Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

April 01 2015

Member Spotlight: Meet Kim Christianson, CMP

Alena Frey, CMP, Greater Midwest Chapter Communications Committee
As chair of the newly-formed Events Committee, Kim Christianson, CMP, is tasked with overseeing and coordinating the social events and networking activities of the chapter. Throughout the next year, she will lead the charge to establish procedures which will assist the Education and Membership Committees in executing the logistical aspects of their events. Doing so will allow the committees to focus on the program content instead of the logistics. Kim says that this committee “will be a huge resource to other committees in utilizing our members’ expertise, contacts, and relationships.” Forming a new committee is no easy task, but Kim says that “communication and collaboration are of great importance.”

The road which lead Kim to spearheading the Events Committee isn’t exactly what you might expect. She graduated from college with a Special Education degree and taught in an elementary resource room for children with learning disabilities. After a little while she went back to school and earned a certificate in meeting planning, and ultimately ended up at the Radiological Society of North America, where she is currently the Senior Manager of Meeting Services. She says that in her position at RSNA she’s learned that “change is good.” While it “may be challenging, it’s a necessity in our industry with all of the new technology.” Having worked over 20 annual meetings, there are always areas to improve upon. She says she comes away each year with a list of valuable comments and suggestions for the next year.

When asked what her choice superpower would be she answered “to fly,” which would help with her long commute to and from Oak Brook for work. Spending long hours on the road each day makes her free time all the more valuable. She enjoys “running along the lakefront, taking in a Cubs game, live music at one of the many venues in the city or relaxing with friends at any of the great restaurants in Chicago.” When she needs some well-earned R&R she heads up to her family’s cottage in Wisconsin, allowing her to get out of the city, and spend time with friends and family.

Kim encourages other GMC members to “get involved in the chapter as much as you can.” She says that ‘joining a committee is a great way to meet people and learn about the different facets of the chapter. By attending the chapter events, you have an opportunity to network with different people and see familiar faces. I am continually learning from the educational programs and my peers. Over the years, I have thoroughly enjoyed being involved in the chapter. The relationships I have developed are invaluable.”

About the Author

Alena Frey, CMP is Conference Manager at American Planning Association. She is a member of the GMC Communications Committee.