Manager, Global Accounts
Membership in MPI:
“...I found that this was an amazing organization that offered me great education, networking with other planners and suppliers and for all of the great opportunities to come.”
Fireworks Marketing Group Inc.
Membership in MPI:
“I have found a place where big-picture conversations about the business of meetings take place on a regular basis, and the ideas we share help to nurture a more professional, better educated, more capable and more ethical industry.”
The Saratoga Hilton
Northeastern New York
Membership in MPI:
“The business relationships and friendships I’ve cultivated are invaluable, and I take a huge amount of pride in mentoring other members in advancing their careers by pursuing their CMP certification.
California Association of Realtors
Membership in MPI:
“I have made many friends and gained considerable experience doing things for the chapter that I don’t do in my regular job. MPI is made up of caring and sharing professionals -- people who may be competitors for one project but partners for another.”
Senior Meeting Architect
Membership in MPI:
“MPI offers great opportunities for education and getting involved in an industry I really enjoy, as well as ways to influence what happens in our industry.”
Sr Meeting Planner
“Being a member has helped me professionally because of the jobs and career growth it’s provided and personally because of the awesome friends I’ve made in the organization.”
ConventionALL Management Inc.
Membership in MPI:
“When I bought my event management company in 2005, the first thing I did was to join MPI to expand my network...That was nearly seven years ago, and I am now in my final year as immediate past president. I now spend my time spreading the word of what a great organization this is and encouraging other meeting professionals to join us.”
Expedia Cruise Ship Centers Independent Planner
“I truly believe that MPI provides a great ROI -- “Return on Involvement”!”
Director of Sales
“Coming from a company that did not provide much education and opportunity for growth, MPI became my learning ground and helped to shape me into a more successful and experienced professional.”
KIM KURK EVENTS (KKE)
Membership in MPI:
“After attending one meeting and having the pleasure of meeting several experienced MPI professionals...I was hooked! ”
Manager, Event-Based Marketing
“Being in MPI has given me the ability to gain experience, build lasting relationships and achieve an advantage in the job market..”
National Convention Sales Manager
St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission
“MPI has truly given me a great foundation for all the success I’ve enjoyed in my career, and I know I would not be where I am today if MPI weren’t a part of my life.”
Senior Account Executive
Just Right! Destination Management
“Every meeting can change the world – just like MPI and the meetings industry have changed my life!”
Director of Sales
Temecula Creek Inn
Membership in MPI:
“...my membership in MPI has allowed me to build lasting relationships that will continue throughout my life on both a personal and professional level.”
Event Marketing Manager
JEF Event Services
Membership in MPI:
“When I am looking for suppliers outside of my home base, I just call on my MPI family to lead me in the right direction. ”
CF Conference & Event Management Services
Membership in MPI:
“I was honored to receive a scholarship grant from the MPI Foundation and have attended Business Leader Summits on behalf of our chapter. I am MPI and I love what we do!”
BCD Meetings & Incentives
Membership in MPI:
“The value that MPI has brought to my personal and professional life is incredible. My volunteer experiences and service on the board have given me the opportunity to get to know and work intimately with others in our industry; to identify and develop skills I didn’t recognize I had; and to grow as a leader in the industry. ”
Owner Plan Ahead Events-Central MA
Plan Ahead Events
Membership in MPI:
“The educational programs offered by MPI are great for potential CMPs, as are the recertification programs every five years for established professionals.”
The Glenmede Trust Co. N.A.
“It’s been a very rewarding experience in many ways!”
“MPI not only introduced me to an amazing network of colleagues, it is where I’ve met some of my closest friends. ”
Membership in MPI:
“MPI has given my business more exposure than any other organization ever has and, more important, it has brought me out of my comfort zone, forcing me to be more outgoing and increasing my confidence level along the way. ”
“I try to give back just as much as I have received.”
“This profession is who I am. I love traveling and learning about different places and cultures. And I love people! I was Miss Congeniality of my varsity cheerleading squad—go Warriors!
Thanks to MPI, I have truly found something that I am passionate about.
If I hadn't become a member, my life would not be the same. I would have never gotten lost in Canada, been evacuated from a smoking airplane, or had the 'opportunity' to hear fellow MPI members karaoke like there was no tomorrow!
I joined MPI as a student member in 2009 while I was attending Madison College in Wisconsin and seeking a degree in Meeting and Event Management. I whole-heartedly believe that it is so important for students to become members of MPI and to take part in the opportunities that MPI has to offer. Because you never know who you could meet along the way and where it will take you!
Since graduating, I continue to be an active member of my chapter by getting more students involved in MPI and by being the 'voice' behind our chapter's Facebook page!
I was so fortunate to have received scholarships to attend three separate Future Leaders Forums that are run jointly by MPI and IMEX. And last summer at WEC, I won the University Challenge at the Future Leaders Forum and became the representative for North America. In May 2011, I competed again at IMEX with competitors throughout the world.
Without MPI, I know that I would not have had these experiences or the opportunity to meet so many amazing people from so many different countries.”
“Thanks to MPI, I have truly found something that I am passionate about!”
Director, Global Meeting Management Services
Meeting Sites Resource
“When I first started in meetings and events, I didn't realize how many opportunities were available nor did I grasp the magnitude of our industry.
I was lucky I had mentors encourage me to get involved with MPI. And I quickly learned the many benefits and resources available.
Most of the successful people in our industry have realized the importance of getting involved as a means of staying current on industry trends and a multitude of issues affecting the future of our industry. Being involved with MPI has opened the door to a wealth of knowledge and ideas by connecting me to these visionaries.
I discovered small and large-commitment opportunities where I could volunteer on a committee that allowed my strengths to shine. I also found opportunities to participate in areas that I had little experience in, so I could develop new skill sets to foster my career growth.
I first got involved in a small capacity as the Student Chair for the MPIOC Chapter. I initially took on a small commitment to avoid being overwhelmed and as an opportunity to get to know the key players and the strategic vision of the association.
Once I became more comfortable, I volunteered in other capacities from serving on the Educational Conference Committee and Monthly Meetings Committee to holding the posts of Director of Recruitment and President.
Volunteering really helped my professional relationships grow immensely. I found that I not only made great business contacts, but also developed many personal relationships as well.
Being involved with my local MPI chapter also provided the forum to learn things that were not part of my day-to-day responsibilities, which really expanded my horizon. MPI offered the tools and resources to help me reach my full potential.
Surrounding yourself with people who have the same passion as you is a powerful motivator. Through the power of collaboration, we can move mountains. I can truly say that MPI has been the cornerstone of many of my successes!”
“My passions are what drew me to the meetings and events industry in the first place.”
“MPI has always been there for me, whether I was serving as a chapter president, volunteering on an international committee, or actually working for MPI when I was in between jobs. Even now, while I’m serving as a Platinum presenter.
The friendships and relationships that I have developed through MPI over the past 14 years have had a great impact on my purpose in life and in guiding my next steps as I continue to reinvent myself!
When I think about MPI, I have several indelible images in my mind: visiting Helsinki to help develop MPI Finland, traveling to Edinburgh to attend PEC, attending the PEC in 2002 right after 9/11 (and how important it was for us to be there), and most recently, through MPI, helping to rebuild New Orleans.
It's what I love about this organization and this profession. It's so enjoyable and challenging and engaging—all at the same time. It allows you to do so much to make people’s lives better.
The question that I continue to ask myself is 'how can I give back?' And MPI always seems to provide me with the answers.”
“I was born and raised within MPI. It's always been there for me.”
Accounts Manager, Meetings, Events & Incentives
“I currently serve as the Director of Conventions & Tourism for an 86 year-old, 2,000-member organization that is the oldest and largest African-American chamber of commerce in the nation.
It's a cause I believe in—and a job I love. I'm responsible for promoting the City of Dallas as a major meeting and leisure destination for minority conventions and tourists.
