Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

On Your Mark, Reset…Go

August 16, 2022 @ 1:00 pm7:00 pm EDT

More Than Ever, the Importance and Need for Strategic Planning

Lean staff, new leadership, instability of resources – while we are seeing the return of in-person meetings, it comes with these rotating challenges that event professionals are working through. Let’s take the time to reflect, refocus and reset on what trends and solutions we can bring back to our organizations and help the business of events work smarter, not harder.

The August Spark event will open with a keynote on 2022 Event Trends from influencer and industry thought icon, Will Curran, Founder and Chief Event Einstein of Endless Events. From there, let’s dig into those challenges that affect our current landscape – inflation, staffing shortages, new contractual clauses, DEI, sustainability – to raise awareness and better prepare event professionals.

**Special Registration Rate** Bring an Emerging Professional from your office for an additional $10.00. Opt-in on the registration link above.

This event has been approved by the Events Industry Council (EIC) for 4.5 CE credits.


Time Description
12:30 pm – 1:00pm

Registration & Networking

Virtual Sign In (12:45pm)

1:00 pm – 2:30 pm KEYNOTE: 2022 Event Trends

Just like that, we blinked and it’s already half way through the year. You might be asking yourself, what will be shaking up the industry next year? How will the industry evolve? We have some predictions! This year we stepped it up and surveyed hundreds of #Eventprofs to weigh in on the hottest trends for the year. We could list out hundreds of trends but at that point is it even a trend? We don’t think so. Instead, we’re bringing you a curated list of the top event trends for the year. Buckle up, it’s going to be an exciting ride!

Learner Outcomes:

  • Think strategically when it comes to creating your events
  • Walk away with trends to implement into your events right away
  • Learn to think about how to apply existing trends in the world to events

Keynote Speaker: Will Curran, Founder, Endless Events

2:30 pm – 2:40 pm Break
2:40 pm – 3:25 pm Breakout Sessions

Session 1: (Livestream)
“Am I Not Clear?” …breaking down the communication barriers between generations in the workplace

A key part of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, (DEI) an aspect of the many focuses of DEI is generational representation and its widespread impact in our society. JOIN IN on this interactive session where YOU are a part of the content creation! Attendees will create a living agenda and focus on specific topics related to generational DEI and communications you would like to explore in deeper dialogue. Panelists will respond in REAL TIME to your content requests and as this session will be tailored to deliver exactly on the learning objectives in the room!

Learner Outcomes:

  • Why is generational diversity important
  • What does generational diversity mean and what is its organizational impact in the workplace?
  • What are the key characteristics/benefits of generational diversity?
  • What are some best practices for working with various generations and navigating generational differences
  • What are some tools to best communicate across generations


Cara Anderson
Senior Manager of Multicultural Affairs
Marriott International
Colleen Phalen
Chief Creative Office
American Association for Justice
Sophia Hyder Hock
Chief Diversity Office
Destinations International

Session 2: Young Professional Panel
Intergenerational Approach to Advancing your Career

PCMA Capital Chapter has curated a panel to help the hospitality professional, whether you are just beginning your career or are more seasoned, navigate thru the challenges that affect the current landscape, with topics that will cover staffing, labor shortages, and overall customer service.

Below are the topics that we would like the panel to discuss. The panelists will include a college placement or HR recruiter, a young professional, and a senior meeting planner.

  • Identifying potential companies and job opportunities
  • Job productivity and building reputation
  • Developing business acumen


Zoe Roberts
Membership Associate
Destination DC
Vince L. Rodriguez, CMP, DES
Director, Member Meetings & Conferences Education, Training & Events
National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA)
Nicole Belyna, SHRM-SCP
Manager, Talent Acquisition & Inclusion
Society for Human Resource Management
Kim Graves
National Account Director
Travel Portland
Sara Stehle, CAE, CMP

Senior Specialist, Event Logistics
Society for Human Resource Management



3:25 pm – 4:05 pm Capital Connections
During Capital Connections, we will learn about an opportunity to win big by helping the chapter recruit new members, while assembling Snack & Activity Bags for the Ronald McDonald House Charities in WDC. The families spend LONG hours at the hospital and we can help by providing grab and go snacks and activities. Destination Toronto is donating all of the items needed for the bags and you just need a Spirit to Serve.**

4:05 pm – 4:50 pm Breakout Sessions

Session 1: (Livestream)
Creating More Sustainable, Higher-impact Meetings & Events 

Sustainability and ESG are increasingly important concepts for meetings and events. Awareness and expectations on these topics are ever changing, particularly after COVID-19 made planners feel like they were put on the back burner. It’s time to better explore what these terms actually mean, and how we can effectively plan a more sustainable meeting without breaking the budget. This session explores just that, and where you can focus your efforts to have the greatest impact.

