November 28-30, 2018
Naples Grande Beach Resort in beautiful Naples, Florida

Wednesday, November 28th

7:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Morning Outdoor Events


Annual EDPA Golf Open Scramble

Enjoy an optimum golf course in Naples, Florida for players of all skill levels at the private Naples Grande Golf Club. Acclaimed golf architect Rees Jones designed a par 72 championship course that proves both interesting and challenging. Each hole at this demanding course promises an exhilarating new experience. With extraordinary elevations and unique water features expertly incorporating the indigenous Florida foliage, this course offers stunning fairways for year-round play at the Naples, Florida golf resort.
(Separate fees apply.)


Fishing Excursion

Snook, Tarpon, Redfish and More!

Miles of natural shorelines, acres of grass flats, numerous creeks and rivers, thousands of oyster bars and millions of fish. That's what makes fishing in the Naples Backcountry so special.

Get away and get lost in the wilds of Naples, Marco Island, the 10,000 Islands and The Everglades to fish for some of the most sought-after shallow water game fish in the world! Captain Geoff knows these waters like the back of his hand and can put our group in the front seat for an EDPA fishing charter you won’t soon forget! 
(Separate fees apply.)


Everglades Excursion

Let our experienced tour guides show you the mystery and ecology of the Everglades on this private group excursion. Learn about the four Eco-Systems and precious wildlife that thrive in this area. This tour allows guests to experience the fascination and mystique of one of the most beautifully diverse eco-systems off the world: The Everglades. 

The adventure begins as you depart the resort in a climate-controlled vehicle, escorted by an interactive eco-trained tour guide. The guide provides full-narration of the Everglades. Guests will board authentic airboats upon arrival in the Everglades for an exhilarating ride through the backwaters of the Gulf, including mangrove tunnels and old Indian trails. Experienced airboat captains will wind through the rugged Ten Thousand Islands, revealing the hiding spots of alligators, manatee and other local inhabitants.  
(Separate fees apply.)

2:00 PM to 4:30 PM


Management Issues Forum

As our industry evolves, our businesses must adapt.  Opportunities abound but so do the challenges. ACCESS 2018 kicks off with an interactive forum for C-level attendees to discuss the issues we all face by taking advantage of these new opportunities and overcoming the challenges.   Your participation is key, so come prepared to talk about the things that are keeping you up at night.

Moderator: Dan Serebin, CFO, Derse

2:00 PM to
4:30 PM


Design Issues Forum

Is experiential engagement a real thing or just a buzzword? How can we implement “design thinking” in our dialog with clients? Design Issues Forum takes on these questions and more, delving into the changing nature of face-to-face marketing and the strategy that should drive it. Our clients—and their customers—have expectations that we can help them clarify while we partner with them to make the engagement real and the experience memorable.

Come to this session prepared to share best practices—or to look for ways to enliven your creative offerings.

Moderator: Stephen Ross, VP Creative, Access

4:30 PM to
5:30 PM

First Timers' Meeting and Reception

Welcome to EDPA ACCESS! We’re glad you’re here, and in addition to growing your business and sharing your experience with other attendees, you probably have some questions. This reception is designed specifically to answer your questions, explain our programs, and help you make the most of your time and your association. Board members will be on hand to give you suggestions for education that is most relevant to you and your company.

Supplier Showcase Preview

Members do business with members: It’s the EDPA way! Visit potential partners in their exhibits at the Supplier Showcase. Start conversations that will help build your business—and that of other EDPA members.

5:30 PM to
7:00 PM

7:00 PM to 8:00 PM

Opening Keynote Plenary Session

Join us Wednesday evening as ACCESS 2018 kicks-off with EDPA’s first “TEDTalks” style keynote session.  Three separate speakers deliver three unique topics in just one hour. It’s a fast and furious way to get everybody involved in “The Revolution of Thinking”. Don’t miss it.

Lisa Degliantoni.png

How My Day Job at an Experiential Learning Start Up Revolutionized the Way I Thought About...Everything

Lisa Degliantoni, Engagement Specialist

Everything we know and believe is being disrupted. How can we train ourselves to think like designers, creating solutions to problems from our everyday lives to space travel...while keeping our eyes on the ground and doing the simple task of engaging with our audiences and our community? In this interactive session, Lisa, a wildly enthusiastic communicator, journalist, talk show personality and artist, will draw our ACCESS audience in with a story about her experience as Engagement Director at ground-breaking start up HackStudio. She’ll challenge the audience to think about how playing with perceptions and building excitement can create meaningful engagement goals and result in compelling experiences.

Rob Steel.jpg

Revolutionary Sound Engagement

Rob Steel, Sound Designer and Composer

As the lead at DePaul’s School of Cinematic Arts Sound Design, Rob has deep insight not only into how to design an immersive and evocative audio environment, but also how young people trigger their own creative engagement. Leveraging his skills as a sound designer and composer in theater, video and film, Rob will demonstrate tricks to unleashing heightened engagement that will inspire the audience to think differently about the world around them, and what their audiences experience.  Rob will incorporate audio examples that demonstrate the power of music and sound to influence thoughts, feelings and actions.

