“It’s a testament to this organization and to Tampa that with all the doom and gloom about the impact of the economy, we enjoyed the highest turnout in planner attendance in three years,” remarked RCMA Executive Director and CEO Dr. DeWayne Woodring during the state of the association address on the final day of the Religious Conference Management Association 39th World Conference & Expo, January 25–28, Tampa, Fla.
“In a world of so many divisions,” he said, “RCMA brings together those of many different faiths to learn and enjoy fellowship.” He noted that RCMA members now represent 789 different religious organizations.
Visit our photo album of the 2011 RCMA conference here.
Here are some highlights from the Tampa gathering:
- For the sixth consecutive year, the association capped its conference with the announcement of a $100,000 donation to feed the world’s hungry children.
- Sacramento, Calif., was chosen as the location of RCMA’s 2014 World Conference & Expo.
- Daniel Carr, senior national sales manager with GES, received the 2011 President’s Award, announced at the final-night banquet.
- Four new members of RCMA’s board of directors were inducted and began serving a three-year term. The new members are Hugh W. Hill, Awana; Debra K. Mardis, The Salvation Army; Jim Nirmaier, Visit Fort Wayne; and Michelle Penner, Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches.
- Top entertainment at the conference included a private performance of dance, music, and acrobatics at Busch Gardens on Wednesday night. Nine-year-old piano sensation/entertainer Ethan Bortnick won standing ovations from the RCMA audience at the final night banquet, which ended with attendees dancing and singing onstage.