I've also been a member of MPI for 13 years! Before I joined, I basically had to educate my boss on the value and benefits of my membership in MPI. He asked me more than once, 'What does MPI have to do with meeting diversity?' So after informing him of the MPI Foundation's great work on diversity issues, inviting him to several MPI meetings and events and assuring him of the ROI to the chamber, he agreed that I could join for a 'trial run.'
I'm now 13 years into my 'trial run' with MPI! And since I joined, I've served five years on the Dallas-Fort Worth Board of Directors—including three years on the executive committee. And in international service, I was chosen for two terms on the MPI International Board of Directors and was named a recipient of the Tomorrow's Leader of MPI Award.
I just wish I'd joined MPI sooner. I was in this industry for over two years before I even knew anything about MPI—which was right in my Dallas backyard. But once I found out about it, I was all in!
How do I describe my time as a member of MPI? Joyous. Informative and educational. The people I've met and the experiences that my MPI membership has afforded me have been invaluable to my professional development. MPI helped get me where I am in the meetings industry today.”
“How do I describe my time with MPI?”
“In a previous life I wanted to be a folklore dance instructor.
This story is generally crazy, but believe me, it is true. Just after I got my diploma as a folklore dance instructor, I wanted to establish a folklore and dance ensemble.
Fortunately, at the same time I was earning money as a tour guide and finishing my bachelor's degree in incentive travel at the Academy of Physical Education in Warsaw. During a tour, one of my clients told me that if I was interested in business tourism I should join MPI.
It took a few weeks, but I finally understood what was going on and what MPI was about. When I did, I borrowed a credit card from my mom and became a member!
Later, when I found out about the MPI Foundation, I said to myself, 'Lets try.' And I applied for a grant. Thanks to the MPI Foundation, I got a grant and graduated from PhD studies at the best college in Poland—Warsaw University.
I decided that university life is for me, so I have started working for one of the best private tourism and hospitality universities in Poland. This year, I become vice-rector of this university and I am now responsible for more than 1000 students. I am also the manager of the Poland Convention Bureau. And thanks to the motivation that I got from MPI friends, I earned my CMM and became an accredited trainer of MPI Global Training programs.
From the beginning, MPI members gave me the power to believe that this is a magic industry and it is worth working hard to succeed in it. Now I see the results, and I know that anything is possible!”
“MPI members gave me the power to believe that this is a magical industry.”
“For some reason, no one ever believes me when I tell them I'm kind of shy. Haha, pretty funny for someone who basically meets new people and does presentations for a living, right? But, it's true.
From the moment I sent my first message to my local MPI chapter president, his welcome was so immediate and warm that I felt an instant connection. That set the precedent for my time with MPI.
Thanks to MPI, I have developed some of the dearest, most precious relationships of my life. It’s given me access to world-class educational opportunities and world-class destinations. But mostly, I have had the joy of meeting world-class people.
It truly is the members of MPI that make it so special. And I adore the MPI staff. They listen to their members. And I've seen the organization make some amazing transformations and take some (probably scary) risks based on suggestions and insights from members.
Never have I felt shunned because I was new or younger than most of the leaders. Instead, I was invited to share my opinion at town halls, in my local chapter, via the online community, or on the very public Twitter stream. And if I ever expressed a suggestion or comment, I received a call or email within days (sometimes minutes!) to learn more.
Thanks to the community and support of my MPI tribe, I have been able to face adversity. This community has helped me develop the confidence to let my AVGirl voice be heard. Knowing that I'm helping my fellow Meeps (my affectionate name for my MPI peeps) has empowered me to ask dumb questions about technology and share the answers with our tribe. I love that MPI has always encouraged and supported all of us in developing these lasting relationships.
So, even if you're actually shy like me, don't be afraid to let MPI help shape your story. Reach out one person at a time and discover the energy of this powerful, generous and supportive community.
Maybe someday it will provide the support you need to achieve your goals and dreams. I know, so far, it has been for me.”
“This community has helped me develop the confidence to let my AVGirl voice be heard.”
Meeting and Event Manager
“After college, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do. I had a love for travel and a knack for connecting people and places. Come to find out, there was this entire industry out there for people who love both of those things!
