Roy B. Evans, Jr., Influential Former PCMA Head, Dies

Blog > Industry News

Roy B. Evans, Jr., Influential Former PCMA Head, Dies

By Michael Pinchera | Jul 10, 2019

Longtime Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) president and CEO and industry icon Roy B. Evans, Jr., passed away on July 9, following a long illness.

Evans led the association from 1975-2000 as president and president/CEO. Active in the industry since the 1960s, recognized with most of the profession’s major awards and honors, including being inducted into the Event Industry Council Hall of Leaders in 1993, Roy’s legacy is undeniable.

David R. Evans, a retired senior vice president for Starwood Hotels and Resorts, described Roy to Convene as the industry’s first leader to bridge the gap between planners and suppliers, and explained how the former CEO’s vision led to the creation of the PCMA Foundation. During his tenure, membership grew tenfold.

David DuBois, CMP, CAE, FASAE, CTA, president and CEO of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE), stepped into Roy’s large shoes in PCMA leadership in 2000.

"Roy was a visionary, a wonderful father-husband-employer-friend and we will truly miss his southern charm,” DuBois said.

By all accounts, Roy B. Evans, Jr., CAE, helped shape the meeting and event industry in which we all thrive today. The Hall of Leaders entry explains Roy’s most-significant contribution as his dedication to growing the landscape of professional education in the industry. It’s appropriate and a suitable honor that the association’s largest scholarship, earmarked for student tuition, carries Roy’s name.

“From my first introduction to Roy in the early 1980s, when I was just a kid in the business and really brought nothing to the table, Roy treated me with the same respect and deference that he would give to the most senior people in the industry,” said Kitty Ratcliffe, president of Explore St. Louis and a former chair of the MPI International Board of Directors. “That always amazed me. He had a wry sense of humor and an ability to connect with anyone, and, of course, that served him well as he grew PCMA from a small organization of medical meeting planners to a major force in the meetings industry. He had vision and drive, and made things happen, at the same time always being approachable and collaborative. The industry has lost one of its pioneers, and I will miss him.”

In a statement, current PCMA President and CEO Sherrif Karamat, said, “Roy Evans was a beloved pioneer and a visionary who provided the framework that makes PCMA the global leader in the business events industry today. We are forever grateful for his dedication to PCMA, our industry and profession, and will miss him dearly.”

Watch the Hall of Leaders video about Roy B. Evans, Jr.



Michael Pinchera

Michael Pinchera is an award-winning writer and editor for The Meeting Professional as well as a speaker, technologist and contributor to business, academic and pop culture publications since 1997. Read more of his work at