Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

June 2013

AIPAC Policy Conference: A Teachable Meeting

By Christopher Durso, Executive Editor
and directing attendees around the convention center and on Capitol Hill. “It was really interesting to see Precision work with [AIPAC],” Jack said, “because sometimes it can be difficult to work under a company, but they worked really well as a team.” As an event-planning major, Jack was particularly impressed by how AIPAC and its partners transformed Walter E. Washington's cavernous underground exhibit space into AIPAC Village. (See “It Took a Village,” p. 83.) “It looked like an outdoor garden,” Jack said.

And then there was the fact that she was staffing a high-profile conference with a significant lobbying component on Capitol Hill. “For students to be able to go out and not only see Washington, D.C., but be a part of an important issue — we didn't have an opinion on the issue one way or the other,” Jack said, “but to see how many people are really passionate about the cause and what they're working toward.... It was amazing to watch all these people come together and work toward it.”

For Shulman, the student-heavy Precision army was “a game changer. An absolute game changer.” He added: “This conference sets the tone for this organization, for everything we do throughout the year. The success of this conference is critical for our development campaign, for our legislative efforts, for our political activity, and so forth....

“It's important, I think, to create the energy here,” Shulman said. “You can see this place is abuzz right now with the energy off of Vice President Biden's speech this morning, the presence of Defense Minister Barak. Everybody is starting to think about their lobbying efforts tomorrow. But the energy of bringing everybody together under the same roof is what catapults us through the rest of the year.”

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