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January 20, 2010 
 
 
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FOR YOUR EVENT

We’re donating a portion of proceeds from our Women’s event Friday to the American Red Cross for Haitian relief. We’ll be presenting a check at the Heart for Haiti fundraiser tonight at the Hyatt Regency, co-hosted by MOI, Arent Fox, Vornado, Jones Lang, OPX, Skanska, and others. Thanks to all for their help.

 
We headed to the Battlestar Galactica, ahem, Gaylord National on Monday to meet several association execs attending the American Bus Association's annual trade show. We probably could have used a bus to get around the exhibit hall, which we're told is the size of five Walmarts.
 
ABA prez Pete Pantuso

The man behind the wheel of the 3,200-attendee event: ABA prez Pete Pantuso. He says the association launched its first-ever mobile event website, which allows attendees to view the show's schedule, announcements, and exhibitors' floor locations and contact info from their smartphones. TripBuilder prez Steve Tanzer, whose company developed the site, says associations could potentially use it to generate revenue through banner ads and group texts from sponsors. He says the mobile sites take a week or two to develop and can cost from $3,000 on up, depending on size of show.

 
Chance (5th) - in-text or
 
ABA prez Pete Pantuso

A couple years ago, ABA began supporting a local charity in its trade show's host city. It raised $45,200 for Yellow Ribbon Fund, a non-profit in the Greater Washington area that assists injured service members and their families with everything from free car rentals to job mentoring. ABA also pledged $25,000, and raised $6000 more from members, for disaster relief in Haiti—one of the many associations opening their wallets and offering services. We want to know how your organizations are helping out in Haiti, too.
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"TWAHDY"
 
Student Youth Travel Association exec director Claudia Mansfield Sutton

One of the biggest challenges for association leaders is overcoming TTWWADI (pronounced "twahdy"). Don't worry, we had no idea what it meant either. Luckily, Student & Youth Travel Association exec director Claudia Mansfield Sutton could explain: The acronym, invented by her friend, stands for "That's The Way We've Always Done It." Claudia, who previously worked at the American Association of School Administrators, took the helm of the 12-year-old association nine months ago. As a new leader for a relatively young association, she's hoping it will be easier to make changes that might be nearly impossible at a more established org. One example: SYTA has always voted for new leadership at its annual conference; to save precious time, Claudia and the leadership are proposing to use electronic or mail ballots instead.

Student Youth Travel Association exec director Claudia Mansfield Sutton

SYTA's top two goals for 2010 are to build membership and make SYTA more of a household name. She's increasing visibility through cross-promotion with like-minded organizations. For example, SYTA and the National Association for Music Education write columns in each other's publications. Now, Claudia is expanding the exchange to several more orgs including the Learning First Alliance and the National School Boards Association. Outside the office, she's getting it done on the greens. The golf fanatic claims she's a terrible player but says it's a great business activity. She often plays with other association types and there's an annual tournament for SYTA's Youth Foundation.


THE CANADIAN LOBBYIST
 
Ontario Motor Coach Association CEO Brian Crow

Ontario Motor Coach Association CEO Brian Crow says his 1,000-member org (half American, half Canuck) launched a joint online networking portal with ABA last week. The site, GroupConnect, will make the deal-making and info-swapping that happens between members once a year at the trade show possible every day online. Brian, who doubles as CEO of Motor Coach Canada, says he's also focusing on safety and border legislation. In Canada, more lobbying happens on the provincial or regional level, whereas in the US, he says, associations are more focused on the national level. We take it that means he has to travel to a lot of jurisdictions. Whatya suppose his preferred mode of transit is?


UPCOMING EVENTS
 

January 22 - Bisnow Breakfast & Schmooze, Where do Women Stand? (Part II) - 7:45-10:00am - Sequoia Restaurant. Info

 
Send story ideas to Jessica Sidman, jessica@bisnow.com
 
 
 
Arent Fox (Smart)
 
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