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Member Spotlight - Chris Dingley

Member Spotlight

By: Elodie Lortal, CMP, DES | Dec 2, 2021

Name and designations: Chris Dingley  
Position: Freelance Event Coordinator & Assistant 
Employer: Contact Event Hub

Contact information:
Linked In: Chris Dingley


Why did you decide to join MPI Ottawa?
I decided to join MPI Ottawa because I live in the city. When I heard about the Chapter I immediately thought: “I had to look into that”. My professors and mentors were very encouraging about me joining the association, especially my mentor Rebecca Trafford. When I was asking her how to get my feet wet and how to get into Ottawa’s events scene, she told me: “don’t underestimate how powerful the connections are in the events industry”. The Chapter provides valuable resources, webinars, and networking events to help you thrive in the events’ world.

What do you like the most about MPI Ottawa?
What I’ve loved the most has been how the members have reached out to me as a new member. I know I am in the events industry, but I can be shy or intimidated when approaching people more experienced than me. The feeling of being very welcomed has been the biggest gift so far. The association doesn’t have a huge hierarchy where you are intimidated to reach out to people. Instead, members have already connected with me. We are so alone right now. I haven’t even seen my professors or classmates in-person, so feeling welcomed and part of a community feels good.

How did you get where you are today?
Mostly by trial and error. I have tried to do a bunch of other things but they didn’t work out. I needed to find something that would allow me to keep growing, learning, and helping. Having that creative aspect to a career was crucial to me. Part of how I fell into the events world was just taking a chance. Honestly, the way I found out about the Events Management Program at Algonquin College is because event management students came to the party supply store I used to work for, to see if we would sponsor or give something for their event. A lot of it has been seeing opportunities and taking a chance. Being open-minded, curious and, more importantly, being willing to take a leap of faith. I kept repeating to myself, “even if it doesn’t work, it I will be okay”.

What makes you good at what you do? 
I know how to research, and I know how to ask questions. I know I need to figure out what I don’t know, but I can go and find out: how to do a task? how to use a tool? Being a mix between curious, creative and strategic makes me good at what I do.

In a post-COVID19 world, is there anything you would change about our industry? 
I think the use of technology has opened so many doors. I really want to see the digital lessons we are learning about accessibility, environmental impact and wealth disparities (not everyone has a computer they can access, a stable internet connection, a quiet space) to stay when in-person events return. We take the realities we live in with us on the digital space, and we’ve been able to see that for the first time. These lessons help us to adapt, to grow and to become more inclusive. I would love to see a change in the way we are thinking about live events, to include all kinds of people.

Last words 
It would be a thank you to all the people who’ve taught me along the way. Not just my teachers but my friends, my classmates, and complete strangers too.

Article edited by Article edited by Cynthia Beaudin | LinkedIn, Canada Foundation for Innovation



EL Headshot
Elodie Lortal, CMP, DES
Catering Coordinator at National Arts Centre

📢 I am a bilingual meetings and events coordinator who helps clients and organizations to plan their events in one of our five unique meeting spaces. The National Arts Centre is an ideal Ottawa venue for virtual, hybrid, or in-person events.


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