Leadership

Your Trusted Community.The Industry Voice.Knowledge & Learning.

The IAEE Board of Directors plays a critical role in setting the direction for the association, ensuring necessary resources are in place for carrying out the mission, values and vision. They establish IAEE policies and priorities based upon the mission; represent member needs; ensure the financial stability and growth of the association; and promote the broad exhibitions and events industry.

IAEE Board of Directors

2024 Chairperson

Marie Browne

Marie Browne, MBA

Group Vice President
RX

As Group Vice President for RX, Marie is responsible for leading the LaunchPad team.  Her focus is to drive growth for the business via the launch and management of new events.   Marie assumed this role in late 2016 which has resulted in the launch of eight events in 2018.

Marie has been at Reed for 18 years and has held a variety of event management and corporate development roles.   Her immediate past position was Vice President of Corporate Development where she handled multiple acquisitions in the US, Mexico and Brazil.

Prior to joining RX, Marie held senior marketing positions at a number of event management and membership organizations.

Marie holds a Masters of Business Administration degree with concentrations in marketing and finance from the University of Connecticut.

Chairperson-Elect

Chuck Grouzard

Executive Vice President, Business Development
GES

Chuck Grouzard is EVP of Business Development at GES with over 36 years of industry experience. His leadership in business development for North America has fueled company growth by creating new revenue opportunities, initializing cost savings, and driving innovation and thought leadership.

Chuck has collaborated with clients including SEMICON West, Material Handling Industry of America, and the National Safety Council. He is currently Chairperson Elect for International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) and Chair for the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR). Chuck is also past president of Exhibitions Services and Contractors Association, and the Midwest Chapter of IAEE. Chuck was recognized by Connect Corporate as one of 15 over 50 award winners for impacting and advancing the meetings and events industry.

Secretary/Treasurer

Mary Bender

VP of Sales & Operations
Taffy Event Strategies

Mary has been in the trade show industry for 20 years and has excelled in a variety of roles including sales and marketing for service providers as well as show management teams. Prior to joining Taffy Events, Mary led marketing and sponsorship sales efforts for U.S Boat Shows, a division of Informa Exhibitions. Prior to Informa, Mary worked for trade show industry companies including Smart City, Sands Expo & Convention Center, GES and Emerald Expositions (formerly GLM). In addition, Mary has been active in the trade show industry serving on the Southwest Chapter board for IAEE as well as multiple committees focusing on awards, education and innovation.

Immediate Past Chairperson

Dennis Smith, MBA

Vice President of Business Development
Asian American Hotel Owners Association

Dennis is the Vice President of Business Development for the Asian American Hotel Owners Association. Previously Dennis held the title of Sr. Director for Exposition Sales and Business Development at AVIXA which is the global trade association for the pro AV and integrated experiences industry. Mr. Smith began his trade show career in Europe and spent close to 18 years living and working in countries like Germany, United Kingdom and Turkey working for some of the top trade show organizations to include Deutsche Messe and Messe Frankfurt.

Apart from launching his own trade show company in 1997, Dennis has held several executive level positions and has been directly responsible for organizing more than 250 different international events in more than 30 countries covering a multitude of industries to include textiles, automotive, manufacturing, technology, food and construction.

Born in Colorado and having served in the US Army, Dennis has an MBA in International Business and is highly experienced in global strategy for events around the globe.

Dennis is married with two children and currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia.

Director

Mark Bogdansky

Mark Bogdansky

Vice President, Tradeshows and Community Engagement
Auto Care Association

Mark Bogdansky is the Vice President, Tradeshows and Community Engagement for the Auto Care Association. Bogdansky oversees all tradeshows for the Auto Care Association, its segments, committees and managed associations, including the AAPEX and HDAW shows. His responsibilities include strategic planning, tradeshow management, partner and vender relationships, contract negotiation and on-site logistics.

Prior to joining the Auto Care Association in November 2016, Bogdansky worked on the conventions for the National Retail Federation and Heart Rhythm Society. Prior to that, Mark was a high school teacher and college basketball coach.

