PCMA Announces 2008 Achievement Award Winners

The Chicago-based Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) has announced the winners of its 2008 Achievement Awards, who will be honored for their contributions to the meetings and events industry at the 53rd PCMA Annual Meeting in New Orleans on Jan. 11-14, 2009.

"The winners of the 2008 PCMA Achievement Awards make PCMA the outstanding organization that it is," PCMA President and CEO Deborah Sexton said in a statement. "We're proud to recognize these exceptional members—and meetings industry leaders—through the annual Achievement Awards program."

PCMA will recognize individuals and companies in seven different award categories, including:

• Distinguished Member of the Year Award: PCMA will honor Valerie Sumner, principal of VRS Meetings & Events, who served simultaneously on the PCMA Headquarters Board and as president-elect and president of PCMA's largest local chapter, the Capital Chapter.

• Distinguished Meeting Professional of the Year Award: PCMA will honor Susan Katz, director of corporate events for the True Value Company, who will be recognized for both personal and professional achievements in her community.

• Distinguished Convention Services Manager of the Year Award: PCMA will honor Sharon Dayal, director of event coordination at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC), who has worked at the MTCC since 1989, developing its first-class customer service model.

• Outstanding Service to a Chapter Award: PCMA will honor independent planner Belinda Waldo, who was chosen for her contributions to PCMA's Heartland Chapter, of which she has been president, a board member and a committee member.

• Educator of the Year Award: PCMA will honor Cynthia Vannucci, who spent 25 years in hotel management and is now associate professor and director of meeting and convention administration at the Metropolitan College of Denver.

• Spirit Award: PCMA will honor Carlsbad, Calif.-based Concepts Worldwide, which is being recognized for its charitable contributions, made via its C.A.R.E.S. (Concepts Acting Responsibility for the Environment and Society) program.

• Environmental Leadership Award: PCMA will honor Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, which will receive the organization's newest award for its progressive "greening" efforts.

For more information about PCMA and its Achievement Awards, visit www.pcma.org/awards.