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IAVM names new president

Vicki Hawarden

Vicki Hawarden

The International Association of Venue Managers’ (IAVM) Board of Directors recently announced the appointment of the new president and chief executive officer who will replace Dexter King, CFE, who announced his plans to retire in late 2010.

The appointment becomes effective August 15. IAVM is the world’s largest professional association dedicated to the issues relevant to the management of public assembly venues.

Vicki Hawarden, CMP, will be the new president and Chief Executive Officer. She brings to IAVM more than 20 years of association management experience.

“Vicki brings broad executive leadership, sound strategic vision and excellent tactical abilities to our organization,” said Chairman John Siehl, CFE. “She has a solid track record of establishing strong alliances with diverse partners, and creating innovative programs and improvements that produce desired results.”

Hawarden most recently served as vice president of Knowledge and Events with Meeting Professionals International (MPI). Her background also includes executive positions with the National Recreation and Park Association, the American Association of Blood Banks and the International Association for Exhibition Management.

During her four-year tenure at Meeting Professionals International, Hawarden managed the global training, exhibit, education, research, publishing and corporate social responsibility departments. She also led the team that rebranded and reinvented the Professional Education Conference-North America, transforming it into a cutting-edge and experimental conference called MeetDifferent.

As president and CEO of IAVM, Hawarden will be instrumental in continuing the organization’s international growth, strengthening its educational content and developing programs that resonate with young industry professionals.

“It is a privilege to be selected as IAVM’s next president and CEO,” said Hawarden. “Venue managers have such an incredible responsibility, not only to help nurture the vitality and economic health of their communities, but also to ensure the safety and security of their guests. In many cases, venues also serve as shelters or gathering points during times of crisis, so it’s critical that IAVM provide its members with the right education and tools to do their jobs effectively. IAVM has a rich history of doing just that and one of my priorities is to extend IAVM’s reach deeper into the venue management community.”

Hawarden holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and completed post graduate work in public relations. She is active in industry organizations and associations including the Convention Industry Council and the Professional Convention Management Association. In 2004, under her direction, the American Association of Blood Banks Meeting & TXPO was named by Trade Show Week Magazine one of the Fastest 50 growing tradeshows in the U.S.

In 2010, she was one of the recipients of the MPI Chairman’s Award for groundbreaking efforts to create globally accepted standards for the meeting and event industry.



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