Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

September 26 2016

Chapter Member Meets Former President George W. Bush

Sandy Wachter, CMP, Director of Meetings and Events American, Association of School Personnel Administrators


In August, I had the privilege of attending Connect Marketplace in Grapevine, Texas. Connect Marketplace is a reverse trade show that brings together planners and suppliers for three days of general sessions, high quality professional development, pre-set appointments and valuable networking.

We started off the event with a community service project where a group of planners and suppliers worked together to package 10,000 meals in under 45 minutes! The energy radiating from this group of colleagues was contagious!

I was able to meet one-on-one with over 40 representatives from different cities, hotels and venues. With the importance of building relationships in this industry, the time spent during these appointments was invaluable! In addition, I attended some fantastic professional development sessions which gave me new insight and ideas to bring back to my organization. Throughout these three days, Connect Marketplace provided numerous networking opportunities, including meal functions, breaks and after hour events.

The highlight of my trip was being selected to have my picture taken with the Friday mystery keynote speaker, former president, George W. Bush. I was one of 50 selected by the keynote sponsor out of 3,200 attendees. What an honor to actually meet and shake hands with a former president!

I would highly recommend this event to others. I hope to see you next year at Connect Marketplace in New Orleans! Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

1 Comment

  1. 1 Brad 06 Oct
    I might have been the first person that Sandy bumped into after meeting George Bush but due to security reasons she was still sworn to secrecy until after he was announced.  She was so excited that she had just met somebody but she couldn't tell me who.  Too Funny!   

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