BIZBASH LIVE: PLAN-A-THON
CHICAGO, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11 2015, REVEL DOWNTOWN
BizBash Idea Fest

Mentors

PJ Acosta
PJ Acosta

sales manager, Revel Decor

As sales manager for Revel Decor, a wedding and special event management company in Chicago with an emphasis on luxury service, P.J. Acosta seeks out new corporate business, manages existing client relations, develops creative, and writes proposals. Acosta’s previous event experience includes leading event teams, marketing, media relations, red-carpet events, and product launches.

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David Adler
David Adler

C.E.O. and founder, BizBash

David Adler, a lifelong media executive, is the C.E.O. and founder of BizBash, the leading trade media for the event and meeting industry. He has also been an advisor to the State Department in areas of protocol and events. Previously, he was vice president of corporate communications for Primedia and Macmillan Publishers. Upon graduating from American University, he founded, operated, and successfully sold a society and political magazine for the nation’s capital called Washington Dossier.

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Martin Balogh
Martin Balogh

associate executive director, meetings and travel group, American Bar Association

A 34-year employee of the American Bar Association (ABA), Martin Balogh has held numerous positions in the meetings and travel group, assuming the role of associate executive director in August 2014. His group oversees the ABA's annual meeting of 10,000 attendees and a midyear meeting with more than 4,000 attendees. The department negotiates contracts for more than 320 meetings each year and oversees an in-house travel agency for both member and staff travel. Additionally, it is responsible for two conference centers, which host more than 5,000 meetings a year in 25 meeting rooms, between the ABA's headquarters in Chicago and its Washington, D.C., office. In January 2015, he oversaw the launch of ABA Leverage, a meeting sourcing and contracting service for law firms and legal-related organizations. Balogh serves on the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) Board of Directors and was previously a trustee for the PCMA Education Foundation. He served on the 2005 and 2006 PCMA Annual Meeting program committees.

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Tina Carlson
Tina Carlson

president, Ivan Carlson & Associates

Tina Carlson’s interest in design and production was sparked early on, growing up backstage at Ivan Carlson & Associates, one of Chicago’s most renowned institutions. After studying at the Goodman School of Drama and Columbia University, Tina started her career by taking a position as a catering director. Soon after, she joined the family business and nearly quadrupled the company’s sales within the first year. In 1988, Tina took over as owner and president and was soon joined by her brother, Scott, who came on as her partner and vice president. Tina is a Certified Meeting Planner whose work with Fortune 500 companies has earned her a place in the BizBash Hall of Fame and numerous industry awards and accolades.

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Kelly Evans
Kelly Evans

senior manager of experiential marketing and events, Groupon

Since joining the fast-growing daily deal site Groupon in 2010, Noelle Provencial has produced more than 500 events, including a 1,500-guest hangover brunch at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas; an 8,500-guest screening of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off on Wrigley Field; hometown holiday parties for more than 3,000 employees; and the award-winning "Camp Groupon," a ticketed weekend-long “urban adventure” for 500 people. Provencial manages the team responsible for all experiential marketing programs in North America, bringing the loved brand to life through sponsorships, events, trade shows, and other in-market promotions. Before Groupon, Provencial co-founded PoorLittleRichGirls.com, an online lifestyle magazine for Chicago women. The Northwestern University graduate previously worked at the Fairmont Chicago.

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Bridget Frizzie
Bridget Frizzie

creative director, Kehoe Designs

As creative director at Kehoe Designs, Bridget Frizzie is responsible for forecasting and implementing emerging trends, overseeing creative services, and influencing brand identity and design direction. Frizzie has more than 20 years of experience in event decor, interior styling, visual merchandising, color consulting, and floral design. Her passion for high design and aptitude for finding unique visual perspective have made her a visionary within the industry.

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Audrey Gordon
Audrey Gordon

owner, Audrey Gordon Parties

This “Empress of Schmooze” has made building strong relationships with clients and vendors a top priority for the past 30 years. Audrey Gordon’s charisma and networking have helped her become one of the most recognized and respected names in the industry. Her worldwide associations, positive attitude, intuitive creativity, and attention to detail enable her to design and execute quality events. She is a founding member of ISES Chicago, director emeritus of Search Foundation, an ambassador to TSE Chicago 2013, and a member of NAPW and the Chicago Area Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

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Debi Lilly
Debi Lilly

chief eventeur, A Perfect Event

Entertaining and design expert and author Debi Lilly believes in elegant and easy design ideas for all. With more than 20 years of experience, her mission is to provide inspiration and education for any occasion. She shares her secrets in her new book, A Perfect Event, as well as through her seasonal e-magazine. For more than 10 years, Lilly was Oprah’s “Favorite Pro” on The Oprah Winfrey Show. She has been featured as an entertainment expert in outlets such as Martha Stewart Weddings and InStyle. In 2010, she launched an exclusive decor line with Safeway. Her client roster includes Dom Pérignon, Moët Hennessy, Bentley, Lamborghini, and Harry Winston.

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Anthony Navarro
Anthony Navarro

founder, Liven It Up Events

Anthony Navarro has been planning and coordinating events for more than a decade. A Chicago native, Navarro graduated from DePaul University and began working in a hotel, where he mastered the art of planning events and weddings. His main goal has always been to plan a memorable and meaningful event for his clients. With Liven It Up Events, he enjoys working in a variety of distinctive spaces and crafting unique events. Navarro is also the co-founder of Stand Up, Business Professionals for Marriage Equality; the co-host of the talk show "The Wedding Planners;" and the author of The Business of Becoming a Wedding Planner.

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Gregory Perrine
Gregory Perrine

sales manager, Limelight Catering

From private dinner parties to gala celebrations for more than 1,000 attendees, Gregory Perrine has seen all sides of catering in his six years of experience. Honing his skills at one of Chicago's notable caterers, he learned the nuances of off-premise catering, focusing on weddings and social events. Joining the Revel Group and Limelight in 2014, Perrine has narrowed his focus to luxury private events and nonprofit galas. His notable events include the Museum of Science and Industry's Columbian Ball, the Museum of Contemporary Art's artEdge, Chicago Botanic Garden's All Aboard! Gala Dinner, and the Steppenwolf Theatre Company Gala.

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Jodi Wolf
Jodi Wolf

president, Paulette Wolf Events & Entertainment Inc.

Jodi Wolf joined Paulette Wolf Events & Entertainment Inc. in 1993 as a production coordinator and was promoted to vice president in 1996 after successfully helping to secure the Summer Olympics project in Atlanta. Since becoming president in May 2002, she has attracted the nation’s largest corporations, municipalities, sporting events, and foundations. Wolf’s most recent accomplishments include becoming the published author of “Event Planning Made Easy.” She has been featured in People, Redbook, Successful Meetings, Midwest Meetings, Crain’s Chicago Business, and the Chicago Tribune. Wolf’s previous career experience includes stints at the Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, Academy Tent and Canvas, the Greek Theatre, and Somerset Catering.

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