Greetings IAEE Midwest Chapter friends! 

Wow! We did it! 

After 18 months of virtual Zoom, Go To Meetings, Teams, and so on we had our first in-person event! On June 2nd it was incredible to go beyond the screen, come off mute, turn off the videos and see so many smiling faces! Encore, Source One Events, The Renaissance Schaumburg and GES, heightened the energy of live events to new levels! One thing is certain, the pandemic did not even slow this industry down! As we discussed, the pandemic accelerated digital technology. The digital badge, will this stick? Will it be enhanced? In our daily lives, we have become more adaptive with digital technology. We now look at restaurant menus on our phones, shop more online and have an app for everything! As this behavior has become second nature, standing in lines at the onsite exhibitor service center is behind us. We discussed how the onsite exhibitor service center has become more digital creating an enhanced and efficient exhibitor experience. We also celebrate the availability of travel, so giddy up to Fort Worth & bring on the Sunshine of Tampa Bay! Also a huge reopen WIN with our very own McCormick Place! Check out these awesome interviews with Choose Chicago & McCormick PlaceVisit Fort Worth, and Visit Tampa Bay from the June 2nd Together Again Event. 

Q3 & Q4 are upon us, and it is obvious that our calendars are much more “richly” scheduled from a year ago! Hang on tight! You are all fearless LEADERS you can do this! Speaking of leaders! We have (3) elite spots available on the IAEE Midwestern Chapter board! If you are seeking to be a part of the fun and contribute to a collaborative group of leaders that continues to mentor each other and push the limits, nominate yourself now!

Lastly, you do not want to miss the fun at our 32nd Annual Golf Outing @ Seven Bridges Golf Club. Sign up now for September 1st! Also, mark your calendars for October 13th! You do not want to miss our Annual Meeting at McCormick Place! Our chapter has a few secrets and some fun things up our sleeves. An event you must attend!

Let us keep our heads up, forge on, work together and continue to conquer the challenges that arise.
Looking forward to seeing everyone in the fall!

Moriah Hathaway, CEM
IAEE Midwestern Chapter Chair
Manager, Exhibit Services, HIMSS

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new” – Socrates

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Call for Board Nominations

Become a Board Member! Help us build the future of the IAEE Midwestern Chapter! The Board Development Committee invites nominations for the Board of Directors with terms beginning January 1, 2022. Please take a few minutes to review the attached document describing the Board member selection criteria and responsibilities, then nominate an outstanding individual for Board service today! The application deadline is August 1, 2021. 

June Education Program 

On June 2nd, for the first time in 18 months, IAEE Midwestern Chapter met IN-PERSON for our June Education Program.  We kicked things off with a Mini Exhibit Showcase featuring McCormick Place, Meet Chicago Northwest, Convention Data Services, Source One Events, Visit Ft. Worth and Visit Tampa Bay.  These vendors showcased what they’ve been up to this past year to help get us back to live events safely. We then moved into our education program with a superstar panel talking through their onsite experiences and solutions as we get back to live events.   

Tricia Barglof, Executive Director, OFFPRICE Division, Tarsus shared her experience and the steps her team took to produce MAGIC back in February at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando.  MAGIC was one of the first in-person events to take place during the pandemic. 

Debra Brendich, Vice President Client Solutions, Freeman talked through the ever-changing CDC and venue guidelines and how that’s impacting both the planning process, as well as budgets. Freeman implemented a digital solution for their Onsite Exhibitor Service Centers, creating a heightened exhibitor experience.

Amanda Gustafson, Account Executive, Convention Data Services discussed what solutions CDS has been working on to create a touchless onsite experience for registration including a Digital Badge that’s already been used at multiple events.    

Chuck Grouzard, Executive Vice President – Exhibition Sales, GES discussed GES’s digital solution for the Onsite Exhibitor Services Center, which allows to Exhibitors to submit requests via chat.  They have successfully launched this solution at 40+ events.  He also talked about what GES is doing to educate show organizers and exhibitors as we get back to in-person events.

Erik Hallberg, Director of Sales, Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel discussed what he’s seen with the few live events they’ve produced as restrictions have eased in Chicago and where he feels the hotel and convention industry stands as things continue to open back up.  

