We’re a Resilient Community

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We’re a Resilient Community

By Paul Van Deventer | Apr 8, 2020

“Sometimes our light goes out, but is blown again into instant flame by an encounter with another human being.” -Albert Schweitzer

Today our industry and our world are undergoing challenging times due to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). We are facing a global crisis that has affected our families, friends, businesses, communities and colleagues. This crisis is not like any we have ever seen, and it’s once again the resiliency of our community that continues to amaze me.

Through natural disasters, economic crises or terrorist attacks, we have come together, we have supported each other and we have persevered. This crisis will be no different.

In this time of uncertainty, I’m focused first and foremost on my family, MPI, our staff, community and each of you.

In this time of uncertainty, I’m focused first and foremost on my family, MPI, our staff, community and each of you. As we make our way through this difficult time rest assured that we will be stronger together. To persevere and maintain hope we must band together and remain vigilant and strong in the face of adversity. When you get down, turn to your faith, family, friends and community for support. And be sensitive to those who are looking for a sign of support. Take a moment to reach out.

MPI is here for you during this crisis. We will continue to provide you the platforms and tools needed to interact and support each other. Whether it be online chats, informative podcasts, virtual chapter gatherings, online education or the latest industry news, MPI is your trusted resource.

Related Webinar: Coronavirus Dialogue Series - Space to Re-Think

We know you have questions about the state of our industry, the future of meetings and events and how you will be impacted. While I am not in a position to answer them now, I take comfort in looking to the past and seeing how MPI has endured and grown stronger throughout our 48 years in response to previous crises. And I can assure you that the MPI International Board of Directors, your MPI staff and I are committed to ushering MPI through this crisis. MPI is here to support future generations of meeting professionals.

As we navigate this global situation, we are optimistically pushing forward with plans for our annual World Education Congress (WEC) in Grapevine, Texas, June 6-9. We believe that this may be the first key event in our industry where we come together face-to-face as a community to reunite, reconnect and restart. But we are also keenly aware that the situation is unprecedented and very fluid, changing by the moment, so we will adapt and adjust as necessary, but always with you and the future of MPI top of mind.

Although we don’t know what the future has in store, I do not doubt that as we work together to rebuild and revitalize our industry, we will become stronger than we were before.

And as we find our pathway to recovery, it will be quite evident that this community, as we have in the past, will fuel global economic growth, innovation and stability. Indeed, it will become evident that when we meet, we change the world.

Paul Van Deventer
MPI President and CEO pvandeventer@mpi.org
Follow me on Twitter @MPICEOPaul



Paul Van Deventer
President & Chief Executive Officer at Meeting Professionals International

Paul Van Deventer joined the MPI Global Team in April 2013 as President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO). In this role, he leads the strategic direction of both MPI’s global association and the MPI Foundation, with responsibility for managing its global staff, operating budget, membership programs and community services.