Canadian Association of Exposition Management
ABOUT CAEM RISING STAR AWARD * 2014 Rising Star Award Winner

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2014 Rising Star Award

Kyle Dugan, CEM, Event Coordinator, CONEXSYS Registration Ltd.

Introductory Speech by Mike Russell, CEM:

It is my pleasure to present the very first CAEM Rising Star Award and I am sure you will agree that the person receiving this award is a shining example of a Rising Star.  This individual it seems has grown up in this industry so it seems like they have been around forever, but in reality they became a CAEM member in 2009. This individual  wasted no time at all in showing us how eager and professional they are by already earning their CEM Designation and volunteering on conference committees 3 years in a row as a committee co-chair, only to have their co-chair have to step aside twice in those 3 years leaving them to fend for themselves until the committee was able to find a new co-chair.  This did not phase our recipient, they just carried on completing the tasks at hand.  This just goes to show their willingness to work, not just “sit” on a committee.

This recipient goes above and beyond to provide and exceptional show experience for all of their clientele and does so with a winning personality, total commitment to their employer and to their clients.  This individual also has a great sense of humour and is full of enthusiasm.

During my personal experiences in dealing with this recipient,  I have always been impressed with the professionalism by which they conduct themselves , how focused this individual is on their tasks, the positive attitude that they project onto others and the constant wanting to improve the events they work on as well as themselves as an individual.

I can honestly say I do not think this individual knows the word “NO”!  They always seem to find a way to make things work and get things done in a professional manner.

I am privileged to call this individual a colleague but even more privileged to call them a friend and I believe that this individual is a Rising Star with no limits and is very much deserving of setting the Bench Mark in becoming the very first recipient of the CAEM Rising Star Award. Ladies and gentlemen please help me welcome Mister Kyle Dugan, CAEM’s Rising Star Award Recipient!


Acceptance Speech by Kyle Dugan, CEM:

Thank you Mike,

Although I am just barely coming up on 5 years with the association, CAEM has come to feel like an extended family to me.  My growth within this association has a lot to do with the great deal of support and encouragement I have received along the way. From my committee co-chairs, Karen Maki, Jaime Iusso and Tony Gallagher, who have all made volunteering for CAEM an outstandingly easy and rewarding experience, to Serge, Michael and Christiane, whose hard work and organization keep everything in motion.

A very special thank you to my nominators who I have had the pleasure of working with for a number of years now in various capacities, for recognizing me for this award. Mike, you have always been a shining example and personal role model for me when it comes to CAEM involvement, and I hope to take this award and continue to exceed the association’s expectations, even if I have to stroll out on stage in nothing but a Hawaiian lei in a couple years!

Even though you are thanking me tonight, I must admit I feel I have been taking more out of CAEM than I have put in. The opportunity I get to interact with many of you, absorbing the insight, advice and guidance you give, is worth way more than the price of admission. Speaking of the price of admission, I would also like to thank Nick and Colin VanMierlobensteyn with CONEXSYS for their continued support of my involvement with CAEM.

And finally, there is my longest standing mentor, who for 27 years has taken a personal interest in my success and helped me achieve pretty much anything I set my mind to. When I was about 7 years old I remember riding around the quiet aisles of a trade show floor in a golf cart, the night before the big opening day, helping her spot booth violations and missing masking drape. 20 years later, and I’m lucky enough to have the opportunity to collaborate and work with her on new projects all the time. Thank you Deborah, for everything you've done and continue to do to support my career. 

With that being said, for those of you who haven’t taken the leap, whether new to the group or if you've been around for years, I highly recommend joining a committee, getting involved and volunteering for CAEM. The connections you will make will be lasting and the rewards will be countless. Thanks again and I look forward to the opportunity to work and continue to work with all of you in the future.