2020 Fall Conference

Wednesday, September 30 - Thursday, October 1
Greater Richmond Convention Center
Hilton Richmond Downtown

This is Virginia's premier tradeshow for association executives, professional meeting planners, and others who are involved with holding meetings or events. Over 100 exhibitors from across the region are featured, and education includes a workshop, breakout educational sessions, and a keynote speaker. See below for a look at what the 2019 Fall Conference offered.

Registration Opens June 2020


Join VSAE October 2-3 at the Greater Richmond Convention Center and Hilton Richmond Downtown for Virginia's premier tradeshow for association executives, professional meeting planners, and others who are involved with holding meetings or events. New this year is a 2.5-hour workshop on Wednesday before the networking reception. Thursday's activities begin with an enlightening keynote presentation, "Beyond the Brand - Putting People First" by Karen McCullough. Breakout session topics include digital marketing strategy, coaching your speakers and volunteers for better engagement, managing employee pay, keeping up with change, rewarding employee performance, and the art of business etiquette leading to success. Regardless of your job title, this event will help you deliver more value to your meeting attendees, to your customers, and to your members.

Multiple registration options are available, all of which include the tradeshow with lunch. See registration section below. The tradeshow has over 100 exhibitors representing meeting facilities and other industry-related businesses throughout the Commonwealth.

CAE Hours: 6.25 (Wednesday workshop + Thursday sessions)

List of Exhibitors

Booth Prizes

 Use the links below to see all the other opportunities this event has to offer.



2:00 p.m. - Registration Opens
2:30-5:00 p.m. - Workshop at the Hilton Richmond Downtown
5:30-7:00 p.m. - Networking Reception at the Hilton Richmond Downtown


8:00 a.m.  Registration Opens
8:30-9:45 a.m.  Breakfast & Keynote Presentation
10:00-11:30 a.m.  Morning Breakout Sessions
11:45 a.m.-2:00 p.m.  Tradeshow with Lunch
12:15-1:30 p.m.  Attendee Lunch in Exhibit Hall
2:00-3:30 p.m.  Afternoon Breakout Sessions

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Attendees must be association executives, professional meeting planners, or others who are involved with holding meetings or events.
Suppliers/Associate Members may attend only as an exhibitor for the tradeshow portion and do not qualify to attend the conference portion (see Exhibitor Information link above).
Non-exhibiting suppliers may not attend.
  • FULL - Wednesday, October 2: workshop and networking reception; Thursday, October 3: breakfast with keynote, both breakout sessions, tradeshow with lunch, and free parking at GRCC.
  • WEDNESDAY ONLY - Wednesday, October 2: workshop and networking reception.
  • MORNING - Thursday, October 3: breakfast with keynote, morning breakout session, tradeshow with lunch, and free parking at GRCC.
  • AFTERNOONThursday, October 3: tradeshow with lunch, afternoon breakout session, and free parking at GRCC.
  • TRADESHOW ONLY - Thursday, October 3:  tradeshow with lunch and free parking at GRCC..


By Aug. 23

Aug. 24-Sep. 20

After Sep. 20

Full $99 $109 $119
Wednesday Only $50 $55 $60
Morning  $75 $85 $95
Afternoon $65 $75 $85
Tradeshow Only $50 $55



Cancellation Policy: No refunds. However, if you are unable to attend, you may transfer your registration to an association executive, professional meeting planner, or other qualified leader involved with holding meetings or events. Contact the office for more information at [email protected]. VSAE reserves the right to deny entry to anyone who does not meet stated criteria.

CROWD RELEASE: By registering to attend and by your presence, you consent to be photographed, filmed, and/or otherwise recorded. Your registration constitutes your consent to such photography, filming, and/or recording and to any use, in any and all media throughout the universe in perpetuity, of your appearance, voice, and name for any purpose whatsoever in connection with this VSAE event.

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Workshop  (2:30-5:00 p.m.)

Tactics for Better Engagement from Sponsors, Exhibitors, and Advertisers
Carrie McIntyre, The Wyman Company

Generating and increasing non-dues revenue is an essential activity for every association, and your sponsors, exhibitors, and advertisers are savvy buyers with high ROI expectations. This interactive, hands-on workshop will help you refine your value proposition and marketing collateral, improve your conversations with prospects, and increase your bottom-line results. At the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Sell better by helping you craft, speak about and act on the unique value proposition your association has to offer.
  • Better understand what supporters expect in return for their investment.
  • Verbalize your association’s value proposition.
  • Better prioritize your actions for a bigger topline result.
  • Walk away with checklists and other sales tools for your next pitch. 


