WASHINGTON, DC – The Meetings Mean Business Coalition (MMB), a cross-industry communications and advocacy initiative, has appointed Paul Van Deventer, president and CEO, Meeting Professionals International (MPI), as coalition co-chair, effective January 2017, it was announced Oct. 18
Van Deventer will work with fellow co-chair Richard Harper, executive vice-president, HelmsBriscoe, to lead the organization as it highlights the critical role of in-person meetings, conferences, conventions, incentive travel, trade shows and exhibitions.
“Paul is already an active coalition member and I am thrilled to work alongside him next year as we continue to expand MMB’s reach and influence,” said Harper. “He is the first MMB co-chair who leads a meeting professionals organization and his insights and experience will help us spread the MMB message to a larger audience in the coming years.”
Under Van Deventer and Harper’s leadership, MMB will continue to shine a light on the industry’s value around the world by working with partners, including MPI, to host the second annual Global Meetings Industry Day (GMID). They will also work to continue building awareness and driving engagement with key stakeholders, including business leaders, policymakers and the media. In addition, the coalition will work with its newly formed Meeting Planners Task Force to engage this critical segment of professionals and use their powerful voices as advocates for the industry.
Van Deventer assumes the leadership position previously held by Michael Dominguez, senior vice-president and chief sales officer at MGM Resorts International, who has co-led MMB since 2015. Under Dominguez’s leadership, the coalition has expanded its reach across the globe; showcased the importance of how face-to-face affects the presidential race; received testimonies from business leaders both in and outside of the industry, validating its importance; and refreshed MMB’s online presence with a new website. With his guidance and support, MMB has grown to encompass more than 50 members and continues to shape discussions around some of the meetings and events industry’s most critical issues.