PCMA Convening Leaders is the annual convention put on by Professional Convention Management Association. It is taking place this week at Austin Convention Center in Texas Jan. 8−11.

Austin is a very popular convention destination, with live music everywhere and star power. For example, Matthew McConaughey, who is an Austin resident, made a live appearance on stage during Day 1.

“We are thrilled to host convening leaders for the first time in Austin,” says Tom Noonan, president and CEO of the Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Austin has become a premier destination for meeting, conventions and leisure business and we are confident that we will see return business from the PCMA attendees.”

Among the keynote speakers taking the stage during this annual convention are Issac Lidsky, Jeremy Rifkin and Rachel Bostman. Lidksy may be best known as Weasel on the TC show Saved by the Bell: The New Class. A graduate of Harvard Law School, Lidsky has many interests ranging from construction to starting a nonprofit that supports blinding diseases.

Rifkin is an economic and social theorist. The author of 20 international best-selling books, he often speaks and writes about the impact of scientific and technological changes on the economy, the workforce, society, and the environment. His most recent books include The Zero Marginal Cost Society (2014), The Third Industrial Revolution (2011) and The Empathic Civilization (2010).

Botsman speaks on the power of collaboration and trust enabled by technologies, which are changing the way we live, work, bank and consume. She defined the theory of “collaborative consumption” in her first book What’s Mine is Yours and in her TED talks. Her work has been published in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, The Economist, Wired, NPR and Fast Company.

On Tuesday evening, the closing gala will feature a live performance by Austin’s Willie Nelson.

“We are excited to be in Austin for Convening Leaders 2017,” says Deborah Sexton, PCMA president and CEO. “Austin is a high energy destination and the Austin Convention Center is located in the heart of a vibrant downtown scene, supported by an expansion of new hotel offerings.  Our PCMA Convening Leaders attendees will experience this unique city and convention center that nurtured SXSW from its early beginnings to the blockbuster event it is today.”

PCMA by the numbers:

40 local musicians have been hired to entertain PCMA attendees at the convention center, ABIA, and multiple events held through the conference.
2 local non-profits will be recipients of donations through the PCMA volunteer activity and the foundation fundraising events.
241 local volunteers have signed up to fill over 400 volunteer slots/opportunities
42 local venues and restaurants booked or rented for 63 hosted client events
53 local sponsors including retail, high tech, spirits and restaurants
300 meeting planners participating in sight tours

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