Failure Not an Option for 2020 PCMA Convening Leaders Keynote

Retired NASA flight director Gene Kranz joins leaders presenting in San Francisco

Former fighter pilot Gene Kranz knows a thing or two about effective leadership under pressure. He was on duty in 1970 as Apollo 13’s lead flight director when there was an explosion in the spacecraft’s service module that threatened the safety of three-man crew orbiting Earth. Failure simply wasn’t an option for Kranz, who was chief flight director for the successful Apollo 11 moon landing.

Kranz will share strategies, solutions and inspiration on creating an environment for excellence when he delivers one of four keynote presentations during 2020 PCMA Convening Leaders Jan. 5-8 in San Francisco. PCMA’s flagship annual event attracts thousands of business events professionals from around the world to gain insights from industry leaders, experience event design innovations and make important business connections.

“We are known for bringing leaders from outside the business events industry to share thought-provoking, practical and innovative strategies so we can continue to make business events a platform for global economic and social transformation,” said Sherrif Karamat, CAE, PCMA’s president and CEO. “Our program in San Francisco is designed to help our industry reach new levels of professional success, wider audiences for events and services and connect with local communities through meaningful social impact projects.”

Kranz joins keynote speakers Condoleezza Rice, 66th U.S. Secretary of State (2005-2009), Simon Sinek, author and organizational consultant, and Bozoma Saint John, chief marketing officer for Endeavor. Kranz’s keynote is sponsored by Visit Houston, hosts of the 2021 PCMA Convening Leaders.

He retired from NASA in 1994 after being flight director for 33 missions of projects Gemini, Apollo and Skylab. A best-selling author, Kranz has received many awards and honors including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which he received from President Richard Nixon for the Apollo 13 mission, and his designation as a Distinguished Member of the Senior Executive Service by President Ronald Reagan.

Learn more about PCMA Convening Leaders at

For media queries from the Americas and EMEA and requests for interviews with Sherrif Karamat, please contact:
Meghan Risch

For Asia Pacific media inquiries, please contact:
Jessica Kauffman, Senior Account Manager, ZADRO

About PCMA

PCMA believes that business events can economically and socially transform communities, enterprises and individuals. As the world’s largest platform for business events strategists and their business partners, PCMA’s success is driven by a commitment to providing provocative executive-level education, face-to-face networking and business intelligence to its membership of 8,400 professionals and students and global audience of over 100,000 business event stakeholders.

Through its Ascent leadership initiative to promote inclusion and diversity across the business events industry and beyond, PCMA seeks to empower those challenged by gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity or disabilities to find success.

Headquartered in Chicago, PCMA has 17 chapters throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico with members in more than 40 countries and regional offices in Northern Ireland, Australia and Singapore. Visit us at or on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.