Get Involved in your Local EDPA Chapter!
by Dave Flory, EDPA Chapter Development Committee Chair

 Dave Flory, EDPA Chapter Development Committee Chair

Dave Flory, EDPA Chapter Development Committee Chair

The local chapters of EDPA embody our core values and strive to build upon them regularly throughout the year and culminating at our annual conference, ACCESS. Chapters focus on building membership not only at the local but also the national level.  Membership value is created by holding regular meetings, programs, workshops, seminars and networking events. No chapter would be complete without their efforts and successes at giving back to the community through a multitude of goodwill programs. The health and future of our industry is further supported by the chapters in their affiliation programs with local universities and involvement in promoting the industry at high school levels. Chapters also play a role in promoting our industry through their public relations efforts aimed at obtaining advocates for our goals with other associations, government, and industry partners.

The recent health and growth of chapters has been fueled by adopting a corporate sponsorship model that allows for the volunteers to focus their efforts on developing content for meetings, goodwill projects, and advocacy throughout our community. Chapter meetings are held now across the nation on an almost monthly basis and can be best be identified by going to http://www.edpa.com/about-the-edpa-1#chapters to contact local leadership for upcoming events.

Chapters are avid supporters of the communities we work in. In conjunction with the EDPA Foundation, chapters participate in a multitude of local fundraising efforts to support the Randy Smith, Exhibit 4 Smiles, and a variety of other industry and community related programs. Our chapters are consistent donors at the annual silent auction held on behalf of the Foundation each year at ACCESS.

University affiliation has been best exemplified by EDPA involvement with FIT and Bemidji State University. Chapters provide the opportunity for students to participate at the local level in meetings, design challenges, the presenters challenge, educational and networking events. All these better prepare them for the exciting career in the experiential design and production industry. Our member companies benefit by having better qualified employees as they start their industry careers.

Building advocates for our industry is another important role that the chapters play working along with National. As one example, the Midwest chapter has had consistent involvement with IExchange on Navy Pier. Participants include, MPI, PCMA, IAEE, GMIC, ILEA, HSMAI, GBTA, and local government and business leaders. There are over 1,000 attendees annually at this event.

Chapter involvement enhances the value of your EDPA national membership by affording more conveniently located opportunities for you or your employees to grow, develop and give back to this great industry that we all participate in. The more that you deposit the more you receive in return. I encourage you to invest in your local chapter of EDPA. Not only will you have the aforementioned rewards, but you will find a great group of people that know how to have fun and really look forward to getting together!