Gary Sain to Receive IAEE's Lifetime Achievement Award

The late Gary Sain, president and CEO of Visit Orlando until his untimely death in May, has been named the recipient of its 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award, the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) announced last week.

Presented to individuals who have served in the meeting and events industry for many years, the IAEE Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes one person every year who has changed, during the course of his or her career, the direction of the industry and made a significant impact on how it operates. Sain was chosen for his "considerable contributions and support" of both IAEE and the events industry at large.

"Those who knew Gary Sain understand how his unique and passionate commitment to, and enthusiasm for, our industry have made it a much better place," said IAEE President Steven Hacker. "His contributions have been extraordinary and we are all grateful to have known him."

Sain is one of 12 award winners who will be recognized at the IAEE Annual Networking Luncheon and Awards Presentation, part of Expo! Expo! IAEE's Annual Meeting & Exhibition, taking place Dec. 4-6 in Orlando. Other award recipients are:

Patricia Farias Barlow, CEO of the Puerto Vallarta/International Convention Center and CEO of Farias Global Expos, who will receive the Pinnacle Award (formerly known as the William Hunt Eisenman Award), which recognizes an individual who, over the years, has "furthered IAEE's objectives of advancing exposition management through the promotion of education, the dissemination of knowledge and the introduction or development of innovative techniques, and who has been dedicated to the perpetuation of the highest ideals, trust and professionalism in this highly specialized field."

Jennifer Hoff, general manager of VP International, who will receive the Distinguished Service Award, which is presented to an IAEE member "in recognition of his or her service rendered to IAEE and to the exhibitions and events industry as a whole."

Jeff Mellin, associate director of sales at the Georgia World Congress Center, who will receive the Merit Award, which recognizes "those whose ideas and/or work have benefited IAEE as an organization in some special way" and "have stepped forward at the chapter/local level."

Mark Roysner, ESQ, who will receive the Educator of the Year Award, which honors IAEE members "who possess outstanding creativity, a positive attitude and the ability to transfer knowledge through good communication skills and innovative teaching to promote life-long learning to exhibitions and events industry professionals."

Rob Hamlin, president and CEO of MarketArt, who will receive the Committee/Task Force Volunteer of the Year Award, which honors an individual "who has dedicated his or her time to the progress and fulfillment of the charge of a committee or task force on which he or she serves."

Errol Ahearn, vice president, Executive Administration – Design at Global Experience Specialists (GES), who will receive the Outstanding Achievement in Industry Leadership Award, which recognizes individuals "who have made an extraordinary personal or professional commitment that materially contributes to the advancement of the exhibitions and events industry."

Traci Lee Cook, director of the NAPE Expo, and Michelle Raczynski, event specialist for the PROCESS EXPO 2011, who will receive the Outstanding Achievement in Marketing & Sales Award, which recognizes "outstanding achievements by show management in marketing and sales activities."

Lauren Bauer, national sales manager at Shepard Exposition Services; Kristy Breaux, associate director at the Texas Computer Education Association; and Mary Higham, manager, Exhibits at ASIS International, who will receive the Young Professional of the Year Award, which honors individuals in the exhibitions and events industry 40 years of age or younger.

"The IAEE Awards Committee looks forward to recognizing these outstanding individuals during Expo! Expo!," said 2012 IAEE Awards Committee Chair Lenay Gore. "They embody the hard work and dedication that keeps our industry growing and evolving. They truly exemplify the gold standard of excellence. We encourage members to continue to support the IAEE Awards Program so we may continue to recognize colleagues deserving of these top honors."