Once I figured that out, it was easy. I started my career at a Dallas-based meeting and event management company. I was in a management training program they offered for recent college graduates—and I've loved my career ever since.
Thanks to the people I worked with and associations I was exposed to during those first few years, I connected with my local MPI chapter, started attending meetings, and made some great contacts.
When I had the opportunity to join an industry association at my next job, I chose MPI because of all the great information that's available to you as a member of MPI. Plus I really wanted to continue the relationships I'd created with the planners and suppliers I'd met. Since then, I've worked as both a corporate planner, as well as on the association side for MPI—and I've stayed involved with my local chapter.
One of my favorite things about my MPI connection is being able to network and share stories with other people in my age group. Being part of a group that's facing the same challenges as me is invaluable.”
“Being part of a group that's facing the same challenges as me is invaluable.”
I was wandering around career night in high school, where I met a woman who planned travel arrangements for other people, and she herself, had traveled the world. I wish I could meet her again today, as neither she nor I knew it that night, but she was one of the most influential people in my entire life. From there I went to college and got a degree in hospitality/travel. I have remained in the travel industry for the entire 25 years of my career.
I worked at many big name corporate travel agencies like American Express in the beginning. In the second half of my career, I was hired to help with a citywide meeting for CEDIA, Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association, and once again, my life was changed. I loved it and decided to pursue meeting and event planning full time.
I joined MPI on my own. I equate the Chicago Chapter to the show Cheers. You are only a stranger once. From that point on, every time I enter an event, I see a friendly face that I know. I was warmly embraced by the MPI community. They encouraged me to get involved on committees, which I did. I joined the Holiday Party Committee as I love to plan parties, and enjoy the team so much, I have remained on the committee for 3 years.
During the years of 2008 and 2009, when tough times hit our industry, it helped so much to stay active with my colleagues in the industry as we all shared in the struggle.
I decided to learn as much as I could and went to every networking and educational event possible. I was fortunate enough to be accepted for a scholarship to WEC Vancouver, where I earned enough credit to apply for my CMP. Being a member of MPI, I am constantly improving myself in my career by using the portals the organization provides.
Without the help and encouragement from MPI and the wonderful folks in the Chicago Chapter, I would not be where I am today. Now I look for ways to give back. I'd love to be a mentor some day to those just graduating or thinking of a career change. Besides volunteering in committees, I've also volunteered to be a greeter at events. It's fun because you get to meet everyone who walks through the door.
"When we meet, we change the world". Enough said.
“When we meet, we change the world”
State Bar of Wisconsin
“I got involved with MPI at just the right time. Being involved in MPI helped me connect the dots and find the career I was meant to have.
I had worked in restaurants and hotels for 20 years before I got into meeting planning. I was looking for a change or an additional challenge but was nervous about starting from square one in a different career.
By chance, I was working for an association management company doing basic data entry and some general office tasks, just to get some computer and office training. Since I was the only one in the office with restaurant or hotel experience, the work on their dinners, trade shows and events became my responsibility.
This is when I was introduced to MPI. It was an exciting time for MPI as they were starting the Meeting and Event Management Associate Degree at Madison College. I decided to enroll, and I finished in the first graduating class for this degree!
Being a part of MPI helped me see that this was an opportunity to apply my 20 years of hospitality experience toward a new career rather than starting over at the beginning of a different career.
My fellow MPI members gave me the opportunities that got me there. During this time, I planned a national conference, a seven-day bike tour, a 20th anniversary event for a regional company and an international economic forum.
Staying involved with MPI has really helped me expand my knowledge and stay on top of every new trend in this industry. The new ideas that come from networking and learning through MPI help to make our events such a huge success.
We are constantly challenged to bring fresh ideas to the 180 events that we put on around our state each year. MPI gives us the tools to meet this challenge.”
“Networking and learning through MPI have helped make our events successful.”
Business Development Manager
Proviso Holding AS
My involvement in the meetings and events industry started in Ulvik, Norway, my hometown, where I held summer jobs as porter, front desk clerk and various other positions at the summer hotels there. That ignited a spark that led me to work my way up in the hotel business, ultimately ending up in the meeting industry.
Not surprisingly, my most memorable moment at an event was at the MPI European Leadership Conference in Paris. We stayed at Le Grand Hotel Opera and, at the Saturday dinner event in the great ballroom, we were treated to an haute couture show by the famed fashion designers, Dolce & Gabbana, where the models walked between the tables. The master himself, was present, and afterward, when dessert was served, it also was designed by D&G.
In 2001, I joined a tour company as team manager for domestic meetings and events in Norway. One of the first things my new boss told me was, “You have to become a member of MPI.” I had never heard of MPI and didn’t know anything about it, but I had no choice -- and I have never regretted it since. During my 10 years in MPI, I have had the pleasure of meeting a lot of exciting and interesting people from whom I have learned a lot. I was even asked to join the board of MPI Norway, holding positions as vice president of membership for three terms and, now, as president. Throughout it all, I have gained a lot of knowledge that has been very useful to me in my daily work.
“One of the first things my new boss told me was, “You have to become a member of MPI.” I had never heard of MPI and didn’t know anything about it, but I had no choice -- and I have never regretted it since.”
Director Malaga Convention Bureau
Malaga Convention Bureau
Membership in MPI:
I wanted to be a part of the meetings and events industry ever since I entered college, in part because my family is in the travel and tourism industry. Since then I have worked in destination management as an hotelier and as an executive for regional tourism and convention bureaus.
The grand opening of a new hotel is always one of the most challenging and complicated activities I have to deal with in my professional capacity -- and the opening of the five-star deluxe Hacienda La Boticaria in Seville in 2003 is a good example that put me in one of the most difficult situations ever. A corporate client reserved 100 bedrooms and all the function space for the hotel’s first day of life -- and 24 hours before their event was to begin, only 25 rooms were ready, the rest were without furniture, we were still building the bathrooms and painting the walls! It was a nightmare, but in the end it was a successful event.
I was introduced to MPI through friends and colleagues in the industry and, once inside, I realized how large and important the organization is, the quality of its members and how much it can offer in the areas of professional growth, educational opportunities and personal relationships. As a result, we decided to bid for the European MPI Congress and invite meeting and event professionals from around the world to Málaga -- and in so doing, to demonstrate that we are a world-class destination for the industry.
“I was introduced to MPI through friends and colleagues in the industry and, once inside, I realized how large and important the organization is, the quality of its members and how much it can offer in the areas of professional growth, educational opportunities and personal relationships.”
Switzerland Convention & Incentive Bureau
My career began in the hospitality industry and, later, in tourism. I very quickly realized that the meeting and event sector is the “the ultimate” within the industry and that I wanted to be part of it.
I have had many fantastic moments in my professional life, but I think the closing of the 2006 MPI European Conference in Davos, Switzerland, when the Swiss host committee was given a standing ovation by the participants, was the most memorable. That was really special for the entire Swiss delegation and me. Of course, there are always some “less than memorable” moments along the way, too. I was once part of a very large Swiss delegation tasked with presenting folkloric entertainment at a small trade show we were trying to start up in Germany some 15 years back -- and not one client visited our booth during the entire three days of the event! Luckily, though, the successful events I’ve enjoyed during my career far outnumber the disappointing ones!
I joined MPI in 1999 at the urging of a colleague and, since then, have participated regularly at MPI events. I have gained a lot of inspiration and know-how from the various educational sessions -- expertise that truly helped my colleagues and me in successfully hosting the Davos gathering and numerous other events.
“I have had many fantastic moments in my professional life, but I think the closing of the 2006 MPI European Conference in Davos, Switzerland, when the Swiss host committee was given a standing ovation by the participants, was the most memorable.”
I joined MPI in 1991, having recently moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area and not knowing a soul in the community. Perhaps like many other members, I did absolutely nothing for about two years. But thankfully, the chapter president didn’t allow new members to sit on the sidelines; she approached me in 1994 with a volunteer opportunity that she said needed my involvement -- and I was officially an “involved MPI chapter member” from then on.