He is an active member of the International Association of Exhibition and Events, and currently serves as the Immediate Past Chair of the MATSO Council. He has also served on multiple industry advisory boards and committees and spoken at several industry events.

Raised in Boston, Bogdansky graduated from Yeshiva University in New York, with a bachelor of arts in mathematics and a minor in business. He lives with his son in Maryland.

Director

Mike Carlucci

Mike Carlucci

Chief Operating Officer
Clarion Events, North America

Since joining Clarion Events in 2014, Mike Carlucci has transformed North America’s sales, operations, and service functions as an instrumental leader in driving revenue for Clarion by focusing on sales enablement, building teams, and developing a distinctive and inclusive culture.

Carlucci serves as Chief Operating Officer, leading North America’s sales, operations, and service arm and driving the commercial vision for customer success, partnership, and scaling the sales functions for growth and profitability. In 2023, his role expanded to manage the key attendee team, focused on further developing insight and value driven programs. In addition, he plays a critical role in building quality industry partnerships by aligning stakeholders, needs, and expectations to drive revenue operations and service to deliver experiences seamlessly and consistently.

Through his unwavering dedication to enhancing the customer experience and innate ability to address customer needs, he fosters strong relationships within the business and across the industry to develop and deliver customer-centric strategies and processes that improve customer satisfaction, loyalty, and retention.

Prior to joining Clarion, Mike spent 13 years at Reed Exhibitions, advancing to Group Portfolio Director during his tenure, where he oversaw sales on a large portfolio of events, including Global Gaming Expo and The Vision Expos.

Mike attended Bentley University. He is married with two daughters and lives in Connecticut.

Director

Michael Clarke

Michael Clarke

Senior Director, B2B Events, Programs, and Partnerships

Portfolio, Luxury & Leisure, Global Sales Organization – US & Canada

Marriott International Inc. & Marriott International Luxury Brands

Michael leads a dynamic team of marketing and business event professionals inside the Global Sales Organization at Marriott International. With a focus of assisting the GSO Team in staying connected with Marriott’s largest volume customers within association, corporate, intermediary, wholesale, retail and TMC segments, he works with key GSO executive and associate stakeholders to provide strategy and relevant, personalized information and content to group, business transient and leisure travel customer channels, enabling more efficient decision making and problem solving across Marriott’s portfolio of 30 brands.

In addition, Michael manages Marriott’s meeting, event and tradeshow division, producing internal sales and external customer facing events across all segments and within all premium and luxury brands. Further, he is responsible for all of Marriott’s sponsor and partner programs with all industry associations and organizations.

He and his team recently launched Marriott’s first and very successful hybrid event – Connect With Confidence – showcasing an effective planning approach to both virtual and in-person events with the purpose of encouraging our industry to once again consider face-to-face business events within a well-being environment.

Director

Emile K. Davis, CEM

Emile K. Davis, CEM

Managing Director, Business Development
The American Institute of Architects (AIA)

Emile K. Davis is the Managing Director of Business Development at the American Institute of Architects (AIA). AIA is the largest design organization in the world and represents the interest of over 100,000 architects, designers, and the built environment, dedicated to designing and constructing an innovative, safe, and sustainable world.

In his role, Emile oversees all sales initiatives and relationship management with exhibitors, sponsors, advertisers, and corporate partners. Prior to joining AIA in 2023, he spent 26 years at the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), where he served as the Director of Exhibits & Sponsorships, leading sales, client experience, and operations for all SHRM events.

With over 25 years of experience, Emile excels in relationship management, strategic sales, competitive positioning, and organizing large events and tradeshows. He is a graduate of George Mason University with a degree in Marketing, holds a CEM from the International Association of Exhibitions & Events (IAEE), and chaired the IAEE Expo! Expo! Advisory Committee in 2023 and 2022. Emile received the Trade Show Manager of the Year (SMOTY) Award in 2019 and was featured in the 2016 Connect 40 Under 40 Next List.

Beyond his professional achievements, Emile, together with his wife Mattu, celebrates 20+ years of marriage and are proud parents to three lovely children. During his leisure time, he indulges in airplanes, reading, soccer, travel, and cherishing moments with his family.