Keynote Presentation  (9:00-9:45 a.m.) Breakfast begins at 8:30 a.m.

Beyond the Brand - Putting People First
Karen McCullough, Karen McCullough, CSP *

Engaged employees perform at high levels, create positive interactions with the customer, and are critical to the success of your organization. As companies find it increasingly difficult to compete on price and speed, the human-centric customer brand experience becomes the differentiator in the marketplace. Your employee experience directly connects to your customers’ experience and investing in engagement is key to delivering better brand experience.

  • Discover that engagement is the key to delivering the best brand experience.
  • Learn to connect the employee’s engagement to the customer experience.
  • Examine the 3 keys to creating high engagement.
  • Discover the connection between engaged employees and performance outcomes. 

 *Provided courtesy of Powell Kohne Associates, LLC.  

Morning Breakout Sessions  (10:00-11:30 a.m.) 

Building a Digital Marketing Strategy for Your Association
Jon Kinsella, Association Headquarters

The shift to mobile and social is no longer something that will happen or is happening; the shift happened. 71% of internet usage now happens on mobile and the predominant internet activity on mobile is social networking. For many of us our phones are the first thing we pick up in the morning and the last thing we put down at night. As a result, your association has more moments throughout the day to connect with members and prospects than ever before. It’s critical to deliver the right experience based on people's context so you can build personal relationships and deliver lifetime value to members. This presentation will provide high-value, low-cost tactics to enhance your organization’s digital marketing strategy so you can provide members with personalized and tailored experiences across the five stages of the membership life-cycle (acquisition, on-boarding, engagement, retention, and reactivation). 

Change is Good - Keeping Up with the Pace of Change
Karen McCullough, Karen McCullough, CSP *

Today change is more complex, more frequent and for many, more overwhelming. We all need tools and rituals that will help us not just survive but thrive. In this session, Karen empowers you with three critical steps that will help you lead and inspire change. 

  • Discover how attendees can lead and embrace change in their organization.
  • Understand why age-old ideas on how to what drives change no longer.
  • Gain awareness towards unconscious biases that may get in the way of growth.
  • Move from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset and be more open to new people and ideas.

*Provided courtesy of Powell Kohne Associates, LLC.  

Coaching Your Speakers and Volunteers to Engage Conference Attendees and Help Them to Learn
David Core, Casualty Actuarial Society and Kathi Edwards, CAE, the Learning Evangelist, LLC

In May 2017 the Casualty Actuarial Society of Arlington unveiled a new speaker coaching process called the Learning Enhancement Process that provides a series of 10-minute videos and brings a volunteer "coach" from the membership to help technical speakers change their approach to what they say and how they say it when they deliver technical presentations to CAS events. Hear how staff and volunteer "coaches" developed this Learning Enhancement Process -- how it began, what expertise was brought on-board to assist in its development, how volunteer coaches are recruited and trained, the timeline and tasks in working with speakers, reviewing content and offering suggestions, and sharing the results from session evaluations.

  • Apply a process to coach speakers and planning committee volunteers to better engage conference attendees.
  • Create an environment of growth and knowledge for a return on conference investment.
  • Be prepared to overcome typical objections by speakers and volunteers so that they see the big picture. 

Strategies and Essentials of Managing Employee Pay
Kerri Arnold, SHRM-SCP, SPHR, Newport Group

Employee pay is not only financially significant to an organization, it can also be perceived as a measure of one’s individual worth and value to their employer. In this session, attendees will learn how to: 

  • Align an organization’s pay program with the mission, vision, values, and strategy.
  • Articulate the organization’s level of pay competitiveness and find reliable pay data sources.
  • Guide managers in a proactive process to make informed pay decisions.
  • Lead efforts in determining the best approach to pay transparency.
  • Design a compensation communication campaign to build credibility, trust, and employee engagement. 

Afternoon Breakout Sessions  (2:00-3:30 p.m.) 

Manners Matter:  How Civility Can be Your Secret Weapon in Business Success
Liz Bryant, Liz Bryant Business Etiquette

In one way or another, we’re all in the big client chase.  Your client may be a buyer of your product or service, a supporter of your organization, or a participant in a program you’re offering.  The specifics may vary, but these clients all have one thing in common: you’re competing for their attention.  And their dollars.  How you treat these clients is important, but how you treat your internal clients – your colleagues – is just as critical to your overall business success. In this session, we’ll demonstrate how you can employ the basics of etiquette and civility in establishing, building, and maintaining those all-important external and internal business relationships.

