IAEE Board of Directors
Tom Cindric, Jr., CEM
Senior Vice President
Informa, Global Exhibitions, Infrastructure Events
Tom Cindric, Jr., CEM has been involved in the trade show and exhibition industry for 25 years working primarily for leading for-profit business media companies and trade associations and overseeing the management of several trade show 200 events.
As Senior Vice President at Informa Global Exhibitions, Infrastructure Events, Cindric has full profit and loss responsibility for Informa Global Exhibitions U.S. commercial events and several international commercial events. He was instrumental in helping Hanley Wood, prior to its acquisition by Informa, become one of the top exhibition companies in North America.
Cindric oversees the production of some of Informa’s leading events such as World of Concrete (WOC), the largest annual construction show in the U.S. and ranked 18th on the TSE Gold 100; Water & Wastewater Equipment, Treatment & Transport (WWETT) show, ranked 56th on the TSE Gold 100; and, with the recent acquisition of Penton, Waste Expo (WXPO) which is ranked 87th on the TSE Gold 100. Also responsible for international business development and brand extension strategies, he successfully launched World of Concrete Latin America in Mexico City in 2004, World of Concrete India in 2013, World of Concrete Europe in 2015 and World of Concrete Asia in 2017.
Cindric was instrumental in leading Informa’s acquisition of WWETT from Cole Publishing, Hanley Wood’s acquisition of Construct (formerly the CSI show) and the TFM Show, as well as overseeing the integration of Hanley Wood’s first management contract for the AIA’s National Convention and Design Exposition. As an active IAEE and SISO member, he is a frequent speaker at industry events. Cindric is also a Show Manager of the Year Award recipient and contributor to IAEE’s The Art of the Show: An Introduction to the Study of Exhibition Management textbook.
As 2019 IAEE Chairperson, Cindric will focus on the changing trade show model, increasing IAEE’s global presence, and the expansion of IAEE’s CEM Learning Program and Women’s Initiatives.
Robert “Bob” McLean, Jr., CPA, CAE
Executive Vice President
Promotional Products Association International (PPAI)
Robert (Bob) McLean is PPAI’s Executive Vice President. He was hired in June 2008 as chief financial officer and is responsible for finance and administration, information technology and the Promotional Products Education Foundation. In October 2011, Bob was promoted to EVP and now oversees PPAI’s tradeshow and membership departments.
Convention News Television (CNTV)
Carrie and her business partner, Marcelo Zolessi, co-founded Convention News Television (CNTV) in 2007 after seeing a need for digital content and live production in the tradeshow industry. Now, the company produces live content and video highlights for more than sixty clients annually. CNTV also partners with IAEE, PCMA, IMEX, Association Forum of Chicagoland, TSNN and Tradeshow Executive to produce video content and live coverage of industry events throughout the year.
Carrie has an extensive background in broadcast journalism and management. She spent eleven years at the NBC affiliate in Orlando as newscast producer, executive producer, and senior executive producer. Now, Carrie is entrenched in the exhibitions and events industry. She volunteers her time and energy to projects that forward the industry, including Exhibitions Day and the Exhibitions Mean Business campaign.
She is married and has three children.
Daniel McKinnon, CEM
Executive Vice President, Exhibitions and Events
Material Handling Industry (MHI)
Daniel McKinnon, CEM, is committed to the exhibitions and events industry and works tirelessly to promote the benefits of face-to-face interaction. He previously worked at FreemanXP after 23 years in various show management roles. As Vice President of Global Client Solutions, he was tasked with facilitating the smart, sustainable growth of FreemanXP’s international products and programs. Daniel was focused on helping the enterprises’ customers grow their events and business by orchestrating FreemanXP’s extensive global resources.
Daniel also previously worked as Vice President of Government Events at 1105 Media. In addition, he served as Executive Vice President of Messe Frankfurt, Inc., with management and oversight responsibility for the company’s international trade shows and business development efforts in North America. Daniel has also served as Executive Director of International Development for AmericasMart Atlanta, Inc., and was International Marketing Director at SEMCO Productions, both of Atlanta. He is a graduate of Presbyterian College, in Clinton, South Carolina.
Antonio Manuel Brito, CEM, CMP
Newevents, Organizacao de Feiras e Eventos, Lda
António Manuel Brito started Portugal’s activity in the exhibitions and events industry almost 25 years ago. He has directed and organized more than 50 trade shows throughout his career as well as several international conferences worldwide.
Recognized internationally, Antonio Manuel Brito develops events as the International Consultant in Management and Marketing of Exhibitions and Events for several companies engaged in the organization and/or participation in exhibitions and events. He is currently the only IAEE accredited European to serve as CEM Faculty and has taught several CEM Learning Program courses, contributing to the CEM Certification of several professionals around the world.
Group Vice President
LaunchPad, Reed Exhibitions
As Group Vice President for Reed Exhibitions, 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 Reed Exhibitions, 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.
Julie Coker Graham
President & CEO
Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (SMG)
Julie Coker Graham is the President and CEO of the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) where she oversees all of the organization’s departments and operational duties. Prior to being named to this position she served as the Senior Vice President of Convention Sales and managed a staff of 25 sales and services professionals at the PHLCVB responsible for selling the expanded Pennsylvania Convention Center and Philadelphia’s hotel package to customers across the country.