MPI is a great place to learn from the best. That certainly was true for me, because the DFW Chapter provided me the opportunity to be mentored by several well-known and respected professionals in the industry. Becoming active in MPI led me to get involved in government affairs through the Meetings Industry Legislative Action Day (MILAD), serve as a chapter president, chair the international awards committee and enjoy so many other powerful career-development opportunities that I may never have experienced otherwise.
On a personal note, I met my wife, Wendy (also a 20-year member), through MPI -- and in 1991, we became the first husband-wife business team to earn the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) designation! MPI has led me to some phenomenal career highlights: managing three different companies; and, earlier this year, launching a new business venture as well. It’s where I’ve met the most phenomenal friends, learned from the best and been recognized for my own contributions.
MPI is more than my choice for personal and professional development. MPI is my home.
“MPI is a great place to learn from the best.”
Vice President, Client Services
Event Spectrum Inc.
Membership in MPI:
I joined the meetings & events industry -- and MPI -- when working in a related field and my manager asked me to assume responsibility for a national convention six weeks out because our corporate meeting planner required a medical leave of absence. I quickly realized there was a lot more to meeting planning than I ever realized.
After successfully delivering the convention, I was asked to permanently add meetings and conventions to my other responsibilities. When I told my manager I was concerned about knowing almost nothing about event planning, he told me he thought there was a group of people who met regularly because they all did meeting planning as a profession. This was before the ability to find such a group was just a Google search away, so he suggested I call a hotel and ask if they knew anything about such an organization. Luckily, the sales person was familiar with MPI and put in me in touch with the Toronto chapter.
Twenty-one years later, I still find MPI to be the best source for industry-related education and networking with professionals who are more than willing to share their experiences and ideas.
“I still find the Chapter the best source for industry-related education and for networking”
Director, Global Accounts
Membership in MPI:
I joined MPI in my mid-20s, and every time I work on an event and the client thanks me when it’s over serves as a memorable moment for me.
I was a member of the Hotel Sales Management Association when MPI started a chapter in Minnesota. I went as a guest to see what it was all about. I liked what I saw and, after joining, I became involved in committees, then was named to the board of directors and ultimately was elected the chapter’s president.
The journey has changed my life and the memories are profound. I earned my Certified Meeting Professional and Certified Meeting Manager certifications, learned how to think strategically and gained customers and friends. It just doesn’t get any better!
“The journey has changed my life and the memories are profound.”
The Psychic Lady
I was involved for several years in the film, television and entertainment industries as a writer, editor, publisher and performer, hoping that Florida would become Hollywood East. During that period, a Disney talent booking agent set me up as a featured psychic entertainer for corporate events. That connected me to people in the meetings & events organizations. I thought if I was going to establish myself as a leader in what I do, I should associate with those who are engaged, experienced and knowledgeable in the industry.
My first activity as a member of the Greater Orlando Area MPI (GOAMPI) chapter was at a community outreach event in support of a local shelter for abused families. I worked in the kitchen beside other GOAMPI members, none of whom I had had any real communication or connection with prior to that collective bonding. It confirmed that I was in a group that cared and shared.
Though eager to participate in a leadership capacity, I wasn’t sure if coming in as “The Psychic Lady” would merit any favorable recognition, especially among the hotel, destination management and theme park professionals who represented the chapter’s core membership at the time. A colleague who knew of my journalistic career invited me to a communications committee meeting, however, and I left that meeting as the group’s new editor. As a result, I’ve been a chapter leader since 2002, including several years as a board member. The acceptance, respect and encouragement I receive from MPI colleagues -- for what I can do, not for what my job title reflects -- have been especially rewarding.
As the sole proprietor of a small business and a “people person,” my membership also has led to professional and social relationships, gigs, respect from industry peers and, of special importance to me, the opportunity to work with an industry publication, Prevue Magazine. As I have to interview planners and destination management officials for my stories, my MPI involvement has been a door-opener to people who are usually a bit hesitant to speak about their projects otherwise.
“My MPI involvement has been a door-opener.”
