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MEA elects new chair and three new board members

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MEA elects new chair and three new board members
Meetings and Events Australia (MEA) members have chosen three new faces to add to the association’s board, alongside a new chair.

The three vacant places, created by board retirements, are being filled by members from parts of the industry that were not previously represented at board level.

Managing director of team building powerhouse Be Challenged, Oliver Sheer, Benjamin Ferry, director of commercial for IHG Hotels and Resorts’ Premium and Essentials brands in Australasia and the Pacific, general manager of Sydney Prop Specialists, Craig Watson, are the three new board members.

The board remains with a slight majority female representation, with members remaining on the board including Megan Peters from Lateral Event Management, Vanessa Green from Cliftons Events Solutions, Emma McDowell from Saxton Speakers Bureau, Thomas Staunton from SoldOut Events and Alicia Thomas from Royal International Convention Centre.

Michael Firman from Harry the hirer, Paul Davison from Sydney Masonic Centre and Mike Schrafft from VMS Event and Conference Logistics are all departing the board, with Firman vacating the chair’s position.

Green from Cliftons Events Solutions is taking over the chair role from Firman.

“I am honoured and delighted to assume the role of Chair of MEA,” said Green.

“It is with deep appreciation that I extend my gratitude to the outgoing directors, Michael Firman, Paul Davison, and Mike Schrafft, for their invaluable contributions to MEA and the events industry.”

“Michael Firman and Paul Davison have dedicated five and three years respectively to the MEA Board, serving with exemplary commitment during challenging times. Michael’s leadership as chair for the past two years and Paul’s diligent work as treasurer have not only steered the association but also provided a wealth of ideas, thought leadership, and hands-on support.

“I also sincerely thank Mike Schrafft, a seasoned industry veteran, for his valuable insights and dedicated service.”

“As we bid farewell to these exceptional individuals, I am excited to welcome our three new directors…who join the MEA board for 2024,” said Green.

“Their diverse backgrounds and expertise in various sectors of the events industry bring a fresh perspective to our board.

“The events industry is continually evolving, and MEA is committed to playing a pivotal role in its growth. We focus on leadership, empowerment and connection opportunities for our members. In the dynamic landscape of today, the MEA Board for 2024 is well-equipped to represent and support our unique and diverse membership.”

This article was updated to reflect that the new members of the board represent sectors not previously represented at board level.

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