Director

Michelle Edmonson, CEM

Michelle Edmonson, CEM

Vice President, Exhibitions
AMT – The Association for Manufacturing Technology

Michelle Edmonson, CEM is the Vice President, Exhibitions at AMT – The Association for Manufacturing Technology. She previously held the position of Senior Director – Events and Content; AMT-The Association For Manufacturing Technology. Her 25+ years of trade show history allows her to combine her experience with fresh ideas to all AMT Events – including IMTS – The International Technology Show. Michelle recently stepped into the role of managing content for the Association and continues to help develop new products for the MT marketplace.

Director

Sonia Fong, MBA

Sonia Fong, MBA

Vice President of Sales & Marketing
MDM Hotel Group

Strategic sales & marketing leader with extensive experience in the hospitality industry.  Ms. Fong leads the sales and marketing efforts across all of MDM’s properties, which include the JW Marriott Marquis Miami, Hotel Beaux Arts an Autograph Collection, JW Marriott Miami, Miami Marriott Dadeland and the Courtyard Miami Dadeland Hotel.

 

Ms. Fong’s responsibilities include developing and implementing the sales and marketing plan, outlining specific sales goals & marketing objectives and priorities, overseeing the sales and marketing teams to achieve annual revenue goals and sales optimization, 

 

Prior to joining the MDM Hotel Group, she was Senior Vice President of Convention Development for Louisville Tourism and worked for the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) for 21 years serving in various sales positions including Vice President of Convention Sales & Services. 

 

Fong has her Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management and her MBA from Florida International University. She’s fluent in Spanish and conversational in Mandarin and Cantonese.

 

Legal Counsel

Paula Cozzi Goedert

Paula Cozzi Goedert

Attorney
Barnes & Thornberg LLC

Chair of the firm’s Associations and Foundations group, Paula Goedert represents nonprofit organizations, including professional societies, trade associations, public charities and private foundations. Paula offers a depth of experience in guiding nonprofits through the challenges they face, and appreciates the opportunity to help make a difference.

Director

Mary Pat Heftman

Mary Pat Heftman

President
MPH LLC

Mary Pat is the Principal of MPH Solutions, LLC, a newly launched consultancy assisting association and for-profit trade show & event organizations to achieve their full potential strategically, operationally and financially.

Over her 30-year career, Mary Pat is known worldwide as a senior executive at the National Restaurant Association and Winsight Media, leading the National Restaurant Association Show’s unprecedented innovation and growth.

Mary Pat’s career-long active involvement in leadership roles at MATSO, PCMA, CEIR and IAEE propelled those organizations into the future and current status as leaders in their respective association categories.

Director

Anytra Lowe, CEM

Anytra Lowe, CEM

EVP, Client Solutions
Freeman

Anytra D. Lowe began her career in the events industry in 1996.  Anytra joined Freeman in 2004 and has held several positions such as Senior National Account Manager, Assistant Director of Sales of Las Vegas, and Director, National Account Management.  Anytra was also responsible for overseeing many Association, Corporate, and Technology customer events while Vice President, Expositions of California.  Her concentrated experience in both sales and account management has consistently helped customers elevate the show planning experience.

Currently, as Executive Vice President, Client Solutions, Anytra strategizes with internal teams and customers on high-level logistics, creating and implementing project plans focused on retention, account management, a superior service.   She often takes a “no excuses” approach to account service and continuously develops our internal teams to align with customer and industry expectations.

Anytra joined the IAEE Board of Directors beginning in January 2022 and has extensively participated IAEE Chapter events as well as the Krakoff Leadership Institute and several task forces.  Anytra is based in Las Vegas, has two children, three dogs, a turtle, and is an avid supporter of the National Brain Tumor Society.

Director

Brian Pagel

Brian Pagel

Executive Vice President
Emerald X 

Brian Pagel currently serves as the Executive Vice President of Business Development and oversees the Residential and Commercial Connections portfolio at Emerald.  Brian began his career at Shore Varrone in 1998 and has worked in a variety of leadership positions with Bill Communications, VNU, Nielsen Expositions and Emerald.

