In 1993 - Marriott officially created a new company, Marriott International, focused on lodging and hospitality. That’s the same year Ellen Vandelune joined the Greater Midwest Chapter of the Professional Convention Management Association (GMC-PCMA), and also the same year the chapter began.
Twenty years later Ellen is a Global Account Executive with Marriott International. Here, she reflects on the value of her membership with the GMC-PCMA.
• Do you remember why you first joined PCMA? I was looking to go to the annual meeting in Anaheim (the first time it was in Anaheim..long, long ago….) and needed to join in order to attend….Little did I know what that membership would mean for me! While I had expected to meet customers and colleagues, never did I fathom that the education and relationships would help shape my career and help build my business acumen.
• What has your PCMA membership and participation done for you and your career? Participation is the key….by being involved both with the Annual meeting and at the local GMC PCMA level (working on committees, as well as on the Board), I have gained an incredible insight into so many different facets of our Industry…And how each facet of our Industry, whether from the supplier side (with hotels, cvb’s, vendors, etc.) or the Association side, (with Trade Associations, Professional Societies, Philanthropic Associations, etc.)there is a constant state of growth, change and challenges. With the relationships formed through this participation, combined with the knowledge and awareness just mentioned, PCMA has enabled me to not only be cognizant of the critical issues that my customers and colleagues face, but to learn from each other and be a better partner.
• What would you tell someone who is considering joining and participating in PCMA? PCMA offers the forum and the opportunity to succeed! Whether you are looking to build new relationships or stretch yourself “academically” , there are multiple options available. The Education and networking opportunities, if taken full advantage of, will help you grow both personally and professionally!