  • Understanding the elements of first impressions and how to make yours the springboard to the next step in building meaningful business relationships. 
  • Mastering the art of paying attention to details to keep and deepen those relationships.
  • Learning how to avoid email and smartphone blunders that threaten to undermine all of your hard work.  

Rewarding Employee Performance
Kerri Arnold, SHRM-SCP, SPHR, Newport Group

Organizations that recognize, reward, and truly value employee contributions not only experience high levels of productivity and employee engagement, they are also recognized as great places to work.  For organizations that must use every available means to attract, motivate, and retain the best employees, creative recognition programs can  be an untapped resource for leaders to explore.  In this session, we will explore new options for rewarding employee performance, compare approaches used by small vs. large organizations, past vs. present practices, and private vs. public entities.  Participants will also be invited to share examples of their own creative approaches and success stories of rewarding employee performance.

  • New options for rewarding employee performance.
  • Approaches used by small vs. large organizations, past vs. present practices, and private vs. public entities.
  • Participants will also be invited to share examples of their own creative approaches and success stories of rewarding employee performance.

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Carrie McIntyre
Chief Experience Officer | The Wyman Company

Throughout Carrie’s career she has built successful teams and helped associations increase market share by leveraging products and services that support membership recruitment and revenue goals. Carrie began her 24-year industry career working in membership and communications roles for several D.C.-based trade associations. She then spent 15 years working for Boxwood Technologies, helping associations generate substantial revenue from Boxwood's job board platform and related services. From there she moved into senior management roles that led to her appointment as Vice President, Business Development, Technology Solutions. Most recently, Carrie was Vice President, Customer Success for Brazen Technologies. A graduate of William & Mary, Carrie is a frequent speaker and ASAE member who lives in Chantilly, Virginia, with her husband and two sons. She enjoys camping, reading and pretty much anything that involves being outside.

Karen McCullough
Owner | Karen McCullough, CSP * 

Karen McCullough is a nationally known keynote speaker and expert on change, generational opportunities and workforce trends. Karen helps organizations cut through the generational biases and get back to reality by leveraging their team’s strengths, enriching the work environment, and driving better results. Each of her presentations brings a realistic perspective on workplace trends, employee engagement, while offering actionable content. BONUS! She’s fun! She creatively blends current research with humor, concepts and stories, moving participants to take action. For the past 15 years Karen has shared her insights to top organizations such as VMware, Procter & Gamble, US Department of Justice, JPMorgan Chase, Symantec, McGraw-Hill, National Homebuilders, Shell Oil, Mercedes Benz, The World Bank, American National Insurance, Humana, United Way, American Heart Association and MD Anderson Cancer Center. Before her speaking and early in her career, Karen owned and operated several retail fashion stores in Houston, Texas. Often, she hired many young employees with no workplace experience and zero in the retail industry. Karen had the keen ability identifying inexperienced workers who had the potential to become great employees- and they did, many staying on for years.! Little did she know that these early years were the foundation for her passion understanding and managing all generations. She began speaking in 2000 and began to learn more and study generational differences. Today her interest in the generations has become her passion and mission. Her programs include case studies, current research, and up to date new information and discoveries about Millennials and soon to be in the workforce Gen Z. *Provided courtesy of Powell Kohne Associates, LLC.  

Jon Kinsella
Senior Marketing Strategy Manager |Association Headquarters

Jon Kinsella is the Senior Marketing Strategy Manager at AH. He consults and drives marketing strategy for AH's client partners, and has been the driving force behind AH's best-performing digital marketing campaigns. Jon has presented at conferences like the Mid-Atlantic Society for Association Executives (MASAE) Mid-Year and Annual Conferences, Slice Communications' Social Media for Nonprofits Panel, and AH leadership and marketing events. Don't get him started on mobile strategy - the guy is way too passionate about phones.

David Core
Director of Professional Education and Research | Casualty Actuarial Society

Dave has worked for the Casualty Actuarial Society since January 2011 as Director of Professional Education and Research and is responsible for the strategic management of the CAS professional education and research departments. Based in Arlington with 40 staff, the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) is a leading international organization for credentialing and professional education. Founded in 1914, the CAS is the world’s only actuarial organization focused exclusively on property and casualty risks and serves over 8,000 members worldwide. Dave serves as the Co-Chair of the Annual and Spring Meeting Planning Committee as well as staff liaison for other PE event planning and research committees. Dave has worked in non-profit association management for over 25 years for manufacturing and marketing trade associations in addition to the CAS and is a Certified Association Executive (CAE). Dave has an MBA from George Mason University and a BA from the University of Virginia. He is a 22-year Toastmaster and likes to apply the communication and leadership skills learned there to his career. Dave has been married for over 30 years to Melinda and they have four children.