Listening to this spectacular panel, it made you realize – the pandemic may have knocked our industry off it’s feet but it couldn’t keep us down! 

We wrapped up with a beautiful reception on the terrace, compliments of The Renaissance Schaumberg Convention Center Hotel. 

Thanks to everyone who brought a donation for our Chapter Charity, Sarah’s Circle. 

Thank you to our sponsors!

The Renaissance Schaumberg Convention Center Hotel


Meet Chicago Northwest


Source One Events

Convention Data Services

CEM Week 

CEM Week provides participants the only opportunity to take five courses and complete five exams in one week. Along with being able to complete over half of the program in a condensed time frame, previous attendees have said, “The interaction with other classmates is what makes this worthwhile.” Group discussions and class exercises are structured so students actively participate and gain practical knowledge of the course material. Learn more.


IAEE’s Women’s Leadership Forum has been designed to focus on topics that are unique to women in the exhibitions and events industry. It is tailored for all women regardless of age, individual situation or current position held within their company. The forum will provide knowledge and strategies for attendees to succeed in their current positions, as well as motivation and inspiration to take your career to the next level. The Forum will give you the tools and resources while balancing life along the way. Learn more.

Chapter Charity Application

We are currently accepting applications for a 2021 – 2022 Chapter Charity which we will support in the coming years. 100% of funds raised will go directly to support nonprofits in our community. Do you know of an organization that would like to apply? Please send them the application/questionnaire to complete and return.

IAEE MWC Member Spotlight
Alejandra Anderson 

What is the first thing you did as a new IAEE member? Alejandra: I joined a virtual event named “How to Support Every Single Exhibitors & Sponsor Effectively” – I met Robyn Davis at our Exhibitor meeting in Chicago and I really like her content. 

How did you start your career in this industry? Alejandra: I have tons of background in customer service and AEM was looking for a bilingual Exhibitor Engagement Assistant. It was my first time working with live events and I immediately fell in love by helping exhibitors/members to have the best trade show! From there I got hooked on learning even more about tradeshows/live events and now I’m part of AEM’s Operations team. 

What's one new thing you've learned in the last month (either industry-related or other)? Alejandra: I learned a lot of different ways of creating valuable digital events with exceptional content that will even remain in our lives even after a global pandemic. 

Tell us one "fun fact" about yourself. Alejandra: I’m from El Salvador (born and raised).  In 2017 I got married to my Wisconsinite husband, so I moved to the US 4 years ago.  Another “fun” fact is that I was part of the national El Salvador Swimming Team.

What caused you to pursue your IAEE membership, and what do you hope to gain by being a member? Alejandra: AEM provides every employee their IAEE membership as a benefit. I hope to gain more knowledge about events and networking through free webinars and community sharing.

IAEE MWC Golf Outing

Are you ready to Par Tee?  Join us for our 32nd Annual IAEE MWC Golf Outing on September 1st at Seven Bridges Golf Club in Woodridge. Learn more about this year’s participation opportunities. REGISTER NOW!

Connect & Share - July 27th from 1-2pm CST - Virtually Everyone is Doing It! Where Do Live and Virtual Meetings Meet? 

Live meetings are coming back and the industry is rejoicing, but how much of the virtual world do we need to keep around? And for how long?  Join us for a discussion on what works after lock down and how to maximize your event’s engagement. These highly interactive sessions are meant to provide a space for everyone in the industry to learn from each other, so please come ready to teach others about your experiences and to learn from other’s experiences as we adapt to these changes to our industry. Register Here!

Get Ready, We’re Coming Back Strong!

Most cities have lifted their COVID-19 restrictions paving the way for our industry to make a come-back!  Last month, Informa hosted World of Concrete at the Las Vegas Convention Center sparking excitement that tradeshows are in fact, coming back.  Though Las Vegas had lifted all restrictions June 1st, Informa was committed to creating a safe experience for all and kept their protocols in place.  Read more details about World of Concrete here and the hope that we’ll continue to see large tradeshows return throughout the rest of 2021.



Thank you to our Chapter Sponsors!