January 2021 Print

President's Report

 Board Elections 

The Arizona Chapter of the Society of Government Meeting Professionals is looking for leaders!

Nominations are now being accepted for all eight elected positions on the 2021-2023 Arizona Chapter Board of Directors. The incoming chapter board shall be sworn in during the chapter meeting/event nearest to, but before July 1, 2021. The terms of office will run from July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2023.

If you wish to be considered as a candidate, or wish to nominate someone else, the nomination form and information on the nominations & elections process may be found at The nomination form is also be emailed to you. The nominations period will remain open until March 12, 2021, 5:00pm Pacific Time. 

The chapter’s Nominations & Elections Committee is responsible for arranging and overseeing the chapter elections process. Should you have any additional questions, contact Sarah Goodell, the committee chair, at 602.542.0163 or by email at [email protected]

Any chapter member in good standing for at least six months (in the category noted below) prior to nomination shall qualify for nomination to and election on the chapter board of directors:

President  (Government Planner or Contract Planner)

First Vice President (Government Planner or Contract Planner)

Second Vice President   (Supplier)

Secretary (Government Planner or Contract Planner)

Treasurer (Supplier or Contract Planner)

Directors (3): 
(1) Government Planner
(1) Supplier
(1) Government Planner, Contract Planner, or Supplier

Nominations & elections process deadlines this year are:

Chapter nominations close by 3/12/21

Chapter online voting* opens on 3/25/21

Chapter membership online voting closes on 3/31/21

Chapter election results announced to chapter by 4/2/21

New chapter board members installed by 6/30/21

Code of Ethics form (signed by all new chapter board members) must be received at SGMP HQ by 7/31/21

*Retired Members do not vote.

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Welcome New Members

Welcome to  Donald Harvey at the new Venue 8600 in Scottsdale

Jacqueline Dankha at the Delta Hotel by Marriott in Mesa

Mila Perez at the Dept of Education 

Alesia Stanley at USDA

Carrie Vieth, CMP at Rainmakers Strategic Solutions 



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Save the Date...

Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021 at 11:30 am to 1:00 pm

Program:  Blended Meeting Solutions:  A Strategy for the Long Term

Presenter:   Dave Ryder, MBA, Veer Consulting

Assuming a very conservative and safe posture in conference and event management is the smartest strategy until such time as we successfully curtail the spread of the current pandemic through science, medicine, and compliance with directives.  Part of this conservative approach includes successful blended solutions to accommodate the restrictions imposed by federal medical directives, organizations and even personal preference.  Migrating from on-site events and conferences to a non-negotiable virtual option showed us market limitations and personal resilience, but does not satisfy the social component inherent in gatherings.  Are we resolved to find solutions that accommodate a vast cross-section of expectations in the industry?  Let’s examine some options that are quickly evolving that offer collateral benefits that speak to safety, cost savings, technical flexibility, creative growth and mitigation of liability.

5 skills/take-aways from this session:

  1. Attendees will identify existing and potential ways to blend production solutions to serve multiple audiences.
  2. Attendees will learn how to create partnerships to offer a series of blended solutions.
  3. Attendees will learn critical elements of blended solutions to produce a successful event or conference.
  4. Attendees will learn to evaluate blended solutions from various perspectives including client organization, attendee and vendors.

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Membership Special




STAY CONNECTED: To insure you continue receiving communication from SGMP, please make sure your profile, including an alternate email address, is up-to-date at Member Login on the website. 

 40th Anniversary Membership Rates
To celebrate SGMP’s 40th Anniversary coming up in 2021, we are offering special membership rates from now until June 30, 2021, for new and renewal memberships:

  • $45 for government planners (compared to regular rate of $55)
  • $115 for contract planners (compared to regular rate of $140)
  • Supplier annual membership rate is $350, compared to the regular rate of $400.
  • Sign up online at and pay online!

