Association CEOs Collaborate to Serve Exhibition Industry

In joint pursuit of better outcomes for conventions, events and exhibitions, the CEOs of five meetings industry associations have agreed to meet regularly each year in order to collaborate on a "broad spectrum of common industry activities," including safety and security, advocacy, education, industry affairs and best practices.

Announced yesterday, the group issued the following statement:

"On behalf of the five organizations and the respective members that they represent, we are very pleased to announce the formation of what will be an effective working team dedicated to advancing the interests of all those who rely upon conventions and exhibitions.

"We believe the convention, exhibition and events industry is poised to take advantage of additional growth and development resulting from the continuing increase in global trade, the advance of new technologies and the heightened awareness of the unique power that face-to-face business communications delivers through events that our members produce, host, participate in and service.

"This is a particularly appropriate time for us to begin a new and exciting era defined by our mutual support and collaboration for and with each other. We are confident that the results of our work together will present those represented with significant new opportunities."

Members of the five-CEO coalition — which will meet for its first official work session in June — are: Larry Arnaudet, executive director of the Exhibition Services & Contractors Association (ESCA); Michael Gehrisch, president and CEO of Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI); Steven Hacker, president of The International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE); Dexter King, president and CEO of the International Association of Venue Managers Inc.; (IAVM) and Lew Shomer, executive director of the Society of Independent Show Organizers (SISO).