Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

February 19 2015

Words from our 2014 Award Winners

Jennifer Holt, CMP
The 2014 award recipients were honored at the GMC's annual Awards Luncheon on Feb. 4 at the Hilton Rosemont. Thank you for your dedication and contributions to the Greater Midwest Chapter and meetings industry!

Richard Daignault Award
Douglas Bennett, CASE
Director of Sales, Central Division
Global Experience Specialists

“Winning this award is extra special, having known Dick and what he stood for in this industry and to his clients and his family. What an honor to be compared to him. He was always so generous and giving of his time and experience. If the Chapter had a Mt. Rushmore that represented key chapter founding fathers, Dick’s face would be one represented. So when that is the way I feel about Dick and his incredible legacy, it is especially gratifying and a true honor to be recognized with an award in his name.”

Advantage of being a member of PCMA: Connections to the industry; a professional outlet to network and grow your experience and overall industry success.

Fun fact: “I have attended the Greatest Spectacle in racing, The Indy 500, since 1971 and have only missed one race since (1986). It rained for three straight days and they cancelled the race until the weekend and I had to head back to work in Dallas.”

Robert Donovan Award
Sarah McKinney, CMP
Associate Director of Conference Services
Alzheimer’s Association

Sarah has been an active PCMA member since 2000 and is this year’s Vice Chair of the GMC PCMA Events Committee.

“This is a huge honor to receive this award from my peers in the industry, plus Bob Donovan is so well respected in the industry. To be part of such a distinguished group of people is an incredible honor.”

Advantage of being a member of PCMA: Relationships she has developed, the networking opportunities, education, guidance, and overall the people you meet from around the world.

Fun fact: “When I was 4 years old, I won little Miss Cole County, which is a beauty and talent contest at the county fair.”

Pillar Award
Kris Marinelli Jebson
Director, Global Sales
MGM Resorts International

Kris has been in the hospitality industry since 1998 and has been serving on the Community Services Committee for the past eight years.

“This PCMA Awards Luncheon was one of the biggest highlights of both my personal and professional life so far. It is amazing to think that I was chosen for this prestigious award by my peers. It meant the world to me and every time I think of that day I smile. My award sits proudly on my desk every day to remind me that anything is possible.”

Advantage of being a member of PCMA: The opportunity to be involved with and contribute to the community on a philanthropic level, along with the professional and personal network of friends that she has made.

Fun fact: “I have never had a cavity!”

Broad Shoulders Award
James S. Goodman, CMP
Managing Vice President, Division of Conferences and Continuing Education
American Dental Association

Jim is an active PCMA member, serving the National PCMA Board from 2009-2011, and has assisted the GMC Student Membership Committee.

“The award means the world to me for several reasons. First, I was totally unaware of this award or my consideration for it, which makes it more special. The past recipients are industry legends and heroes, so being included in that list is a true honor and very humbling. Finally, this award is for all those people who helped me along the way and for my current team at the ADA. I have been so lucky to work with such great folks my entire career. Thank you, GMC, for this wonderful recognition.”

Advantage of being a member of PCMA: Being involved with GMC in whatever fashion possible for your situation is a truly rewarding experience.

Fun fact: “I am a die-hard St. Louis Cardinals fan which makes living in ‘Cubville’ so much fun!!”

Outstanding Service to the Chapter Award
Jill Formeister
Independent Meeting Planner / Project Manager

Jill has been a PCMA member since 1992 and serves as the Chair of the Communications Committee.

“I'm truly honored that my peers have recognized my contributions. Serving on the Communications Committee is a wonderful opportunity to work with other members and help our chapter grow. I am fortunate to be included among the amazing 2014 award winners and look forward to continuing to support our chapter.”

Advantage of being a member of PCMA: The connections we develop and the opportunities to learn and grow

Fun fact: “For some years, I shareboarded a horse named Scotty and rode several times a week.”

GEM Award
Andrea Carlson, CMP
Sales Manager
Hyatt Regency Chicago

Andrea joined GMC in 2012 and has been involved with the Community Services Committee and served as the 2014 Bowl-a-Thon Chair.

“Winning this award was a huge honor for me! It felt amazing to be recognized for my contributions to the chapter. There are so many dedicated members who do so much for PCMA and GMC and to be selected and recognized amongst them was a huge honor and accomplishment. “

Advantage of being a member of PCMA: Invaluable connections and being a part of an organization that gives back to the community and makes such a difference in the industry.

Fun Fact: “I have had a pen pal from Australia since 5th grade and we are still great friends today, seeing each other at least once a year and emailing/texting constantly!”