PCMA Southeast Chapter
September 2012 E-Newsletter

Come L.E.R.N. the Benefits of PCMA Southeast Chapter Membership

Wednesday, September 12

4:30 - 6:30 PM


As one of the leading organizations for meeting and event professionals, discover how the Southeast Chapter delivers superior and innovative education and promotes the value of professional convention management. 

If you are not a current member, see what education, professional resources, and networking opportunities can benefit your specific needs. Or, if you are a current member, reconnect with the benefits that you find most valuable.

Please come join your industry peers at the PCMA Southeast Chapter L.E.R.N. event on September 12, 2012 at the Chatham Hill Winery outside of Raleigh, NC!

1 complimentary planner membership will be given away during the event. (Must be present to win)


 Please register by September 7, 2012.

Sponsored by:

Thank to Our Community Service Volunteers!

On August 9, members of the Southeast Chapter of PCMA volunteered their time to prepare and serve a hot meal to the women and children of the Atlanta Day Shelter.  In addition to serving lunch, members donated an abundance of school supplies and toiletries to the shelter.  Thank you for all the donations!




Save the Date for our next Community Service Project on November 8! 


A special thank you to all those who volunteered:

  • Maureen Brink, Mike Whittington & Associates, Inc.
  • Joe Cano, Georgia World Congress Center
  • Brenda Dempsey, Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Whitney Gafford, JW Marriott Austin
  • Tifanie Haun, Georgia International Convention Center
  • Russell LoPinto, Tech Rentals, Inc.
  • Pamela Shepherd, Distinctive Destinations
  • Kim Maling, InLine Meeting & Site Selections


November Educational Luncheon
Wednesday, November 7
11:30 AM - 1:30 PM


 Join fellow PCMA Southeast Chapter members for our 2012 Annual Meeting with awards and announcement of the 2013 Board Members - among other activities. 


Registration to open soon!  

2013 Convening Leaders Scholarships Available


PCMA Southeast Chapter has three scholarships available for chapter members only to attend 2013 Convening Leaders in Orlando, FL from January 13-16, 2013.  Two registration scholarships; and one Planner Only scholarship that includes airfare, lodging, and conference registration will be awarded.


Click here to obtain the scholarship application.  The deadline to submit applications is October 19, 2012.  The winners will be chosen by the Scholarship Committee - chaired by Immediate Past President Megan Maharry.


Questions?  Contact Megan at  meganmaharry@yahoo.com or (407) 913-1222.


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*Chapter offers two scholarships per year  -  annual meeting registration is paid. 


Your $795 scholarship sponsorship offers you: 

  • Logo and link on chapter website for one year
  • Sponsor ribbon for one year
  • Recognition & Highlighted in one Monthly E-Newsletter
  • Podium Time at Annual Meeting Chapter Reception
  • One complimentary registration to two educational programs
Register for PCMA Global Professionals Conference

The 2012 PCMA Global Professionals Conference (formerly International Summit), is conveniently co-located with IMEX America. This highly anticipated annual global conference brings planners and suppliers together to collaborate on solutions and current challenges when managing their global meetings.  

Planners from PCMA's Global Task Force as well as industry trends have helped us shape this year's content for what is predicted to be the best global meetings think tank.

Topics on the table include:

  • Training your volunteers and staff to understand multiple cultures
  • Country-specific insights on key topics you need
  • Local hotel and venue negotiations
  • Effective delegate marketing for growing attendance
  • Social media tactics and new technology offerings

Registration for planners is now open. Please contact Katie Yandell for registration information at (312) 423-7257.


Dates: October 11-12, 2012

Location: Las Vegas, NV - co-located with IMEX America

Thank You to Our Sponsor - Tech Rentals!


Tech Rentals is a full-service audiovisual rental and staging company.  Since 1985, TR has supported the meetings industry in Atlanta and across the country. TR and Russell LoPinto have been proud sponsors of PCMA Southeast Chapter for the past 10 years. The next time your organization needs the best in audiovisual support, reach out to Russ and the team at Tech Rentals. 

PCMA Southeast Chapter 2012 Board of Directors
Patty Kieffer, CASE
Mobile Bay CVB 
President Elect
Sharon Collins, CMP, SMMC
American Cancer Society 
Brenda Dempsey
Nashville CVB 
Karyl Hanisch
Renaissance Hotels of Mobile 
Immediate Past President/Scholarship Chair
Megan Maharry, CHSP   
Director/Communications Chair
Michele Sawka
Director/Community Service Chair
Kim Maling, CMP, DMCP
InLine Meetings 
Director/Membership Chair
Jennifer Smith Hicks, CASE, CMP 
San Diego CVB 
Director/Programs Chair 
Mike Whittington
Miike Whittington & Associates 
Director/Sponsorship Chair
Sarah Bigorowski
Georgia Pharmacy Association 
Sponsorship Co-Chair
Ali Brown
Eventions of Florida 
Director/Volunteer Chair
Susan Rawlins, CMP Emeritus
Join the Southeast Chapter in Social Networking!



Join a discussion; meet industry colleagues; and reconnect with new and old PCMA friends!

(Click on the logos to be directed to the PCMA Southeast Chapter pages)
Call for PCMA Southeast Chapter Board Nominations

PCMA Southeast Chapter 2013 Board of Directors nominations are now open.


Click here for more information on the positions available.


Interested in applying? Submit the application via email to southeast.chapter@pcma.org.


Deadline for nominations is 5:00 PM EST September 14, 2012. 

PCMA Southeast Chapter's Newest Members

  • Ann Shaller, Sales Manager, The Westin Charlotte
  • Chuck Highers, MBA, Director of Events, Plan Ahead Events of the Emerald Coast
  • Joanna Walling, Student, University of Central Florida Rosen School of Hospitality
Call for Volunteers

The biggest benefit of your PCMA membership is the people you meet! Also the more involved you are in the chapter, the more people you get to know in our industry. We all are busy with personal and professional responsibilities, but the extra time and effort given to the Southeast Chapter is rewarding. You will gain valuable experience and develop relationships with wonderful colleagues along the way.


Consider joining one of the many dynamic committees.  For more information on each, visit the Committees/Volunteers page of our Chapter website or contact Director/Volunteer Chair Susan Rawlins at (404) 508-1404 or sarawlins@bellsouth.net.


PCMA Southeast Chapter Member Anniversaries

2 Years

  • Elizabeth Higdon, National Sales Manager, Visit Charlotte
1 Year
  • Amy R. Hanzel, Retail Solutions Providers Association
  • Paula W. Rinaudo, CMP


Become a PCMA Southeast Star!

Be a part of our organization and take advantage of unique marketing and sponsorship opportunities. Being a partner with PCMA Southeast Chapter is one of the best marketing investments, especially if you are looking to target one of the fastest growing areas in the southeast. PCMA is the premier organization for our industry. Contribute to continuing education and business development, the basis of professional growth by supporting the Southeast Chapter.
For more information on PCMA Southeast Chapter sponsorship opportunities, click here or contact Ali Brown, Director/Sponsorship Co-Chair at (813) 600-5763 or ali@eventionsfl.com.