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The International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE), a large association for show organizers, exhibitors and suppliers, celebrated a highly successful Expo! Expo!, which was held Dec. 10-12, in Houston, Texas.

Attracting slightly more than 2,000 attendees (pending independent audit), IAEE’s annual meeting and exhibition also featured 246 exhibitors to the George R. Brown Convention Center.

“This year’s Expo! Expo! is being touted as one of the best meetings we’ve held yet,” said David DuBois, president and CEO, IAEE. “I am very proud of how much we’ve accomplished in 2013 and am genuinely looking forward to another great year in 2014.”

IAEE logoKicking off on Dec. 10, the conference included a full day of education sessions from the nearly 80 sessions offered throughout the meeting. That evening, attendees enjoyed the opening reception where they were treated to a spectacular fireworks display over the convention center from Discovery Green in downtown Houston.

During the general session and CEM class of 2013 presentation on Dec. 11, IAEE recognized the 174 graduates of the 2013 CEM Learning Program as they joined the ranks of the more than 2,000 CEMs worldwide who have earned and maintained their designation. Keynote speaker Larry Winget, the Pitbull of Personal Development and Wall Street Journal/New York Times bestselling author entertained the crowd with his no-nonsense yet hilarious approach to life and business.

The General Session concluded with dancers leading the way to the Expo! Expo! show hall, featuring 36,400 net square feet of exhibit space. Expo! Expo! was also available online through IAEE’s partnership with Convention News Television (CNTV). CNTV’s live stream allowed viewers to experience the show floor and interviews with key industry figures in real time. That evening, more than 450 attendees helped raise a record-breaking $20,000 for Child Advocates, Inc. of Houston by attending the fifth annual Humanity Rocks: A Celebration with a Cause at the House of Blues.

On Dec. 12, the annual luncheon and awards ceremony opened with impromptu interviews conducted by speaker Joel Zeff, followed by a warm welcome from Vice President of Sales Operations & Market Strategy for Los Angeles Tourism Barbara Kirklighter, who invited attendees to return to Expo! Expo! in 2014.

IAEE recognized its individual award honorees as well as Platinum Circle inductees, graduates of the IAEE Robert L. Krakoff Leadership Institute, this year’s Best of Show winner from IAEE’s Art of the Show Competition, the Exhibition Industry Foundation’s Helen Brett Scholarship recipients and participants of IAEE’s 20 Under 30 program.

More than 400 Expo! Expo! attendees voted on the Ultimate Winner for #BoothLove, IAEE and BizBash’s newest program recognizing outstanding booth/stand display. Marriott International Tradeshow Booth became the first Ultimate Winner of #BoothLove. Zeff closed the program with entertaining exercises involving audience members to demonstrate the power of teamwork and communication in the business environment.

Expociety, the closing event for the meeting and exhibition, provided attendees a platform to further develop connections made at this year’s event as well as create new ones that will flourish and reconnect next year.

Expo! Expo! 2014 will be held Dec. 9-11 in Los Angeles, Calif. at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Approximately 75 percent of the space available for next year’s exhibition will be reserved in an online space draw on Feb. 11-12, 2014. For more details, visit www.myexpoexpo.com.

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