IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum was held in conjunction with the Events Industry Council’s Sustainable Event Professional Certificate programme at CMP Conclave, 14-15 November 2019

A special sustainability-focused version of the IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum took place at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, CO, USA.

This year, students in their graduating year of an events or hospitality industry college or university programme were invited to participate in the Events Industry Council’s (EIC) Sustainable Event Professional Certificate programme. Students received 8 hours of continuing education credits towards Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) certification or recertification.

The programme was free for students to participate. Students were responsible for any travel costs.


Thursday, 14 November

2:00 p.m.             Welcome | Dale Hudson and Mariela McIlwraith

2:15 p.m.             Introduction to sustainable events | Mariela McIlwraith

3:00 p.m.             Creating a sustainable event plan | Mariela McIlwraith and Lindsay Arell

3:30 p.m.             Supply chain management | Mariela McIlwraith and Lindsay Arell

4:00 p.m.             Sustainable event priortisation model | Yalmaz Siddiqui

5:30 p.m.             End of day one

Friday, 15 November

8:00 a.m.             Breakfast available

9:00 a.m.             Sustainable food and beverage | Mariela McIlwraith and Courtney Lohmann

10:00 a.m.           Materials management | Lindsay Arell

10:30 a.m.           Sustainable exhibitions | Lindsay Arell

11:00 a.m.           Measurement and reporting | Lindsay Arell

12:00 p.m.          Lunch break

1:00 p.m.             Creating welcoming events | Mariela McIlwraith and Courtney Lohmann

2:00 p.m.             Social responsibility | Mariela McIlwraith and Michelle Guelbart

2:30 p.m.             Legal considerations | Tyra Hilliard

3:00 p.m.             Financial management | Mariela McIlwraith

3:30 p.m.             Wrap up discussion |Dale Hudson and Mariela McIlwraith

4:30 p.m.             CMP Conclave opening session

6:00 p.m.             Conclusion of programme


  • Lindsay Arell, Principal, Honeycomb Strategies
  • Michelle Guelbart, Director of Private Sector Engagement, ECPAT USA
  • Dale Hudson, Knowledge and Events Director, IMEX Group
  • Tyra Hilliard, Esq, PhD, CMP
  • Courtney Lohmann, CMP, Director of Culture, PRA South Florida, Chair, EIC Sustainability Committee
  • Mariela McIlwraith, CMP, CMM, MBA, Director of Industry Advancement, Events Industry Council
  • Yalmaz Siddiqui, VP Sustainability, MGM Resorts

IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum Overview

The IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum is a year-round programme which is jointly run by IMEX Group, Meeting Professionals International (MPI) and MCI Group.

Final year students studying meetings and conventions, tourism or hospitality at a university or college are invited to attend the Forum. Forums typically take place as part of a larger meetings industry conference or trade show in 12 or more locations around the world every year.

Over 150 forums have taken place globally since 2003 with more than 7,500 students participating in the forums to date. Over 95% of participants have said they are more likely to enter the industry as a result of the Future Leaders Forum.

The focus of the forums is to provide students with current industry perspectives and knowledge from active meeting professionals as well as provide high quality networking opportunities. The forums also provide the students with knowledge and tools that will help them in their transition from academic education to professional life.

All forums provide opportunities for the future leaders to:

  • Gain an international perspective on the global meetings industry
  • Overview of meetings and events industry career opportunities
  • First-hand advice from meeting and event professionals
  • Hear inspirational career stories and case studies
  • Engaging session by industry experts on key topics (for example: sustainability, technology, online and offline networking, industry trends, business etiquette and personal branding)
  • Career-focused networking opportunities
  • Showcase their skills and talents

Click here to learn more about the IMEX-MPI-MCI Future Leaders Forum. You can also connect with the Future Leaders Forum community on Facebook.