

As this year wraps up, I’m proud of the work the board and our volunteers have done to provide valuable content and new types of events like our Technology Challenge Virtual Series launched this year. We are already gearing up for 2023, and the board looks forward to providing a calendar full of events with in-person and virtual options and content that is important to you, our members. As always, we value your input and ideas, and of course, there are plenty of opportunities to be part of the board and committees and help drive our progress.

There are still several opportunities to learn and network this year, including:

·       We’re looking forward to seeing you at our November luncheon at the Freeman offices in Alexandria as we present the annual State of the Industry, led by IAEE HQ staff.

·       For YPs, Cortney Whitlow will be hosting a volunteer event at A Wider Circle on December 9th.

·       We’re also excited about Expo! Expo! in December and hope that you can attend our Chapter reception at the Omni Louisville Hotel on Tuesday evening.

 Finally, I’d like to take a moment and say how sorry we all are to have lost a colleague and a friend in Phil Saims, who passed away earlier this year.  Phil contributed so much to our board and our industry and he will be sorely missed.  Thank you, Phil!

I hope you all have a great holiday season and a successful end of the year, and we look forward to seeing you soon.

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November 18, 2022

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