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Newsletters (PDF)

As the events industry struggles to get back on its feet in 2021, looming Covid-19-related logistical and safety requirements add challenges to the recovery. 

“If event planners' method of securing a fairly well-written liability release is in play, parties, concerts and conventions are looking a little better in 2021,” said Ryan Paules, founder at Radar Promotions in Los Angeles, Calif. However, he adds, “no event insurance policy covers infectious or communicable diseases to my knowledge, and these are always limited to an additional endorsement at an additional premium price. Event operators need to review the included coverages and, more specifically, the excluded coverages for their policies.”

The good news? There are ways to secure solid event protection — with the following issues at the top of planners' “must know” list.


Event-Insurance Trends


Tougher insurance limits. “Because of this year's economic strike, insurers must brace for the harsh market conditions in 2021, with minimal growth and higher premiums on the table,” said Eliza Davies, insurance industry specialist at Cogneesol, in New York City. “Insurers would likely err on the side of caution in 2021, implementing new coverage limits and applying new terms and conditions to policies to ensure that any future further waves of Covid-19 do not strike them too hard.”

Higher prices – but better support, too. Event managers can expect larger premiums this year, but they should get more support from insurers over the short-term — at least until business conditions fully recover. 

“Yes, higher prices may be par for the course, but insurers will undoubtedly double their efforts to add value and ensure that as premiums increase, consumers do not move away,” Davies said.

More responsibility for safety will be expected of event planners, leading to higher costs for gatherings. Insurers might require more health-and-safety components to be in place at meetings because of lessons learned in 2020. 

“That might include new apps to verify attendees have been vaccinated, utilizing multiple spaces to eliminate overcrowding, changes in food-and-beverage service that will remain long after Covid-19,” said Greg Jenkins, a partner at Bravo Productions, in Long Beach, Calif. “You’ll also see that actual medical staff and experts will be required at the onset of planning a large gathering, meeting or convention to ensure public-health guidelines are intact.”

Vaccination mandates and other requirements could be implemented. “There will be more components and layers needed to an event because of the pandemic,” Jenkins noted. “That might include new apps to verify attendees have been vaccinated, utilizing multiple spaces to eliminate overcrowding, and safety-based changes in food-and-beverage service that will remain long after COVID-19 has left the stage.”

A sharper focus on understanding what’s covered. Meeting planners need to read insurance policies carefully. Nobody knows how long the pandemic will go on, or when the limits imposed by state, federal and local public-health officials will be lifted. Your in-person event, said Paules, no matter how far ahead it has been planned, still might need to be cancelled because of local, state or federal restrictions. Does your coverage specify such reasons for cancellation? If the event is still taking place, what is the language of your liability coverage?


A Path Forward


What else should planners be preparing for, insurancewise, in what might still be a chaotic year?

For starters, insurance policies and force majeure clauses in contracts are being discussed nonstop between clients and vendors, industry experts say. That likely means a shift in coverage strategies.

“We have all learned the limits of insurance as it relates to lost revenue,” said Catherine Chaulet, president and CEO of Global DMC Partners of Boston and Washington, D.C. “Most of the companies that benefited from insurance around Covid had specific language on communicable diseases and business continuity.”

This wording started to disappear, as insurance companies excluded Coronavirus from new policies as soon as the World Health Organization declared Covid-19 as a worldwide emergency. “Since then, we’ve been recommending that clients look into other types of insurance, such as business-interruption or business-continuity policies," Chaulet added.

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Special Report

 Due to COVID-19 we are working from home, from other email addresses and in home offices.  Please send us your personal email address, so we can stay CONNECTED. 

Membership Assistance During COVID-19 

The National Board has approved a membership has reduced fees and made 6 month membership available. If you are unable to pay your dues by your membership renewal date, your membership will go into a grace period of 90 days. 

However, if you are still able to do so, we ask that you continue to renew your membership before your expiration date. If you have questions on your renewal dates or payment options, please contact us at [email protected]


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