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2022 Connect x BizBash 40 Under 40: Anca Trifan

Anca Trifan, 39, is the founder, creator and technical event producer at Tree-Fan Events.

Anca Trifan

Anca Trifan, CMP, DES, is the 39-year-old founder, creator and technical event producer at Tree-Fan Events. She's based in Boise, Idaho.

What I do:
I am the founder, creator and technical event producer of Tree-Fan Events, a boutique event planning and production agency that is offering event planning consultation, experience design and production management for live, virtual and hybrid events. I am also the host of â€śEvents: Demystified,” a tactical podcast for anyone in the events industry—beginner or pro—where entrepreneurs, event professionals, influencers and event industry leaders from the community share their personal and professional experiences with our audience. 

I'm also the founder of the online community Women in Events (Tech + Prod), a platform that advocates for women in the technology and production world—a passion fueled by a deep conviction that there’s a need for more women role models in the production event world.

Why I love my job:
Over almost two decades of working in events, I've worn many hats, from sound engineer to lighting designer to video producer to event planner, event manager and now technical event producer. I love every aspect of the event industry. Every role I've played thought me something new, and I love a challenge!

My career journey:
During high school and college, I started working in radio, which has brought forth a love for audio engineering, event production and what we now call podcasting. This journey was not an easy one. I had to leave everything and everyone behind early in my 20s to move an ocean away to a place that would give me the opportunity of learning and working in event production, [which is] unavailable to women in my home country. I never regretted the choice I made, as hard as it was to walk alone for many years on this new career journey. 

My greatest career accomplishment:
Mixing the FOH sound for Michael Jackson's last cameo appearance during Christian Audigier's 50th birthday bash in May of 2008, a total career highlight. Most recently, helping raise over 2 million dollars during a virtual fundraising gala event for a Portland-based organization, one of many that had a tremendous ROI by embracing the virtual event "formula" created.

How I helped my organization during COVID:
At the onset of COVID in March of 2020, we had three days to pivot a 600 in-person fundraising gala to a virtual event. Not only did we do it, but we also raised over $650,000 during the hourlong virtual event. That set the stage for us to "perfect" the virtual formula that was going to help dozens more organizations fundraise during that first year of the pandemic. Today we're working on perfecting a new "formula," a seamless and memorable hybrid event production for our clients, in close cooperation with our partners. 

The time I averted a complete event disaster:
I was producing one of the first hybrid conferences at the beginning of 2021, and my production partner informed me the morning of the load-in that their labor got sick and they were trying to find other techs to send instead. I made some calls as well, and we got some people [who were] unfortunately not specialized in each of the roles we needed them for. I ended up coaching the lighting tech how to run and route sound for the event over comm, while also doing the stage manager duties during the event. We pulled it off—but I don't think I want to train a green tech anything over comm anytime soon. 

My most memorable event experience in the past year:
In June of 2021, I got to get out of my studio "cave" and hang with my favorite production team while producing and executing a hybrid event at a beautiful Oregon winery location, off the grid. It was also fun because we were streaming the event, and the venue's broadband infrastructure was less than ideal or reliable. 

Best advice I’ve ever received:
Starting a business and running events are not for the faint of heart. You have to learn to not let little disappointments get you down and to stay focused on the big picture.

Impressive stats I’m responsible for:
Helping nonprofit organizations keep fundraising in a virtual/digital format while also having fun. [I've helped] over 100 nonprofit organizations pivoted their in-person fundraiser to virtual, many of which raised above and beyond their past in-person goals. One organization fundraised over 2 million dollars during their virtual gala event. 

What’s next?
Making hybrid events easier to understand, and more affordable to produce, for the local event space I'm a part of in Boise, Idaho.

What I do outside of work:
Fitness is my therapy of choice. I'm currently training to compete in a natural bodybuilding competition at the national level. Also hiking and adventuring with my family. 

Dream vacation:
Exploring new places. Preferably a mountaineering adventure with lots of hiking, sightseeing and camping. 

Favorite icebreaker line: 
If you could create your own AI manager, what traits or skills would it have?

Connect with Trifan on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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“Connect x BizBash 40 Under 40” is sponsored by VDA, an experiential marketing and event design agency based in Massachusetts that specializes in custom live, virtual and hybrid experiences.