When you hear the words The PPAI Expo, what memories pop into your mind?

Is it the sound of the casino as you make your way to the show floor? The fall you almost had on those terrible cobblestones (maybe that was just me)? The buzz of electricity you feel as you walk through the show doors on the first day? The hug from that old friend you haven’t seen since the last Expo?

Recently, I had the opportunity to meet with a group of distributors, suppliers and service providers to talk about what makes The PPAI Expo so important to them and to our industry. Their answers clearly showed that Expo is an important member value and key to our industry’s culture. Here’s a snapshot of what I heard:

The PPAI Expo is the glue that holds the industry together.

This is a relationship industry. The PPAI Expo is key to expanding networks and building upon existing relationships.

Coming back from Las Vegas with fresh ideas and a burst of creative energy is a great way to start the new year.

No one does it like PPAI. The timing, venue and attendance lead the way in our industry.

Having an industry-leading event like this does not happen by accident. I have had the privilege of serving as your PPAI Board of Directors Chair this year and have seen first-hand the incredible amount of work and dedication the Association staff puts into The PPAI Expo. They sweat the finest of details to make sure members have the best experience possible. Everything they do is centered around the Association’s mission and vision:

Our vision is that promotional products are universally valued and essential to every brand.

Our mission is to be the force and the voice to advance the promotional marketplace for the benefit of our community.

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate PPAI President and CEO Dale Denham and the team for the results they have driven home this year. They have shown incredible tenacity and resilience during an extremely difficult period for organizations relying on trade shows as a central source of revenue.

PPAI is poised to wrap up the year in a terrific financial position, with foundations in place for initiatives that will continue to move the mission and vision forward in the future.

In closing, I would also like to thank PPAI members for their support of the Association and its board. Whether it is volunteering for a committee, serving on the board, writing letters to government representatives for a legislative push, attending PPAI events or exhibiting, it is only through your continued commitment that this organization survives and thrives.

It has been my pleasure to serve. I look forward to continuing to advocate for the industry that has served many of us so well.

See you in Vegas!