Chapter News

Our Hearts Are Broken, Our Lives Changed Forever — A Letter from the President

by: Barbara Stroup, 2017 PCMA Southeast President

(Photo: Reuters/Chris Wattie)

Our Hearts Are Broken, Our Lives Changed Forever

The senseless shooting in Las Vegas has left us stunned and numb. The hospitality industry brings good people together for good causes and for good times. To our wonderful Las Vegas partners and all of the families of the victims – we wish only for you to heal and move forward from this senseless tragedy. May we find guidance in the words of Abraham Lincoln: “With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds.”

This is not a time to point fingers or lay blame but a time to join together. This attack and past attacks should teach us that we must embrace change in how we look at security. We all deserve a secure environment – from our city partners to our organizers, our suppliers and our attendees – a feat which is easier said than provided. One of the sessions being presented November 1st at our Annual Meeting (The Power of Three) will explore security in the meeting place with Deputy Chief Scott Kreher. Additional sessions will touch on the “Future of Learning” and “Human Trafficking – We Must Open Our Eyes”.

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It has been and honor and a pleasure serving each of you this year. The 2017 Board of Directors for the SE Chapter is an amazing group of professionals. I’d like to thank each of and every one of you for making this year another great year!

Volunteers are the backbone of our organization. Time is hard to come by, I get it, but what you get back is immeasurable. I encourage each of you to take an active role by joining a committee that speaks to your interests. Your time commitment can be as little as four hours over the year or as many hours as you can give. You will love the new friendships gained and seeing others’ visions for our industry.

I would like to share a special thank you to all of our Chapter Past Presidents who participated in one or both of our round table sessions. Our Past Presidents offer guidance to both our programs committee and our sponsorship committee.

Thank you Mike Whittington, Immediate Past President, for your further development of our Orlando Programs. I also thank you for you taking time to be my mentor this year and always being available!

Terry Dougherty, President Elect, your launching of the GMID multiple association event was amazing. I know that you will be a strong President with a clear vision and special attention to detail.

Charlene Lopez, Secretary/Treasurer, your eagle eye on the budget and your mentoring of the programs committee was astounding!

Serving her third year and breaking every fundraising and sponsorship record for the Chapter, Kathy Sullivan, Director of Sponsorship — THANK YOU!

Chris Colbert, Director of Membership, you have taught us all how to better run our committees. Your committee’s offering of key sessions on “How to Make the Best of Your Membership” has helped create very engaged members.

Angela Gennari, our inspiring Director of Communications! Your never-ending encouragement for us to hashtag it and keep up with social media is key in our communication-driven society! Your photos are beautiful!

Kevin Belanger, so wonderful to have you back on the board! It is not easy to keep our volunteer roster primed but Kevin worked endlessly to do so as our Volunteers Director.

Samantha Cribari-Starr, Director of Community Service, what a breath of fresh air! Your committee leadership and new ideas have been terrific. The Yappy Hours kick off was purrfect and we look forward to more great opportunities for our membership to serve you and your committee.

Anna Williams, Director of Programs, education is key to PCMA and you knocked it out of the park! Under your direction, the Programs Committee delivered great content and atmosphere for each of our quarterly meetings and our fundraisers.

Lisa Gardner, Chapter Administrator, where would we be without you? Lisa keeps us in line, out of trouble and on time. This is not an easy job but Lisa make it look effortless. Thank you Lisa!

Lisa Kraus GardnerOur Hearts Are Broken, Our Lives Changed Forever — A Letter from the President