February 23, 2018
Northstar Meetings Group, publisher of Meetings & Conventions, Successful Meetings and Incentive, today announced its exclusive new conference, Women in Leadership Meetings + Incentives (WILMI). The event will take place May 4-6 aboard Norwegian Cruise Line's new ship, Norwegian Bliss. Norwegian Cruise Line is also the launch partner of this premier meeting-at-sea conference.
At the inaugural WILMI, leading female meeting and incentive executives will come together to network, engage each other in dialogue on their present and future challenges and opportunities, and plan and do business together. The event is an invitation-only conference for executive-level women in the meetings and incentives industry-by women, for women.

"Women play an overwhelmingly powerful, influential role in the meetings and incentives industry, so the launch of WILMI is the perfect addition to the Northstar portfolio of hosted-buyer events," said Lori Cioffi, senior vice president and chief content director for Northstar Meetings Group. "We're thrilled to introduce WILMI this May along with Norwegian Cruise Line. The event will present invaluable business connections, motivating educational sessions and unforgettable experiences to help attendees navigate their way to success."

Danielle Cirami-Gillis, vice president, events and trade shows, Northstar Meetings Group, said, "Northstar is proud to debut this important new initiative with Norwegian Cruise Line, and we're especially delighted that WILMI attendees will be among the first to experience the cruise line's newest ship, Norwegian Bliss, while learning and networking with other female leaders from the meetings and incentives industry."

Katina Athanasiou, vice president of charter and incentive sales, Norwegian Cruise Line, said, "We're proud to partner with Northstar Meetings Group for their inaugural Women in Leadership Meetings + Incentives conference as we celebrate the arrival of our newest ship, Norwegian Bliss, to New York City. We look forward to welcoming aboard these top women in leadership for the engaging agenda set forth, coupled with new and exciting experiences available on Norwegian Bliss."

Norwegian Bliss, Norwegian Cruise Line's 16th ship, has been designed for the ultimate cruising experience. The ship launches in May and will boast many firsts for the global market, including the largest competitive racetrack at sea and an open-air laser-tag course. The ship's exciting new features will join the brand's signature elements of freedom and flexibility that Norwegian is known for across the globe, including a myriad of mouthwatering dining options and a vibrant onboard atmosphere fueled by dynamic intimate spaces and a multitude of bars, lounges and more.

At WILMI 2018, only women from the meetings and incentives industry will be in attendance, and all participating suppliers and event sponsors must appoint female representatives to participate. Of note: Nearly 65 percent of the hospitality workforce in the United States are women, according to WINiT. Also, more than 77 percent of meeting planners are women, per Data USA; and more than 72 percent of travel agents are women, based on Phocuswright research. Women also make more than 70 percent of all travel-buying decisions, according to WINiT.

To learn more about Women in Leadership Meetings + Incentives, visit events.northstarmeetingsgroup.com/WILMI. To sponsor WILMI 2018, contact Shalise DeMott, vice president of sales, at [email protected].