Director, Accounts & Global Meeting Mgmt Services
Meeting Sites Resource
I realized I wanted to join the meetings & events industry when I was in college and got involved in planning events for a non-profit organization -- and loved it!
I thrive on sharing, teaching and mentoring our next generation, so the opportunity to speak and present information about our industry at local colleges and universities offers a lot of memorable and rewarding moments for me. I share my story and help students get involved, and I’m proud that 10 new students have joined the MPI Orange County (MPIOC) chapter during the past year as a result of my outreach activities.
I started volunteering in our chapter eight years ago when I entered the industry. I have cultivated new business relationships and significantly enhanced my professional knowledge in the years since. I am now the president of MPIOC and have seen many personal and professional rewards come from my hard work and involvement.
“I am now the president of MPIOC and have seen many personal and professional rewards come from my hard work and involvement.”
Bobrow & Associates
Membership in MPI:
I entered the meetings & events industry through the “back door” after working in related positions, but it wasn’t until I actually acquired enough knowledge to know what I was doing that I truly decided this is where I want to be. It ultimately led to being honored with an MPI Recognizing Industry Success and Excellence (RISE) Award as “2011 Member of the Year,” one of the greatest achievements of my career.
I heard about MPI right after I started working in the industry, but my employer at the time was encouraging me to join other professional organizations. After a couple of years in the industry, though, I went to my first MPI meeting, met some interesting people and joined.
For a couple of years after that, I was pretty much a checkbook member, but then I realized that the connections and friendships I was making were truly worth their weight in gold, prompting me to volunteer at the chapter level. Since then, I’ve never regretted my decision to join MPI and now I proudly volunteer for MPI events at the international level.
“I’ve never regretted my decision to join MPI and now I proudly volunteer for MPI events at the international level.”
Director of Marketing & Development
Urban League of Greater Dallas
“The economic downturn has made this harder than ever. Working for a non-profit, the number of clients we serve has escalated while our resources have declined.
It is the best of times as the Urban League continues to be able to open its doors each day and offer a smile and services to those in need. And it is the worst of times as we realize our most vulnerable citizens are struggling to just take care of the basics.
But life is about challenges, right? And in my job, I can make a huge difference. Like that Jaheim song goes, 'All I know is I had to step up.' MPI has been there to help.
I've been an MPI member for two years now, and the learning experience has been invaluable. I once chaired an MPI luncheon with a $0 budget. Since joining, I've earned my MPI, CMM and CMP certifications.
And it's been paying off. Through our Annual Gala, our corporate sponsors, partners, friends and supporters continue to lend their support to help us meet the challenges that face our communities.
These partnerships are helping me and the Urban League to remain true to our mission of 'Empowering Communities, Changing Lives.'”
“Like the song says, 'All I know is I had to step up' and MPI helped.”
LA Inc. - Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board
I am involved in meetings & events primarily through my job as an account executive for a major hotel chain. But, in November 2007, I was serving as the fundraising director for the MPI Southern California Chapter, and that meant I was in charge of planning and executing its annual fundraiser. That experience gave me the opportunity to walk in a meeting planner’s shoes -- the shoes of my customers. I went on site inspections, made menu selections, booked entertainment, put together a production schedule, decided the set-up and layout of the room, selected linens ... absolutely nothing I do in my day job! I remember arriving at the venue on the night of the event and thinking, “Wow! It actually came together!” It was an amazing experience I will never forget and an opportunity I wouldn’t have been afforded were it not for my MPI membership.
In fact, I got involved in MPI through an industry colleague who was my predecessor as the chapter’s fundraising director and in need of committee members at the time. I jumped in “head first” and have been actively involved ever since -- first as a committee member, then committee chair, later as director, and now as a member of the executive board. I’m currently in a study group and working toward my Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) exams in January. I host “Coffees with MPI” and often talk to students about careers in the meetings industry. My passion for this industry continues to inspire me every day, and I give back in any way I can. I can wholeheartedly say, “I am MPI and I love what we do!”
“My passion for this industry continues to inspire me every day, and I give back in any way I can. I can wholeheartedly say, “I am MPI and I love what we do!””