Coker Graham was named chair of Mayor Jim Kenney’s transition team for the Democratic National Convention preparation. In addition, she serves on the board of Center City District and has been appointed to the 2016 board of the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce and the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia. She is also on the board of two of the tourism industry’s top associations – the U.S. Travel Association and Destination Marketing Association International. Plus, she is a member of the Philadelphia Chapter of Links, Incorporated. She served as first Vice Chair for the Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association (GPHA) as well as a board member with Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (now Visit Philadelphia), Independence Visitors Center Corporation, Girls, Inc. Philadelphia region, and Boy Scouts of America Cradle of Liberty Council. She is a past secretary and board member of the Illinois Hospitality and Lodging Association (IHLA) and past board member of the Oak Brook, Illinois Economic Development Committee. She served as Chairman of the American Hotel and Lodging Association’s Women in Lodging Networking Group (WIL).
Executive Vice President
Chuck Grouzard is Executive Vice President of Exhibition Sales at GES. With over 25 years of industry experience, he is not only a veteran, but knows his stuff. He enjoys leading the exhibition sales team on a day to day basis with new and exciting tactics. He’s worked with various types of clients and is always up for a challenge!
Kimberly Hardcastle-Geddes, CEM
President and Chief Account Strategist
As Owner, President and Chief Marketing Strategist of the nation’s leading marketing and public relations agency specializing in B2B events, Hardcastle-Geddes and her team provide solutions that increase attendance and exhibitor participation for several of the largest and most successful trade shows and conferences in the country.
Kimberly has worked in both the United States and Europe, holds an MSBA with an emphasis in Marketing and has 20 years of industry experience. She is an IAEE Krakoff Leaders Institute alumna, the editor of mdg’s trade show marketing newsletter, a presenter of industry seminars on strategic market planning and is a recipient of IAEE’s Educator of the Year Award and Trade Show Executive’s Marketing Genius Award. With offices in Southern California and Washington, D.C., she is also a frequent cross-country traveler.
Buffy Levy has worked at SmithBucklin for more than twenty-five years, producing both trade and consumer shows in a variety of industries. Currently she serves as show director for the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers (NAFEM) as well as the International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE), two of SmithBucklin’s largest Outsourced Services clients and both Gold 100 and TSNN Top 250 events. Buffy’s emphasis on client stewardship has resulted in exceptional outcomes for the organizations she serves. Her focus on event strategy, financial management, show operations and customer satisfaction have resulted in both revenue growth and cost-savings for her clients’ events. She is an enthusiastic role model and mentor within the Event Services unit at SmithBucklin, and has initiated many innovations and process improvements that directly impact SmithBucklin clients in a positive way.
Buffy holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Michigan. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons, knitting and following the Chicago Cubs.
Staff Vice President Global Expositions
International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)
SVP Event Planning & Operations
National Association of Broadcasters (NAB)
Justine McVaney is responsible for all event planning, budget management, logistical operations and customer service programs of NAB’s events and conventions.
Since joining the NAB convention department in 1994, she has held various management positions in the department and was promoted to her current leadership position as Senior Vice President for Event Planning and Operations in 2011.
Justine is active in the trade show industry. From 2000 – 2003, she served on the IAEM (International Association of Exposition Managers) DC Chapter Board of Directors and in 2004 was named one of the Next Generation of Leaders by Tradeshow Week magazine. Justine is currently a member of the Maritz Advisory Board, vice chair of the Major American Trade Show Organizer Council, and past chair of the IAEE Senior Executive Education Forum.
Justine is a graduate of the University of Virginia with a Bachelor of the Arts in American Government. She resides in Arlington, Virginia with her husband Jim and their son James.
Yulita Osuba, CMP
Orange County Convention Center (OCCC)
Yulita has over 30 years in the hospitality industry and been in management at the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) for more than sixteen years. She is a natural leader and seasoned professional in the industry, having served in senior sales management positions at the Daytona Beach Convention Center and the Tampa Convention Center. Yulita oversees the following divisions within the OCCC: Sales, Marketing, Event Management & Exhibitor Services, Information Technology and Security.
President & CEO
Messe Frankfurt North America
Dennis is currently serving as President of Messe Frankfurt North America and is based in Atlanta, Georgia. 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.
Having worked in the industry since 1992, Dennis has been directly responsible for organizing more than 250 different international events and is considered a unique exhibition specialist in a multitude of industries including automotive, manufacturing, ICT, food, textiles and construction. He has held executive positions in marketing, sales, business development and executive management at several major exhibition companies in Europe and in the U.S.
Born in Colorado and having served in the U.S. Army, Dennis has an MBA in International Business and is highly experienced in facilitating trade in developing markets outside the U.S. to include the BRIC and MIST countries.
Dennis is married with two children and currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia.
Janet Sperstad, CMP
Program Director, Meeting and Event Management
Madison Area Technical College
Janet Sperstad’s professional history reflects her lifelong vocation: driving excellence in meeting and event management execution and education. She has dedicated her career to defining the competencies and career pathways that articulate meeting planning as a design discipline – separate and distinct from hospitality – requiring skills in the social sciences, executive leadership, and the cognitive sciences.
Her contributions are global in scope and rooted in over 25 years as a meeting professional and executive leader in the corporate and non-profit sectors. Janet has been employed by a Fortune 500 global company, a statewide association, and owned a professional event management firm.
Janet currently leads Madison College’s Meeting and Event Management Associate degree program, which she founded in 2002. This award-winning program is recognized for its stringent requirements that faculty demonstrate direct meeting planning experience and credentials; the program currently offers the most number of meeting and event management credits in the United States and has served as a model for other programs at colleges and universities in North America and Europe.