2019 Hall of Fame


2019 Hall of Fame

Congratulations to the 2019 Women in Events Hall of Fame Inductees! 

Courtney Stanley The Trailblazer: Brad Weaber, principal at Brad Weaber Consulting Group, LLC, is the Founder and Principal of the Brad Weaber Consulting Group, a firm focused on professional board and panel facilitation as well as management efficiencies and event strategy review for all market segments. Weaber's meeting and event experience comes from every facet of the meetings industry where he served most recently as Chief Operating Officer for Connections Housing, a leading provider of event and housing management to some of the largest events in North America in every market segment—association, government, corporate and sports. 

Weaber is active with ASAE, IAEE and PCMA; has served on advisory boards for cities and hotel properties including Marriott, Hilton, Omni and the cities of Las Vegas, Washington, DC, Vancouver and many more as well as a featured speaker at industry events. He is a frequent trade publication contributor and industry expert quoted in both the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

Annette Gregg

The Coach: Sharon Bonner, founder & CEO of Bright Ideas Events Ltd., is an industry pioneer full of ideas, who forged her way independently through the event business during the 1980’s. With over 3,000 events under her belt, she has very interesting stories to tell and a wealth of experience and knowledge to share. Sharon has propelled Bright Ideas Events Ltd. as a driving force, garnering 19 industry awards and 32 nominations for its work.

A combination of natural talent, skills development and professional experience gives Sharon the essential skill set to deliver the memorable corporate events that have made Bright Ideas Ltd. the award-winning industry leader that it is today.

Carole McKellar

Woman of Influence: Marin Bright, founder & CEO of Smart Meetings, is the founder and CEO of Smart Meetings. She directs Smart Meetings’ award-winning magazine, digital operations, events and site-selector business. Marin has extensive experience in the publishing, meetings and hospitality industries, and many of her innovations have become industry standards. Marin had the vision of creating Smart Meetings as a consumer-friendly magazine for the trade. She also established the original high-end networking events that feature superior educational sessions and one-on-one meetings between premier suppliers and planners.

In recognition of her long list of achievements and passion for the meetings industry, Marin has received numerous awards, including: The PCMA Legend Award for significant contributions to the meetings industry, the Western Publishing Association Distinction in Leadership Award for outstanding representation in the media industry and from the prestigious Folio awards, with which Marin twice received the “Top Women in Media” national award.

Sabrina Millet-Kanabar Emerging Leader: Stacey Thorp, executive director of conferences & events at Freeman, is a seasoned veteran in the world of creating brand experiences. She brings with her years of experience in bringing her clients’ marketing goals to life through a variety of media. She has worked with small boutique agencies as well as large global agencies, for both corporate and association clients.

From her roots in entertainment, logistics and marketing communications management, executing advertising, PR and marketing campaigns, she jumped into producing experiential marketing initiatives – with a focus on live events – for clients with a great understanding of the ‘why’ behind the ‘what.' For Stacey, there is nothing better than connecting people and ideas together to bring brand experiences that go beyond the expected.

Jon'll BoydOrganizational Leadership: KiKi L'Italien, CEO of Amplified Growth and chief growth officer and host of Association Chat, helps people connect with each other to build communities and ideas. She combined 16 years in branding and marketing strategy with 10 years as the leader for an online community called Association Chat to create Tribes and Trust, a purposeful model for communities and our role in them.

Today, KiKi researches the science of community and the role of trust. She is a strategist and keynote speaker who consults with companies and nonprofits on how to build stronger communities that last. 

The 2019 Inductees were announced via Facebook Live on the AWE Facebook Page on July 30, 2019. View and share the announcement here.

AWE was thrilled to launch its Hall of Fame Recognition Program in 2017, hosted by the AWE Awards Committee. The AWE Awards Committee was formed with a vision to create an engaged group of recognized people and programs that exemplify AWE values to serve as an ongoing resource for inspiration, guidance and leadership. Find more details here.