Brian has produced nearly 100 events in his career, successfully repositioned several struggling properties and was a part of the deal team that acquired CEDIA Expo in 2017.  In 2013 he helped to champion an effort to co-locate the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) with the International Builders Show (IBS), creating Design and Construction Week. Brian holds a degree in Organizational Communications from the University of Kansas and is an active volunteer with both the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) and the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE).  He is also a frequent industry speaker, blogger and guest columnist.

Brian is originally from Littleton, Colorado, but currently lives and works in Alpharetta, Georgia.

Director

Necoya Tyson CEM-AP, CCEP, CGMP

Necoya Tyson CEM-AP, CCEP, CGMP

Owner & CEO
Lightsey Event Solutions (LES), Convention and Tradeshow Management

Necoya Tyson, CEM-AP, CCEP, CGMP, CWP is the visionary entrepreneur and driving force behind Lightsey Event Solutions (LES), a leading conference and tradeshow management firm. With a passion for creating unparalleled event experiences and a keen understanding of the intricacies of the industry, Necoya has built a reputation for excellence and innovation.

Having started LES from the ground up, Necoya brings a wealth of expertise in tradeshow logistics, strategic planning, and client relationship management. With a career spanning almost 20 years in the tradeshow and event management sector, she has successfully overseen the execution of numerous high-profile events, earning the trust of clients and industry partners alike.

Beyond her professional pursuits, Necoya is an active participant in industry associations and forums, contributing her insights to further elevate the standards of tradeshow management. She is a graduate of Shaw University with a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications. She is also a certified corporate event planner (CCEP), certified exhibition manager-advanced professional (CEM-AP) and certified government meetings professional (CGMP).

Director

Nichapa “Nikki” Yoswee, CEM

Nichapa “Nikki” Yoswee, CEM

Senior Vice President
Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB)

Nichapa Yoswee is a seasoned professional with over 30 years of experience in the field of international business events. Her journey has been defined by a relentless pursuit of excellence, making her a notable figure in the business world. As a strategic thinker, Nichapa is known for her creativity and innovation, always push the boundaries and capitalize on emerging opportunities. Her leadership style is marked by versatility, and her skills in various aspects of business management including investment policy and framework development. She has played a pivotal role in shaping the sustainability practice in Thailand’s business event industry.

Nichapa’s adeptness in stakeholder management has been a driving force in her professional accomplishments. Her ability to build strong relationships with governmental, non-governmental, public, and private entities both on a national and global level has been crucial in fostering partnerships and securing strategic alliances. In her impressive journey, Nichapa has gained extensive knowledge and market intelligence across diverse industries, including international business, tourism, manufacturing, and business events. This resourceful understanding of the market has given her a competitive edge and allowed her to make informed decisions that propel organizations forward. With an illustrious career defined by leadership, innovation, and strategic vision, Nichapa Yoswee continues to be an inspiring figure in the world of international business, leaving a lasting impact on the organizations and industries she has touched.

Ex-Officio Members

Representing IAEE Asia Council

Gu Xuebin, CEM

Gu Xuebin, CEM

Founder and CEO
WeMeet

As a serial entrepreneur, Mr. Gu Xuebin focused on technology and event industry for 20 years, developed Info Salons into the leading brand for event technology services in the world. He founded WeMeet, the first smart event and smart travel global service network. Partnering with world class technology and travel companies, WeMeet empowers business travelers with exceptional technology and services, to enrich their global meeting and travel experiences for a greater business success.

Prior to that, he took different IT and management roles for IBM, Mellon Bank, and other multinational companies in both China and the United States.

Mr. Gu Xuebin was certified as CEM (Certified in Exhibition Management) by IAEE, PMP (Project Management Professional) by PMI. He became a registered CEM instructor in 2006 and has been teaching Event Information Management class in China for the past 13 years.

Mr Gu Xuebin was appointed as the Chairman of IAEE Asia Council in 2017.

