The growth of Meeting Professionals International (MPI) as an international organization was a recurring theme of the fourth annual Professional Education Conference (PEC) in Lyon, France in May. The organization has achieved truly global status, with expansion to 640 European members (expected to rise to 1,000 soon)-55 percent of whom are meeting executives and 45 percent suppliers.

Vito Marzo, CMM, of Centro Internazionale Congressi, Bari, Italy, who is chairman of MPI's all-volunteer European Council, testified to MPI's growing strength in Europe, saying it is "what and where it should be."

MPI's CMM (Certified Meeting Manager) program was launched in Paris in July of last year; so far, 30 professionals have since been certified. The program was developed by MPI and endorsed by the Institut de Management Hotelier International in Paris-a joint venture between the French Grande Ecole ESSEC and Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration.