2011 Exposition Hall of Fame Inductee
Elizabeth McCullough, C.D.E., General Manager, Trade Shows, Canadian Institute of Plumbing & Heating
Introduction Speech by Paul Day, C.D.E.
I am truly honored to be up here once again to introduce our newest member to CAEM’s Hall of Fame – this time in the Exposition category.
I have known this member for over 15 years and have had the pleasure to witness first hand he/or she’s dedication to hard work and commitment. This person has been a member of CAEM since the early 90’s and has held just about every imaginable position possible including President and Conference Chair, and has worked on almost every committee going; often on more than one at a time.
Having sat on some of the committees with this person, I have been in awe as to how he/or she has been able to delve into the Association issues at hand, and bring to the table more than what was required at the same time while orchestrating one or two of Canada’s largest events. I could always count on this person for covering my rear not only at committee homework time but also if I needed anything to do with my job as a Show Manager.
As a fellow CDE this member has always known the importance of the Industry education CAEM provides, and has successfully communicated that to each employer by bringing in new fellow employee members. This member is a great mentor to our youth and is always available to help out new members while still remaining calm. (Of course valium helps!)
To demonstrate this member’s commitment to CAEM, he/or she actually held the position of Past President for two terms, which I believe is only the second time this has happened in our 30+ year history. This proves how her peers think about her and her commitment.
I know her suppliers cherish the working relationship they have with her and her loyalty to them over the years and I personally know that she treats them all as one big team to make her shows stand out and succeed.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to welcome to this year’s Hall of Fame in the Exposition category a fellow CDE and Etta James blues fan – Ms. Elizabeth McCullough.
Acceptance Speech by Elizabeth McCullough:
CAEM has been a major part of my career and life over the last almost twenty years, so to be recognized by my peers is truly an honour. Thank you to those of you who nominated me, to the Nominating Committee and to the CAEM Board of Directors.
When I first joined CAEM, I was definitely not confident about speaking in public, wasn’t an incredibly experienced show manager and I hardly knew anyone in the industry. Networking was not my strong suit. I had a lot to learn. I thought if I volunteered for a committee it would make it easier… the other committee members would HAVE to talk to me. I was immediately welcomed into the “club” by the other committee members and pretty soon was getting introduced to lots of members.
My employer encouraged me to attend seminars, the conference, read the bulletins and generally tried to soak in as much information as I could and I took advantage of it all and have learned so much over the years. But for me, the most powerful benefit of CAEM was and still is the opportunity to talk one on one with other show managers and suppliers. This association has such a wealth of bright and talented people; getting involved on committees allowed me to tap into all that knowledge.
Being on the Board of Directors and serving as CAEM President was a wonderful experience. Not only did it add to my knowledge and understanding of industry issues, but I developed friendships and professional relationships with industry members from all across Canada.
For those of you wondering if you should join a CAEM committee... do it. You’ll be glad you did. You will benefit your industry, your customers, your employer and yourself. You will enhance your skills, learn new ones… and you will be a more successful show professional.
Yes, it does require an investment in time; anything really worthwhile does.
Over the years, I have had the honour and pleasure to work with many associate members. You are an extraordinary group of professionals and while you are suppliers, I consider you to be integral to the success of every show. I especially need to thank two individuals who have gone the distance with and for me in so many ways and they are Sonia Moffatt of Freeman and Deborah Dugan of Conexsys.
Paul Day, thank you for your kind remarks. You have been such a great friend and sounding board for me, and you make me laugh. I truly cherish our friendship.
I do have a couple other people that I must acknowledge and thank.
The president of the Canadian Institute of Plumbing & Heating, Ralph Suppa is here this evening. Ralph, you are a great leader, supporter and is an absolute pleasure to work with… and you welcomed me back in 2009. You are so cool! My other co-workers at CIPH are not here, but I would be remiss if I did not mention them: there is not a finer group of people anywhere and I consider myself lucky to be a part of that team.
And of course, my husband Terry who makes everything worth while. I actually met Terry at the first trade show I ever worked on; I placed his booth right beside his competitor and it was a show where exhibitors and visitors discussed pricing. That’s really the only time that worked to my advantage!
Show management isn’t always easy, but it is always challenging and exciting and I am grateful for the many friends and resources through CAEM to guide me along the way. If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing.