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Chair's corner

Hello! It’s with great pleasure that I write my first CMP Today article for you, the community that I am proud to represent and serve this year as the new chair of the CMP Governance Commission.

First, let me introduce myself. Recently, I started a new job as the marketing manager for Conventions & Events with Johnson & Johnson Surgical Vision. I’ve been married to my amazing husband, Michael, for 20 years, and we have two adorable dachshunds named Fred and Grace (they’re father and daughter!). When I’m not on an airplane (business or personal travel), you can find me on a yoga mat, jogging on the Beach – Huntington Beach that is – or on a dirt bike.

Sullivan County Catskills
Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Things were a lot different 70 years ago.

The year was 1949, and the events industry was just starting to emerge. That February, four organisations gathered to discuss issues around "group business," and created the Convention Liaison Committee (CLC) as a means to develop a better understanding of the opportunities and challenges involved with group business meetings at hotels.  

What started as a means to streamline processes regarding meeting planning among hotel and trade executives soon became an organisation that represented and trained thousands of people across the world.

On 3 February 2019, the industry will be celebrating 70 years of leadership through the Events Industry Council. While it has been known by many a name, over the past 70 years its mission remained the same: helping businesses and organisations design and host great events, and establishing high quality best practices for people around the world.

Meetings on Island Time
Galveston Island CVB
Mix work and play in Galveston Island, Texas. Ultramodern meeting facilities and exhibition spaces? Yep. Exceptional off-site event venues? Of course. A charming historic district filled with attractions and activities? Definitely. And the bonus that sets Galveston apart—easy access to beautiful stretches of coastline along the Gulf of Mexico.
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Events and programmes

Combining active learning and experiential elements, this programme is designed to enable participants to implement their own sustainable events. Topics will include understanding the business value of sustainability for the events industry; practical solutions for improving your environmental performance in areas such as food and beverage, transportation and supply chain management; and effective methods for achieving corporate social responsibility goals. As part of the programme, the participants will customise a roadmap for their own sustainable event.

Upcoming Dates:

20–22 February 2019 in Bangkok, Thailand

28–30 March 2019 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco

The Events Industry Council thanks the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau, the Premier Development Partner of the SEPC programme.


The IMEX-EIC Innovation in Sustainability Award has been designed to celebrate champions driving sustainability forward through innovation, collaboration and idea sharing. The award recognises the meeting or project owner, and other stakeholders such as the planner, the venue and other key suppliers, rather than individual achievements by a single supplier or event.

For more information about the award, to see past recipients and to apply, please visit our website. Start planning ahead, as applications are due 1 March at 17:00 EST/UTC-5.


Starting off the New Year and planning to incorporate some sustainability into your events but struggling to find ways to include the messaging? We are here to help! Join us for this fun and informative session that explores a plethora of topics related to sustainability and how they relate to international days of celebration.

Our webinar "Celebrating and incorporating global sustainability programmes into your 2019 events" will be on Tuesday 29 January 2019 at 11am EST, and is hosted by Mariela McIlwraith, CMP, CMM, MBA, Director of Industry Advancement, Events Industry Council; and Chance Thompson, Senior Manager, Sustainability and Public Relations, Green Team Committee Chair Person, Vice-Chair of Events Industry Council Sustainability Committee.

Destination Irvine
Cobo Center
How ALA Automated Logistics Management for Their Annual Conference
ALA, along with other major organizations like ADA, WVC, MLA, and AAAnthro, have been in the process of Beta Testing the Logistics Module for the past year and a half so that it is ready for use by all meeting organizers in 2019. One organization calculated over 40 hours of labor saved after using the system
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Out with the old, in with the new.

There’s no better time than the New Year to think about how you’re planning your events. Trends come and go each year, but are they really something you should keep adopting? Are there different things you should start incorporating into your business?

We spoke with some thought leaders in the events industry to get their take on trends that should go away and trends they hope flourish in 2019.

CMPs in the news

PCMA announced its 2019 Visionary Awards honourees and finalists, of which 11 are CMPs. The Visionary Awards will be held on May 7 in Washington D.C., and recognises the amazing work of those in the business events industry. Three CMPs are being inducted as Lifetime Achievement Honourees, including:

  • Eduardo Chaillo, CMP, CMM, CASE for the 2019 Supplier Honouree
  • Lauren Kramer, CMP, CAE, MTA as the 2019 Educator Honouree
  • Chris Wehking, CMP, as the 2019 Business Event Strategist Honouree
To see a complete list of those being recognised, visit PCMA’s website.
USA TODAY recently published an insert looking at the future of business and tech, and included event planners as an important and growing industry. Produced by the International Live Events Association and Mediaplanet, the campaign "Meetings & Events" highlights expert insights along with destination suggestions and technology solutions.

CMP programme news

Didn’t make it to CMP Conclave last year? Not to worry – many sessions were recorded during CMP Conclave and are available through the Event Industry Council's On-Demand Learning Center.

You can review best practices from leading experts in your field and continue your professional development year-round. Recorded sessions provide an excellent information recap and make great training. Even better, all the recordings are available to you for free if you were an attendee at the live event!

After you watch a session, Events Industry Council will upload confirmation of your additional CE credits to your account within 14 business days.

Lessons in leadership

For the past 10 years, Karen Kotowski, CMP, CAE, has been at the helm of the Events Industry Council. In January 2019, Kotowski announced her departure from the organisation. During her tenure, there has been growth of the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) programme, rebranding of the organisation and completion of three studies reviewing the Economic Significance of Meetings in the U.S. as well as the first Global Economic Significance Study.

We sat down with Kotowski to discuss her years at Events Industry Council and some of her incredible accomplishments.

Industry news
The Events Industry Council (EIC) is kicking off a worldwide search for its next Chief Executive Officer to lead this organisation that serves the global events industry. In 2017, business events generated more than $2.5 trillion in sales, 26 million jobs, and contributed $1.5 trillion to GDP. The EIC also manages the Certified Meeting Professional and the Certified Meeting Professional-Healthcare credentials, the preeminent certifications for the industry.

The next CEO should possess a diverse, global perspective to help shape the vision and strategic direction of the EIC. They should have a strong track record of growth, collaboration, and strategy development and implementation. This leader will spearhead efforts to strengthen the value and sustainability of its members, support and enhance the CMP credentials, and provide a vibrant platform to address issues critical to the industry.

The ideal candidate will have a minimum of 10 years’ experience in leadership/management roles, including serving as an executive director, CEO, or the top P&L leader, with a track record of growing an organisation. They should be an inspirational leader with a strong business-sense that has driven highly successful performance. They should have exposure to the global trends, challenges, and opportunities of the industry and be capable of driving an ambitious strategic plan.


Representatives of global events, tourism and sustainability bodies are ushering in the new year with the unprecedented launch of four principles designed to guide and motivate event organisers worldwide to embrace and implement sustainable practices.

This multi-stakeholder group, convened by the Events Industry Council (EIC) through two forums held during IMEX in both Frankfurt and Las Vegas, agreed the focus of sustainable events would be on shared responsibility for implementation and communication, identification of the basic environmental practices and key social considerations and pathways to support thriving economic practices. 

The Principles for Sustainable Events encourage organisations and practitioners to adopt practices that foster collaboration with a simple and powerful message: by working together, event planners and suppliers can support a healthy natural environment, resilient communities and culture, and thriving economies.

On the move

Have you been quoted in an article? Do you have some exciting news to share?

Contact us at and we can share it with the leading individuals and companies involved in the events industry!

©2020, Events Industry Council. All rights reserved.
Published by Naylor Association Solutions in association with the Events Industry Council.



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