Big ideas, innovative solutions, intimate setting at 2019 PCMA EduCon

‘Street scientist’ Sara Ross, songwriters John Ondrasik and Ciaran Gribbin to speak

PCMA will deliver personalized education content with actionable outcomes, networking opportunities and fresh approaches to solving industry issues during 2019 EduCon, June 25-28 in Los Angeles.

“PCMA is celebrated for programs that are cutting-edge and provocative, delivering what business events strategists need to be successful”, said Tonya Almond, PCMA Vice President of Knowledge and Experience Design. “At EduCon, each person will be able to tailor programs specifically for her own needs, in the format that best suits his learning style.”

EduCon, among PCMA’s portfolio of events, is recognized for a more focused and practical approach to learning in smaller-scale, collaborative education sessions. More than 800 business events professionals from a dozen countries joined EduCon in 2018, in comparison to PCMA’s annual Convening Leaders event which traditionally attracts around 4,500 attendees.

“EduCon provides focused sessions that help me with my relationships with colleagues, clients and suppliers. It offers me the opportunity to engage more actively in the sessions I attend”, said Annette Suriani, CMP, Chief Marketing Strategist for AMS Meetings Solutions.

EduCon 2019 is attracting high-profile business events professionals from association, corporate and healthcare sectors, including Walmart Inc., National Association of Corporate Directors, Abbott and Tableau Software Inc.

From left to right: Sara Ross, John Ondrasik, Ciaran Gribbin.

Learn. Grow. Connect.

PCMA is engaging leaders from both within and outside of the business events industry as presenters for its three-day event. Five for Fighting’s John Ondrasik will kick-off the event with inspirational keynote on how to design the world you want. Leadership expert Sara Ross, former vice president and global head of leadership at IHHP, will draw upon scientific research and personal experience for her keynote on managing emotional intelligence (EQ) to increase productivity and profitability, drive innovation and strengthen relationships. Former INXS singer, Grammy-nominated songwriter and Rock and Roll Team Building founder Ciaran Gribbin will present a high-energy keynote demonstrating the powerful role music can have in any organization.

Other speakers will provide one-hour sessions aligned with one of EduCon’s four key education studios.

  • Collaboration Studio, where attendees work together to find practical solutions to industry issues and participate in topical workshops
  • Deep Dive Studio, where groups can closely examine hot industry topics and explore the components most relevant to individual needs
  • Fresh Look Studio, where experts from outside the business events industry inspire participants to break down barriers and find creative problem-solving solutions
  • True Stories Studio, where sessions focus on case studies

Experiential learning in the form of post-session “After Chats” will follow most studio sessions.

Teambuilding and networking

The pre-conference Hackathon, facilitated by Jamie Murdock from Experient and Donna Kastner from, will allow participants to work in teams to come up with innovative solutions for how the hospitality and tourism industries can address unsheltered homeless individuals.

The Innovate + Elevate Hub, an evolution of the Innovate + Elevate Arena introduced at 2019 PCMA Convening Leaders, will provide fast-paced education sessions on the Accelerate Stage.

More than 200 domestic and international suppliers are confirmed to attend, with a strong mix of returning and new companies including international Air Canada, Discover Puerto Rico, GES, Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau, ISACA, MCI Group Canada, Palais Des Congres De Montreal, Vienna Tourism Board, VisitScotland, and US representatives from Destinations International, Events DC, Hilton Worldwide, InterContinental Hotels Group, Marriott International, Music City Center Nashville, NYC & Company, Teneo Hospitality Group, Ritz-Carlton Group, Visit Houston and more.

For the event program and to register, visit

For media queries from the Americas, APAC, EMEA, and requests for interviews with Sherrif Karamat, please contact: Meghan Risch, PCMA Chief of Staff, Vice President, Corporate Communications

About PCMA

PCMA, PCMA Foundation and CEMA educate, inspire, and listen, creating meaningful experiences where passion, purpose and commerce come together. We are the world’s largest community for Business Events Strategists, providing senior-level education, networking, and market intelligence for the global business events industry. Our mission is to drive social and economic progress through business events. Headquartered in Chicago, IL PCMA has 17 North American Chapters, regional communities in APAC, EMEA and LATAM, and members in 59 countries. The Corporate Event Marketing Association (CEMA), a PCMA subsidiary, advances strategic event marketing and marketing communications for senior-level event marketers and industry professionals. Visit us at

About PCMA Foundation

The role of the Foundation of PCMA is to support the mission of PCMA through fundraising and grant-giving focused on scholarships, education and research that will advance the business events industry. Annually the Foundation funds over $700K in impact, and since 1985 has funded over 2,500 scholarships, 100 research studies and education programs, and $2.7M in charitable giving.

About CEMA

The Corporate Event Marketing Association (CEMA) is the eminent community for senior event executives, association peers and industry partners and is an integral component of the Professional Convention Management Association’s (PCMA) brand collective. CEMA promotes professional networking opportunities, facilitates peer-to-peer knowledge sharing and drives industry standards. Through strong relationships with strategic partners, CEMA fosters both finding innovative solutions to business issues and continuous focus on members’ career growth. For more information, please visit

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