Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

March 31 2014

Here’s A Big Reason To Celebrate The Canada East Chapter

By David McMillin

PCMA Canada East Chapter

As vice president of marketing for Freeman Audio Visual Canada, Heidi Welker has plenty of responsibilities that keep her busy. However, she makes sure that she always dedicates time in her schedule to make an impact on the future of the meetings industry.

“I have been in the industry over 30 years and believe in giving back,” Welker says.

In 2013, Welker brought that belief to life, helping the Canada East Chapter raise a whopping $5,500 for PCMA’s Education Foundation. The big initiative that helped support such a big contribution was the first-ever Canadian Innovation Conference. The primary goal was securing sponsorships for elements of the conference, but Welker and the chapter also arranged a Silent Auction. For companies that could not invest sponsorship dollars, the auction presented another opportunity to contribute to the conference. Companies certainly took advantage, too. Ninety percent of those who were asked committed gifts to the cause.

While Welker received the PCMA Chairman’s Award for her efforts, she highlights the hard work of two of her chapter peers, Lina Farrell, account director, US associations, DC Territory, Tourism Toronto, and Kathryn Cesta, account director, Starwood, for their involvement in reaching the goal.

“Lina and Kathryn did an excellent job of pulling this Silent Auction together,” Welker says. “They set a goal and achieved amazing results.”

SEE ALSO: Save The Date For The 2014 Canadian Innovation Conference

Welker says that the members of the Canada East Chapter all value the role that the Education Foundation plays in providing best-in-class learning opportunities and its role in fueling the future of the meetings industry with scholarships.

“We recognize and value the Foundation as the driving force for innovative education, research and making a difference,” Welker says.

It’s no secret that fundraising can feel very challenging, but Welker says the Canada East Chapter sets a goal each year for Foundation fundraising and places a member of the Board in charge of the portfolio. The chapter holds 50/50 drawings, along with donating $5 from each registration for their educational events toward the Foundation fund.

For other local chapters who want to outline a plan to contribute to the Education Foundation, Welker highlights the importance of a set of inspired and focused people at the top.

“It starts with the leadership team,” Welker says. “They have to set a goal, and it has to be measured.”

Looking to show your support for the Education Foundation?

The Education Foundation funds grants, scholarships and research throughout the year. Click here to make a donation and learn more about what the Foundation is doing to fuel the future of meetings.

PCMA Education Foundation

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