Top executives representing many of the meetings industry's largest professional organizations came together yesterday at PCMA Convening Leaders in Las Vegas to provide details on the recently announced Business Events Industry Week, scheduled for March 23-25 at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md. The week will consist of a number of co-located industry events that will bring together leaders to focus on community, commerce, awards and advocacy, and reinforce the power of business meetings to benefit economies and social good.
The inaugural Business Events Industry Week, first announced in December by the Professional Convention Management Association, Destinations International, and the International Association of Exhibitions and Events, now features a larger number of co-locating partner organizations. Also present at yesterday's press conference were leaders from the Events Industry Council, the American Society of Association Executives, the LGBT Meeting Professionals Association and the U.S. Travel Association.
The developing schedule for the week looks as follows, with co-locating organizations and additional partners soon to add more:
Wednesday, March 23
Destination International's Convention Sales and Services Summit
PCMA leadership meetings
Thursday, March 24
IAEE Women's Leadership Forum
PCMA Foundation Visionary Awards
Friday, March 25
Destination Showcase, which since 2019 has been a joint venture between DI and PCMA
Among the additional events will be a certificate program hosted by the Events Industry Council. "Collaboration and presenting a unified front in support of our workforce is more important than ever," said Amy Calvert, CEO of the EIC. "It's a tremendous opportunity to take some time to reflect as a group in person on the things that we've learned and the things that we know we need to hone in on as we continue to work to advance the industry. Soon we'll be announcing a little bit more about the programming, but right now our focus will hone in on sustainability and of course the work we're doing from an advocacy and research perspective."
The EIC also will be working to further awareness of its Equity Acceleration Plan. "If there is anything more important than doing our service and driving change through a focus on equity, I'm not sure what it is," said Calvert. "If we are to really drive and inspire our current workforce, and welcome new people into our workforce, we have to prioritize this conversation around equity."
Michelle Mason, president and CEO of ASAE, and David Jefferys, executive director of the LGBT MPA, expressed their enthusiasm as co-locating partner organizations, and noted that more details of their participation would be forthcoming.
"One of the many good things that have happened because of Covid is that our industry has united," said PCMA president and CEO Sherrif Karamat, "and allowed us to create opportunities like this, which we might never have done in the past. I am so looking forward to next March. I think over the week we should have close to 5,000 people in total for these programs. And this is just our start; we hope it's going to be a lot bigger in the future. Rome wasn't built in one day and we're just going to get it kicked off the right way."