Kathi Edwards, CAE
President and Owner | the Learning Evangelist, LLC

Kathi Edwards, CAE is president and owner of the Learning Evangelist, LLC, supporting, since 2003, for-profit and not-for-profit organizations in achieving learning excellence. This includes assessing learner needs and practices; identifying and implementing long- and short-term strategies; designing, developing, delivering, and evaluating learning opportunities; and coaching staff responsible for learning and development. Kathi is a recognized expert in building the knowledge and skills of subject-matter experts (SMEs) to transform them into facilitators of learning. A passionate lifelong learner, Kathi Edwards is a staunch learner advocate serving clients as an independent consultant, writer, and facilitator. Ultimately, everything she does is focused on those who matter most: the learners. She has a long track record of evaluating and enhancing the management and execution of continuing and professional education programs in a number of organizations, resulting in more registrations, consistently higher evaluations, enthusiastic speakers, and greater value for learners. Her favorite questions are “why?” and “what if…?” – and she’ll pose them frequently when working with you, with a practiced eye that will get you thinking in new ways.

Kerri Arnold, SHRM-SCP, SPHR
Engagement Leader, Compensation Consulting Services Team | Newport Group

Kerri is a senior certified Human Resources professional, SHRM-SCP and SPHR, with twenty years of HR and Compensation Analyst experience. For over ten years, Kerri has been serving as an HR Compensation consultant and advisor for organizations in the nonprofit, healthcare, and education industries. Areas of expertise- Provide valued solutions and advice to HR Leaders, business owners, and corporate HR teams on employee compensation practices & programs.- Develop strategic and tactical solutions for base pay, incentive, and sales commission plan design to support the organization’s goals and objectives.Conduct job evaluation, job pricing and market analysis, pay grade/band/structure development, FLSA review, incentive and commission plan design and optimization, pay program policy and tactical advisory services for staff level, management, and executive positions.  

Liz Bryant
President & Founder | Liz Bryant Business Etiquette

Liz is a former award-winning television journalist who grew up in a home where manners mattered.  Her mother, a tri-lingual magazine editor, had her writing thank you notes as soon as she could properly hold a pen.  Her father, a hotel industry veteran, introduced her to the finer points of travel, service, and dining up and down the east coast.  And her Texan grandmother made sure she knew how to set a table for a bridge luncheon. Liz has a B.S. and M.S. in mass communications from Virginia Commonwealth University.  In her more than three decades of work in team, leadership, and executive-level positions in the corporate, government, and non-profit sectors, she became known and respected for the examples she set in workplace decorum and professional civility.  Liz launched her consultancy to share her life's knowledge of best professional etiquette practices to help others gain the confidence to be successful in their professional endeavors. Trained and licensed by The Protocol School of Washington®, Liz enjoys working with corporations, colleges and universities, military groups, government agencies, and non-profits to achieve their goals: for the organizations themselves, as well as for the individuals within those organizations.  

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Hilton Richmond Downtown is diagonally across the street from GRCC. Call Hilton Richmond Downtown at 1-800-HILTONS to make a reservation. 

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Win a Luxurious Loudoun Weekend Getaway for 2 (estimated retail value of over $1,500) compliments of Visit Loudoun and partners.

  • Two-night stay at Lansdowne Resort and Spa
  • 2 Suite Tickets for Loudoun United Soccer Game from the National Conference Center
  • Lobster Dinner for 2 at Ford’s Fish Shack
  • Dinner for 2 at Clyde’s Willow Creek Farm Restaurant
  • Tasting for 2 at Walsh Family Wine
  • Tasting for 2 at Catoctin Creek Distillery
  • Indoor Climbing for 2 at Summit Ropes – The largest indoor ropes course in the country
  • Historic Tour for 2 at The Marshall House
  • More surprising and luxurious experiences are included!

To be eligible, you must complete your Tradeshow Passport by visiting at least 20 exhibitor booths. Drop off your completed passport at the Visit Loudoun booth (#59) by 1:20 p.m. Winner will be announced at 1:30 p.m. You must be present to win.

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To further enhance your conference experience, VSAE has partnered with Results Direct to bring attendees a mobile app: Engagefully by RD Mobile. It's designed to give you easy access to all conference details before the event, navigate the conference while you're there, connect with other attendees, and engage on social media. Click here to view our step-by-step mobile app How To videos.

Try it out in just three easy steps:

  1. Download and install Engagefully from your phone's app store: Download for Apple | Download for Android
  2. Open the Engagefully app and search for VSAE.
  3. Tap VSAE.

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