Director of Sales and Marketing
The Depot Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel
One of my favorite memories from working in the industry is slurping raw crab eggs off the belly of a crab at a restaurant in Shanghai after a huge textile & design show. I was trying to impress my guest -- I don’t know if it worked, but it gave me something to talk about for many years afterward!
MPI has connected me with numerous friends and business contacts -- it is a great organization for building bridges in the industry!
“MPI has connected me with numerous friends and business contacts -- it is a great organization for building bridges in the industry!”
Ambassador Program & Event Services Manager
Meetings & Conventions Calgary
The first time the United Nations judges held their annual congress outside of Europe was at our building in Vancouver, British Columbia. I was the lead and client service coordinator for this event, and it is definitely one of my career highlights. I dealt with the U.N. Governor General and received calls at all hours of the night from security details coming into the country. I even learned how to get two blocks of the City of Vancouver shut down! Most of all, I was able to provide this very important group of people the opportunity to meet in our beautiful city, worry-free.
I am a mother of 9-year-old twins. I have been a member of MPI for four years, including tenures with both the British Columbia and Greater Calgary chapters. I have served and continue to serve in leadership positions for the latter, as a past vice president of finance and, currently, as president-elect. I hold Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) and Certified Meeting Manager (CMM) qualifications and am deeply committed to continuing education. I also am committed to performing and interacting as a consummate professional within a dynamic business landscape each and every day. I am very fortunate to love what I do and work in an industry I truly respect. I am MPI!
“ I am very fortunate to love what I do and work in an industry I truly respect. I am MPI!”
LJS Meeting Strategies, LLC
Of course, you always have to expect the unexpected when you’re working in this industry. I was once working at a meeting for a professional organization, and the installation of its incoming board of directors was scheduled to take place in a mere five hours. All production schedules and scripts had been finalized, the menu and serving plan had been reviewed with the banquet captains, the decor was being put in place … and then i was informed that the governor of California would be in attendance and wanted to give a short presentation. Through great partnership, collaboration and planning, we pulled off this “oh, by the way” moment without a hitch. That’s when I came up with my career credo: “we plan so that we have a foundation on which to change.”
I entered the meetings & events profession when two people took a chance on me and offered me a job as a meeting planner even though I had no experience and no real knowledge of the industry. I did a quick internet search and MPI was the first organization to show up in the results. So, my education as a new planner came from MPI through its institute programs. It was through these programs that i fell in love with the events industry and learned so much more about myself.
Over the years, MPI has supported me …
• When looking for new jobs (via the MPI job board) …
• When seeking continuing education opportunities (with a scholarship for my graduate program) …
• When making connections with some wonderful industry colleagues (many of whom i now call “friend”), and …
• When giving back to my industry (by volunteering at my local chapter).
My life today as a planner, the multitude of memories I have and the stories I share with others are all owed, in part, to MPI. These are the reasons I continue to support this global organization, not only as a member, but also as a volunteer leader helping to guide its future.
“My life today as a planner, the multitude of memories I have and the stories I share with others are all owed, in part, to MPI.”
Senior Convention Services Manager
Paradise Point Resort & Spa
“The learning benefits didn’t come solely from MPI educational programs and events, but from leadership opportunities, building relationships and networking.”
Senior Manager of Meeting Services & Sourcing
Membership in MPI:
“The moment I walked in, however, a member strolled up, started talking to me and invited me to sit with her. Then and there, I decided to become more involved so I could continue to meet and learn from such kind and interesting people”
Meetings and Events Professional
“Most recently, I made a connection with a fellow member who recently earned her Certified Meeting Planner designation, and she is willing to help me achieve mine next year … all from just saying hello and having a brief discussion.”
Chief Inspiration Officer
Membership in MPI:
“When I was in hotel sales, I joined MPI because my boss told me it was required for my job. But I ended up staying in MPI for more than 18 years now because of the “return on involvement” I receive through the connections I’ve developed. ”
Hospitality Industry Speaker & Educator
“...my entire professional career has been shaped by what I have learned and the people I have met through MPI. ”