We involved the entire industry in the nominating process for the 2012 Changemakers: We posted calls for nominations on our Web site and LinkedIn, tweeted about it, and reached out to reader focus groups and our MeetingsNet editors. We also relied on a handpicked advisory board to tell us who they think should make the list and to help narrow down the candidates. Thanks this year to Amy Harris, CMP, SMMC, SunTrust Banks; George Odom, Hewlett-Packard; Carolyn Pund, CMP, CMM, Cisco Systems; Shawna Suckow, Senior Planners Industry Network; and Todd Zint, CMP, CMM, NFP.

The 2012 Changemakers are models of brains, innovation, enthusiasm, and hard work. They have saved their companies millions of dollars in meeting spend (as Cindy Shumate, formerly of Estée Lauder, puts it: “costs they never even knew existed”). They have taken their SMMPs around the globe, working with partners in every region to standardize the meetings process and source more strategically. They have contributed to sustainability by offering virtual and blended options for their internal clients. And they have put attendee security at the forefront, because in this era of homeland security and metal detectors in hotel lobbies, companies need to know where their travelers are (as Procter & Gamble’s Sandro Honigsberg puts it: “It’s the right thing to do.”).

And Now, The Change Summit

The Changemakers are also the inspiration behind a new live event we have planned for Saturday, July 21, in Boston: The Change Summit. To be held at the brand-new Revere hotel on Boston Common the day before the Global Business Travel Association’s annual convention, it will be a closed-door summit for senior meeting managers hosted by our MeetingsNet editors. Topics will be chosen via a pre-meeting questionnaire and will be geared toward attendees’ needs, ranging from SMM issues, to outsourcing, to technology. There is no fee to attend. There are just a few spots remaining; for more information, e-mail me at bscofidio@meetingsnet.com

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