Senior Event Manager Cassie Jones represented the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center as a Class Representative at the IAVM Venue Management School, which is considered one of the best professional education programs for venue managers. The New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center’s Exhibit Services Coordinator, Nicole Newton, also attended. The VMS, now in its 30th year, offers venue professionals the chance to explore their overall understanding of principles and practices for venue management.
More than 150 venue management professionals participated in the session, held in early June at the Oglebay Resort and Conference Center in Wheeling, WV. This year, Jones and Brent Hodson, director of marketing, Spectra-EnCana Events Centre in Dawson Creek, BC, were elected to serve as their group’s Class Representatives. Jones and Hodson will work with the Class Reps from the other two VMS groups to plan next year’s VMS Year 1 mentor program, speed networking, dine around, fun night, graduation ceremony and the fundraising portion of the event. The 2017 Class Representatives will be guided by Phil Jordan, CFE, Director of Salt Lake County Center for the Arts.
The VMS program, consists of two week-long courses of intensive instruction held over two consecutive years. The VMS curriculum covers topics such as event management, life safety, marketing and advertising, crowd management and the guest experience. The second year of VMS covers areas such as leadership and image, cost control, risk management and insurance, and strategic business planning.
Pictured at right: Brent Hodson, Director of Marketing, Spectra-EnCana Events Centre, Dawson Creek, BC; Danny Bryant, Area Manager, The Classic Center, Athens, GA; Kayln Denniston, Client Success Advocate, Event Booking, Knoxville, TN; Andrew Shreve, Box Office/Parking Manager, Spectra Venue Management (GRCC), Richmond, VA; Eboni Wilson, Event Service Manager, MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, NV; Phil Jordan, CFE, Director, Salt Lake County Center for the Arts, Salt Lake City, Utah; Cassie Jones, Senior Event Manager, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA; Michael Gerber, Director of Guest Services and Security, AEG, Scottsdale, AZ; Zakiya Smith-Dore, Event Coordinator, University of Florida Performing Arts, Gainesville, FL; Chris Engler, Director of Operation, MGM Resorts
Jones has served as senior event manager at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center since 2015. She previously served as Event Manager at Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati, OH, and was named “DECC Manager of the Year,” in 2014. In 2011, during her tenure as Event Manager at the Durham Performing Arts Center in Durham, NC, Jones was recognized with a Star award for her outstanding professional service to DPAC. She previously held the position of Event Manager at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon. A native of Kirtland, OH, Jones holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from Bowling Green State University in Ohio.
With 1.1 million square feet of contiguous exhibit space, an award winning staff and first class amenities, the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center is the sixth largest convention center in the nation, a consistent Top 10 host of the largest number of conventions and tradeshows annually, and one of the city’s “Top Workplaces.” As “Louisiana’s Economic Engine,” Convention Center event activity has produced $53.7 billion in economic impact since its 1985 opening, including $3.4 billion in new tax revenue for state and local governments.