You have volunteered for many roles with FICP during your years as a member. Looking back over your career, what has FICP meant to you?
Being a member of FICP exploded my industry network! Meeting people from all aspects of the business and all ends of the earth—I may not do business with them today, but you never know about tomorrow. Planners love talking about locations and events with other planners. I was on a plane with a fellow planner and we were catching up on where we’ve been and where we are going. As we were de-planing, a woman behind us said, “What do you two do? It sounds awesome!” And it is, but only fellow planners know the real deal. FICP allows us the platform to share not only information, but our life.

What makes meeting planning the right career for you?
I’m very task-oriented. Love to check off a list! Meeting planning has so many tasks that build upon each other. And the creativity! We get amazing opportunities to dream big and make it happen. And I’m a people-pleaser. The reward at the end of a meeting is to see attendees smile.

What was your first paying job? 
Through high school I worked at a nut and candy store and through college I waitressed. I believe everyone should have to wait on tables. It’s a great way to learn how to treat people with respect, both as the diner and as the server. 

If you could have dinner with one person, living or from history, who would it be? 
Nelson Mandela. I am in awe of the way he lived his life.

What is your favorite weekend activity? 
Playing in the garden: weeding, replanting, pruning, I enjoy it all. In winter? Shopping! And I think I’m also supposed to say how much I enjoy spending time with my family—my husband and three children.

What meeting trend are you most excited about right now?
More electronic meeting materials. Everything is sent electronically. 

What is your best travel tip? 
Just breathe. There is not one good thing that happens when a traveler gets upset about things that are out of their control.

What are you most looking forward to as FICP Chair?
Giving back to FICP for years of honing my planning and leadership knowledge. Working with the board of directors, the hospitality partners, and FICP staff; strengthening the organization and developing future talented individuals to serve as leaders in the industry.