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Rachel Thomas_SGIA Smart Meetings winner
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SGIA’s Rachel Thomas Named Rising Star in “Smart Women in Meetings” Awards

The Specialty Graphic Imaging Association is proud to announce Director of Exhibit Services Rachel Thomas, CEM, has been named a “2019 Smart Women in Meetings” award winner in the “Rising Star” category. The award honors women in the early stages of their career who are already making their mark on the meetings industry.

Now in its fourth year, the “Smart Women in Meetings” awards recognizes the meetings industry’s top female professionals in seven categories: Hall of Fame, Visionaries, Industry Leaders, Innovators, Entrepreneurs, Stellar Performers and Rising Stars. Nominated by their industry peers and colleagues, and ranked against hundreds of remarkable, qualified meeting candidates, these award winners have earned top honors for their commitment and significant contributions to the meetings industry.

Thomas joined the SGIA staff in 2018 to oversee the SGIA Expo and PRINTING United tradeshow floors. Her prior experience, as manager of exhibits for the National Business Aviation Association, included work on three tradeshows, including NBAA-BACE, one of the 10 largest tradeshows in the U.S.

“Rachel is always looking for innovations—either behind-the-scenes or outward-facing—that will improve our customers’ experiences,” says Lexy Olisko, vice president, expositions, SGIA. “She’s been a great addition to our team.”

“As the leader of a woman-owned business under the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, I am honored to promote such a worthy cause for my fellow women in meetings to celebrate our industry, and support and salute each other’s goals and accomplishments,” says Smart Meetings founder and CEO Marin Bright. “The ‘Smart Women in Meetings’ awards are especially close to my heart. I am proud to provide a platform for all the women in our industry who drive change and celebrate our progress together as one united community.”

Smart Women in Meetings award winners are featured in the March issue of Smart Meetings magazine, and will receive on-stage honors at the Smart Women in Meetings Awards gala on May 8 in Las Vegas.

SGIA is a trade association for the leaders of the 21st Century printing industry. SGIA members are bold, driven, creative and riding a wave of technology and innovation. In addition to providing high-quality information and educational resources designed to help move the printing community forward, SGIA produces the leading trade shows PRINTING United (Dallas, Oct. 23-25) and Graphics of the Americas (Miami, Feb. 27-29, 2020). For more info, visit

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