The program, in its third year, is supported by Texas’ Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Austin Convention Center and the PCMA Education Foundation. It’s meant to engage the best and brightest young industry professionals by recognizing them as emerging leaders and fostering their talents so they can take the industry into the future.
Members of the 2016 class will be honored Jan. 10-13 at PCMA’s Convening Leaders and Education Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia. (They’ll be so excited they won’t even notice the cold.) The class, in alphabetical order, includes:
- Kalee Barnhardt, CTA, sales manager, Experience Columbus
- Jamie Bruce, CMP, meeting planner, Right Hand Events
- Edward Byers, CHRP, CMP, manager of professional development & events, REALpac
- Shannon DeSouza, MBET
- Michael Doane, marketing manager, CadmiumCD
- Bianca Ferrer, creative director & producer, CoterieSpark
- Jessica Fitting, assistant event manager, Stanford Alumni Association
- Sarah Gould-Stotts, CMP, corporate marketing events manager, Greystar Real Estate Partners
- Juraj Holub, marketing and content manager, sli.do
- Irena Jelenova, membership development executive, ICCA
- Noreen Leahy, conference planner, National Association of Attorneys General
- Victoria Lee, global travel & meeting services, senior associate, Estee Lauder
- Alexander Plaxen, MTA, President, Alex Plaxen Media
- Claire Repass, CMP, communications manager Social Tables
- Lauren Santarone, CMP, senior meeting manager, American Association for Cancer Research
- Peter Simonelli, event services coordinator, Massachusetts Convention Center Authority
- Jenny Stanfield, operations director, Engagement Unlimited
- Havovie Suraliwalla, conference coordinator, SeaCourses Cruises
- Erin Sweeney, national sales associate, Global Experience Specialists
- Julia Yong, senior sales executive for associations, Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau
Applicants must work in the industry full time, be no older than 29 and demonstrate how they are industry leaders. PCMA membership is not required. A committee of “20 in Their Twenties” alumni and industry professionals and members chose the winners from among 70 applicants.
Each receives complimentary registration to the 2016 Convening Leaders conference, funding for travel expenses, discounted registration for Convening Leaders conferences until they turn 30, complimentary PCMA membership in 2016 and discounted membership until they reach age 30. They also can choose to be paired with a PCMA board member, foundation trustee or past leader for three face-to-face or virtual mentoring sessions.