The Convention Industry Council has announced its newest inductees into the CIC Hall of Leaders. The inductees represent influential leaders who have shaped the industry over a lifetime of accomplishments, whose contributions have left an indelible impression on the industry, and who will be inducted during the 2013 Hall of Leaders Gala October 13, in Las Vegas, prior to the IMEX America tradeshow.

“There is tremendous talent in our industry, and the 2013 class of Hall of Leaders clearly meets the criteria for this award; all have shown remarkable leadership and their prolific work continues to advance the field,” said Karen Kotowski, CAE, CMP, chief executive officer of the CIC.

Nominations were submitted by CIC member organizations or the general meetings community.

One of the nominees, Jorge Castex, honorary member and past president of the International Association of Professional Congress Organizers, which nominated him, is a pioneer in global events. The former founder and president of Congresos Internacionalies S.A. in Argentina, Castex was there at the development of the modern professional congress organizer.

Congresos Internacionales was one of the original PCOs in the 1970s, and Castex also was a founding member of the Argentine Association of Congress & Exhibitions Organizers, a precursor to COCAL, the Latin American Federation of Professional Congress Organizers.

Foreseeing the need for an international network, Castex joined the fledgling founding fathers in the development of IAPCO, serving as its president for two non-consecutive terms. A champion of education, Castex was a driving force behind the IAPCO Training Academy as chair for 10 years, and has dedicated 20 years to lecturing and training for the academy’s national/regional seminars as well as the prestigious Wolfsberg Seminar.

He was appointed Honorary Member of IAPCO in 2010 and has very recently retired. “I was surprised and honored to receive such a nomination,” he said, “This is also a recognition of the efforts done by IAPCO and us during all these past years.”

Jorge Castex is the second member of IAPCO to be inducted into the Hall of Leaders; the first was Roger Tondeur of MCI in 2007.

Castex is not the only inductee who represents the global meetings industry. Eduardo Chaillo, CMP, CMM, nominated by International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), will also be honored as a passionate advocate for the global meetings industry. During his tenure at the Mexico Tourism Board (he left in January to form his own consultancy, Global Meetings and Tourism Specialists), he harnessed that passion to raise the image not only of Mexico but of the meetings industry at large. He has been an international represenative to the Certified Meeting Professional Board of Directors, was instrumental in the development of the North American ICCA chapter and the Professional Convention Management Association's Mexico chapter, and is a founding adviser of the Latin America Association of Convention & Visitors Bureaus. Chaillo was also a key driver of the implementation of an Economic Significance Study of the Mexico meetings industry after seeing Canada and the U.S. benefit from doing theirs.


The other 2013 Hall of Leaders honorees are:

  • Peggy Daidakis, Executive Director, Baltimore Convention Center: Nominated by the Baltimore Convention Center Staff
  • Liz Erikson, Executive Director, Meetings & Incentives, Fairmont-Raffles-Swissotel: Nominated by Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA)
  • Stephen Powell, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales, Intercontinental Hotels Group: Nominated by Meeting Professionals International (MPI)