BizBash Live

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LOS ANGELES, WEDNESDAY, JULY 19, 2017, CALIFORNIA MARKET CENTER
BizBash Idea Fest

Find your AHA moment as BizBash Live Los Angeles returns to California Market Center on Wednesday, July 19. Packed with incredible new activations, innovative new vendors, inspiring new education, and so much more, this once-a-year experience is the perfect opportunity to connect, collaborate, and create lasting relationships.

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Speakers

Jeff Olsen
Jeff Olsen

Director of Special Events
The Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Foundation

What was the most memorable event you’ve worked on?

Producing the inauguration of the 11th president of the University of Southern California was an incredible experience and taught me so much about events and my own capabilities.

What was the AHA moment that made you love events?

The moment came during my first university commencement when, after all the planning and stress, I saw the faces of the thousands of students and family members in attendance. I realized that what we do is bigger than any one person.

Any advice for up-and-coming event pros?

Learn as much as you can from wherever you can! Internships, seminars, online courses—the more tools you have in your toolbox, the more valuable you become.

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Gabrielle Kessler
Gabrielle Kessler

Creative Director
The Visionary Group

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Jes Gordon
Jes Gordon

Owner/Creative Director
jesGORDON/properFUN

What was the most memorable event you’ve worked on?

We are so incredibly lucky to be involved in all sorts of events, but mainly one stands out in particular: the Berry Gordy Jr. and Smokey Robinson 50-years-of-friendship celebration. There are no photos of this event and there were only 16 people in attendance, but the event was Gordy throwing a special dinner in honor of his incredible friendship with Robinson. It was held in Beverly Hills in a private room, and only family was invited from both sides. The two gentlemen serenaded each other all night long at the dinner table, and, truthfully, it was one of the most amazing experiences I have ever had the honor of witnessing.

What was the aha moment that made you love events?

I have been doing events since I was a very young girl, but I think that my major aha moment was when I had found out that a bride and her mother were just recently granted the honorable badge of both surviving breast cancer. It was then that I felt a great deal of pride in being able to help provide in creating an event filled with monumental joy for the ladies and their families; this is truly what I feel this profession should be all about.

Any advice for up-and-coming event pros?

Lots:

  • Never let your ego get in the way of learning, and continue to learn throughout your entire career; you should never stop learning
  • Don’t ever work for free, unless it’s for a charitable cause
  • Hire great people around you, including financial advisers and event-support help
  • Don’t take on what you don’t know
  • Most importantly, no one can ever disrespect you but you.

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Kari Brizius
Kari Brizius

President
Relan

What was the most memorable event you’ve worked on?

My most memorable event is working with the Green Sports Alliance Summit. In March 2011, the Green Sports Alliance launched in the Pacific Northwest with six teams and five venues. Watching this event grow to nearly 500 sports teams and venues, from 15 different sports leagues, and 14 countries has been amazing. Sports have such a huge impact on our culture and our communities. It is so impressive to watch the sports teams step up to the plate and take a stand for the environment. The teams, leagues, venues, and sponsors acknowledge that we need to make changes to keep our planet healthy. As influential heroes and leaders, they have taken this opportunity to create a call to action that their fans will embrace. Together, they will make a difference for our planet.

What was the AHA Moment that made you love events?

Growing up as an avid athlete, my AHA moment was watching a video of Nadia Comaneci scoring a perfect 10 in the 1976 Olympics. At a young age, I knew I loved events, the crowds, the fans, and the excitement around them, whether that was fund-raisers for animals, parades, or even the circus. Every event is unique. Today's events create experiences that can have an extraordinary impact on attendees. I love being a part of the experience and helping to create that impact.

Any advice for up-and-coming event pros?

Be brave, be bold, think outside the box. Be ahead of the curve and imagine that what’s around the bend is where you might find your next AHA moment.

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