You may be wondering: so who is this guy, anyway? Well, EventsForChange is really a reflection and consolidation of a number of experiences I have had over the course of my professional career, since I started as a dishwasher when I was 16. Since then, I’ve played the role of employee trainer, restaurant general manager, independent consultant, Vermont Vacation Concierge and Champlain College professor, including a particular focus on event management over the past several years. Along the way I’ve collected three college degrees and spent time as a student of business, architecture, and culinary arts.
I’m still learning. Over the years, I have benefited from the input of dozens of smart, creative, and insightful people who have provided encouragement and helped me evolve my thinking so far, and I don’t expect that to end any time soon. I also know that I have developed skills as an educator, speaker, writer, problem-solver, event manager and, of course, an experience designer. I can play a guitar, ride a snowboard or a windsurfer, hike a mountain and climb an occasional rock. I’m a pretty good cook and a respectable 3-point shooter. I have discovered that I am both a cat-person and a dog-person. I enjoy fast cars, when I can get my hands on them. I consider myself an experience collector and have been fortunate to have travelled to India, Brazil, Morocco, Dubai, Hong Kong, France, Ireland, England and several Caribbean Islands. On one beautiful day, I jumped out of a plane at 11,000 feet. But there are still many things I have yet to do.
I’ve come to realize that the activities that have been most fulfilling and enjoyable for me tended to include two things: the ability to create unique experiences for people and the satisfaction of knowing that my efforts had made some positive difference in people’s lives, even if only for a short time. This is why I consider myself to be an experience designer. Whether it is developing a menu, creating memorable vacation experiences, designing a physical environment, presenting a professional workshop, developing a college course, or deciding what we should do in class today, the nature and quality of the experience determines how much that activity will resonate when it’s over. Done well, it can be quite powerful, often in ways that might not be immediately obvious. And we’re all so busy these days and bombarded with so many choices of information and ways to spend our time, that it’s become more important than ever to be clear on why we’re here and how we’re spending our time and resources. My goal here is to help educate current and aspiring event professionals about their potential to create positive change in the world they touch every day, to use the power of events to really make a difference.