  • ESG? Net-zero? Carbon neutral? Carbon positive? Learn the key terminology with regards to sustainability and how it applies to planning a meeting.
  • Explore the growing trends and expectations around sustainability and ESG.
  • Take away practical, cost-effective ideas and actions that you can apply to your own meetings and events to increase the sustainability and social impact.


Laura Gustafson


Session 2: Rethinking How We Measure Event Success

Measuring event success is never far from our minds – the last few years challenged us on this more than ever. While previous KPIs and goals are important strategies to measure success, are you and your organization focused on not only the tangible but also the Emotional Quotient intangibles? What story does your event experience tell? How does this fit into the strategic planning for your event?

Join us for this interactive session on rethinking how to totally measure event success. Exchange ideas with your colleagues on strategies for what’s worked, and what hasn’t, and tips and tricks of additional measurements as we bounce forward. Walk away with new ideas to bring back to your teams and the next event.

Learner Outcomes:

  • Explore ideas for retooling your strategic thinking around how to totally measure event success
  • Learn about the EQ intangibles when measuring event success – and ways these can be measured in the future
  • Walk away with actionable tactics and tips for implementing these new ideas


Brad Weaber
Brad Weaber Consulting Group, LLC


4:50 pm – 5:00 pm Break
5:00 pm – 6:00 pm Labor Shortage: Perspectives and Insights from Suppliers
Travel, tourism and meetings are finally back and at full speed. However despite high demands so many sectors are struggling with inadequate staffing and supply chain disruptions.Our panel of industry professionals will talk about how these challenges are affecting their companies and organizations and what they are doing to offset these shortages.Panelists:

Jenna Shrove
Senior Director, Strategic Advocacy and Advisor to the Chief Policy Officer
LeChez Solanges
Senior Manager Executive Recruiting & Diversity Sourcing
Global Executive Talent Acquisition
Greg Deininger
Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing
Aimbridge Hospitality
Misty Johnson Oratokhai

Chief Administrative Officer
Events DC


6:00 pm – 7:00 pm Closing Reception and Networking

CE Credit: PCMA CC has been approved by the Events Industry Council (EIC) as a Preferred Provider of the below-listed continuing education courses, which qualify for CMP continuing education credit. Determination of continuing education credit eligibility or Preferred Provider status does not imply EIC’s endorsement or assessment of education quality. This event qualifies for 4.5 CE credits.

All Access Passholders: This event is included in your pass. Please contact [email protected] if you have not received your discount code.

COVID-19 Guidelines

The safety and wellbeing of our colleagues is a top priority for the Capital Chapter. We will be implementing the following guidelines:

Registrants for the event must be fully vaccinated or have had a negative PCR or laboratory administered COVID-19 test result within 72 hours of the start of the event. You will be required to show proof of vaccination or the results of your negative test prior to entrance.

  • Attendees are strongly encouraged to wear masks while not actively eating or drinking.
  • Protect yourself by frequent hand washing and minimizing face touching.
  • Do NOT attend if feeling ill or if you have had recent COVID-19 exposure.


Room Block

The Westin Alexandria Old Town is offering a special group rate of $89.00 USD a night for those attending the event. Please book your accommodations using this link.


Martha’s Table was selected as the PCMA Capital Chapter Charity of the Year. Every week 5,000 families turn to Martha’s Table for healthy food – more than double the number of visitors from before the pandemic.
Please bring trail mix, goldfish, and granola bars to ALL of our Capital Chapter events. Your healthy snack donations will help the 200+ neighbors experiencing hunger who rely on Martha’s Table for their meals.  If you’re unable to attend the June Sparkler, please consider a cash donation!


Thank you to our Sponsors!

Annual Educational Partner
Presenting Partner

Event Partner

Venue Partner

Collaborator Partner

Speaker Partner

Photography Partner

Signage Partner

Video Partner


August 16, 2022
1:00 pm– 7:00 pm EDT


Westin Alexandria
400 Courthouse Square
Alexandria, VA 22314 United States
+ Google Map
(703) 253-8600
View Venue Website