Representing Chapters Leaders Council

Sarah Kokernot, CEM, CMP

Sarah Kokernot, CEM, CMP

Director of Meetings & Events
Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Society

Sarah Kokernot is the Director of Meetings and Events at the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, where she heads the tradeshow and meetings team. Sarah is a graduate of the University of Texas in San Antonio with a BA in Geography. She is originally from Boerne, Texas where she currently resides with her two children.

Representing the IAEE China Council

Daben Mao

Daben Mao

Executive Deputy General Manager
Shenzhen World Exhibition and Convention Center

He has been in the exhibition trade over 30 years and gained rich experience in the organization of exhibitions both home and abroad. He started exhibition training since 2002 and organized several Exhibition Practical training courses in Germany and Exhibition Management training courses in China. Since December 2003, he developed the CEM (Certified in Exhibition Management) training program and made considerable contribution to China’s exhibition industry.

Athena Gong

Athena Gong

Managing Director, Informa Markets China
VP, Informa Markets Asia

Athena Gong is now working as VP of Informa Markets Asia and the managing director of Informa Markets China, leading teams in various market areas including maternity and infant products, healthcare, construction, advanced manufacturing, lifestyle, jewelry and electronics. Business covers exhibitions, digital products, print publications, new media, and marketing solutions. From 2003 to 2010, She worked at Global Sources and served successively as business development director, regional sales manager, domestic sales manager and other sales management positions, mainly responsible for “International Electronic Business”, “Electronic Engineering Album” and IIC-China exhibitions and magazines.

Athena graduated from the School of International Cultural Exchange of Shanghai International Studies University and EMBA at China Europe International Business School.

Representing IAEE Consumer Events Council

Michelle Metter

Michelle Metter

Partner
Fast Forward Event Productions

With close to three decades in the B2B and B2C event’s industry, Michelle has driven strategies and teams through the launch and growth of trade shows, conferences, symposiums, consumer shows and festivals both domestically and abroad. Her career spans a range of industry sectors from outdoor to alcohol beverage, large top 200 association trade shows to small, independently owned launches. Her company, Fast Forward Events, launched in 2004 and through it she has led her team through the expansion of award-winning shows such as the San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival, SommCon, and acquisition of the Craft Beverage Experience, Craft Beverage Expo, and Women in Craft.

Michelle is a sought-after speaker at industry conferences and a recognized thought leader in the live event sector. Her influence transcends organizational boundaries, as she currently serves on the board of the Society of Independent Show Organizers (SISO), where she chairs the B2C Special Interest Group, and holds an Ex-Officio board member position with the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) while chairing the Public Events Council. She is a current board member for the San Diego Events Coalition (SDEC) and the San Diego Tourism Authority as well as serving on the Board of Governors for Home of Guiding Hands.

Michelle lives in San Diego, soaking up the Southern California sunshine, sushi and tacos with her husband and two daughters, Harper and Elliot, and dog, Bowie.

Representing the IAEE MATSO Council

John Rozum, Chairperson

John Rozum

Senior Director of Industry Sectors
Association of Equipment Manufacturers

Rozum is Senior Director of Ag & Utility Exhibitions and Events at the Association of Equipment Manufacturers. A self-described “event nerd” with more than two decades of experience leading some of the largest trade shows in the United States, Rozum plays a critical role in the planning and execution of industry-leading trade shows such as The Utility Expo and CONEXPO-CON/AGG, as well as Commodity Classic. In addition, he is currently serving as Chairperson of Major American Trade Show Organizers (MATSO) and President of the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA). Rozum joined AEM in 2013.

He started his career in radio and found his way to the event industry, where he spent more than a decade leading the World Dairy Expo. He earned a Bachelor of Science in both Ag Journalism and Poultry Science from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Representing the Past Chairpersons’ Advisory Group

Randy Bauler, MBA, CEM

Randy Bauler, MBA, CEM

Corporate Relations and Exhibits Director
American Association of Critical-Care Nurses

Randy Bauler, MBA, CEM, is Corporate Relations & Exhibits Director for the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) in Aliso Viejo, California.  Randy has worked for AACN for more than 27 years and is responsible for directing the sales and marketing of exhibit space and sponsorship support for the healthcare association’s annual conference, called the National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition®.

Randy served as Chairman of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) in 2008. He held various positions on the IAEE Board of Directors 2002-2009, and Randy currently represents the IAEE Past Chairmen as an ex-officio member of the 2024 IAEE Board. Randy has served IAEE for more than 20 years in a variety of roles as a committee and Task Force chair and member, and as chair and director of IAEE’s Southwest Chapter.

IAEE Executive Leadership Team

Marsha Flanagan

Marsha Flanagan, M. Ed., CEM

President & CEO
IAEE

Marsha Flanagan, M.Ed., CEM is the President and CEO of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events® (IAEE). As IAEE’s president, Flanagan is responsible for the management of IAEE’s full-time professional staff, producing the annual business operating plan and budget, overseeing the support of all meetings of governance units, leading business development, directing fund raising efforts, advocating for the industry and the organization’s members, providing organizational leadership and strategic counsel to the board. Also, she serves as the association’s representative with industry coalitions, partner organizations and strategic alliances.

Prior to joining PPAI, Flanagan was the Director of Content Strategy and Development at the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), where she was responsible for steering strategy and the development and delivery of all PPAI professional development and editorial offerings.

Flanagan spent 6 years in the medical industry serving in various roles overseeing operations, purchasing, revenue cycle management, marketing and business development.

Flanagan began her career with Meeting Professionals International (MPI) and spent 12 years in various roles including Executive Vice President of Professional Development where she oversaw operations, including all strategic partnerships, the design and delivery of all professional development offerings and meetings management.

She was named one of the 25 Most Influential People in the Meetings Industry by Successful Meetings in 2017 and named to BizBash’s Inaugural Top 500 in the Events Industry in 2018 and 2019. In 2021, she was listed in Meetings Today as a 2021 Trendsetter. In 2021, she obtained her GBAC Trained Technician Certificate of Completion from the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), a division of ISSA.

Flanagan received her bachelor’s degree from Texas Christian University and her master’s in education from the University of Arkansas specializing in Meeting, Tourism and Recreation Management. She obtained her Certified in Exhibition Management designation in 2021.

Flanagan is a 5th generation Texan, loves sports and the outdoors and spending time with family.

Lisa Buchanan

Senior Vice President of Operations
IAEE

Lisa Buchanan is IAEE’s Senior Vice President of Operations where she directs the general management of IAEE staff and is responsible for the association’s various departments including membership, chapter relations, digital strategy, marketing and communications, public relations, leading efforts towards growing IAEE membership and exploring new revenue streams. Previously she held the role of Vice President, Engagement and Digital Strategy and was formerly the Director of Membership and Chapter Engagement at the International Association for Exhibitions and Events (IAEE), where she was responsible for all membership and chapter initiatives across the globe. She works with the various chapter boards and committees to identify member needs and membership products and services.

Prior to joining IAEE, Buchanan spent 10 years in the medical and dental industry serving in various roles overseeing operations, purchasing, revenue cycle management, marketing, and business development. 

Buchanan began her career with Meeting Professionals International (MPI) and spent 8 years in various roles including Director of Global Chapter Relations and Member Services where she oversaw all membership and chapter functions for over 50 chapters worldwide.

 

Scott Stanton, CEM, CAE

Chief Financial Officer
IAEE

Scott Stanton, CEM, CAE, joined the IAEE staff in 1999, and shortly thereafter was promoted to Chief Financial Officer. His primary responsibilities include oversight of all finance-related functions, including reporting, budgeting and investments. He also oversees the information systems and human resources departments, and handles office management. Mr. Stanton also serves as Chief Financial Officer of the Center for Exhibition Industry Research.

He received Bachelors of Business Administration degrees in both Accounting and Finance from Texas A&M University and an MBA in Management from Amberton University. Mr. Stanton earned IAEE’s Certified in Exhibition Management designation in 2013, and the Certified Association Executive in 2017. He is very active in his community, serving as a Boy Scout leader for 10 years. He enjoys scuba diving, woodworking and is a novice bagpiper.