Tami Evans.jpg

Lighten Up and Lead: Leverage Levity to Boost Client Confidence and Employee Engagement

Tami Evans, Employee Engagement & Levity Leadership Expert

A happy workplace is imperative to success, but how do you remain positive AND professional?  Laugh and learn key characteristics to create levity in the worker, workforce, and workplace, with tools that help you reach your personal and professional potential through the power of fun. Connection creates culture and culture creates employee engagement - and the fastest way to connect is through levity. Engagement empowers employees to collaborate through challenges, create innovative solutions, and communicate confidently. Not to mention the bump to your bottom line!

Welcome Reception & Dinner

Nothing beats catching up with old friends and colleagues as another year comes to an end—and before ACCESS 2018 goes into high gear with our education program. Always a fun evening in a relaxed atmosphere, the Naples Grand Beach Resort is the perfect backdrop for our welcome reception and dinner.

8:15 PM
to 10:00 PM

Thursday, November 29th

Breakfast / State of the Association

Fuel up for the day as you hear our current president, Donna Shultz, and incoming president, Dave Flory, tell you about where EDPA is today—and where it will be tomorrow. This is your chance to learn about all the EDPA initiatives and make a decision about how you can become involved.

8:00 AM to 9:00 AM

9:00 AM to
10:00 AM

FPO Headshot

Morning Keynote:
Flashes of Genius - Learning the Art and Science of Creativity

Allen Gannett, Founder & CEO, TrackMaven

The standard view of creativity is one of constant brainstorming punctuated by sudden flashes of genius - it is not something you can be intentional or methodical about. This talk will disprove this, explain how flashes of genius actually happen and provide ways any creator can increase their odds of having one.

The talk is based on two years of research for Gannett's most recent book The Creative Curve (June 2018, Penguin Random House). As part of this, he interviewed dozens of the world's leading creatives such as celebrity chefs, multi-platinum musicians, billionaire entrepreneurs, and fine artists. In addition, he talked to the leading scientists and academics who study the field. Based on this, he found four patterns—The Four Laws of Creative Curve—that all creatives engage in. These laws are not only scientifically valid, but can be followed by any aspiring creative. This talk will give a sneak peek into Gannett's research and an early look at how you can leverage it.

Supplier Showcase

There’s no way you were able to visit all the exhibits in the Supplier Showcase last night. Here is another chance for you to see what other members offer that will help you delight your customers.

10:00 AM to 11:30 AM

Your Association Luncheon & Town Hall Meeting

Join the EDPA’s leadership for a conversation about the association, where it is today and where it’s going. Give feedback, get feedback—this luncheon and peer-to-peer meeting helps set the stage for the future of your association.

11:30 AM to
12:30 PM



12:45 PM to
1:45 PM


Industry Issues Dialogue:
The Challenge of Engagement

The relevance of face-to-face marketing is not in question. The issues currently on the table include how to increase engagement at trade shows, how to do that profitably, and how to—or how not to-- integrate trends and technology—never mind our customers’ wish lists.

Our panel will explore how to include engagement tactics, both digital and analog; how design can facilitate this inclusion; and how to determine whether to outsource or to incur overhead. Plus, there are new overall challenges for production in executing to these new criteria; what do our facilities need to be competitive?

Join us—bring your voice, your questions and your experience.

Moderator: Chris Griffin, President, TS Crew

2:00 PM to
3:15 PM


CFO Roundtable

Our businesses are transforming!  We are increasingly delivering comprehensive experiential engagement solutions rather than architectural-based designs and builds.  As the value chain changes to meet this transformation, so must our financial thinking.  Our old financial models are no longer meeting our needs. Be part of a candid, causal and real conversation about this necessary financial revolution and how our role as financial leaders is changing.

Moderator: Dan Serebin, CFO, Derse

3:30 PM to
4:45 PM


Women in Exhibitions

An annual highlight at EDPA ACCESS is the Women in Exhibitions session—and 2018 is no exception. Once again chaired by Amy Sondrup, President, Access TCA, women in the industry will come together to identify the unique challenges facing women, challenges such as:

  • Work-life balance: best practices based on trial and error

  • Leadership development: how to identify future leaders in the company

  • Crashing through the glass ceiling: erasing the last vestiges of the “old boy” mentality

  • Diversity of all kinds in the workplace—how to respect it and where to draw lines

  • Delegating responsibilities because we’re used to doing it all

For more information or to suggest topics, email Amy at asondrup@Accesstca.com

This session is for women only.

Moderator: Amy Sondrup, President, Access TCA



12:45 PM to
2:00 PM 


Design Thinking Do’s—Make Your Personal and Professional Life More Artful

Design Thinking is one of the sexiest topics bandied about in boardrooms, classrooms and conferences! But how does it apply to non-designers and can it create impact outside the workplace?

This personal and interactive session will lead us through exercises on how to apply Design Thinking to everyday issues/problems facing house hunters, family, conference attendees, etc. Lisa will apply the fundamental tenets of Design Thinking to show audience members how to become solution-focused and action-oriented towards their personal goals, the future and their customers’ needs.

Presenter: Lisa Degliantoni, Engagement Specialist

2:00 PM to
3:15 PM


International Exhibiting: The Future is Global

According to EXHIBITOR magazine’s International Exhibiting Survey, the majority of U.S. exhibitors are currently participating in Ex-US trade shows and events, and seven out of 10 have plans to do so in the foreseeable future. But what challenges does that kind of globalization pose, and how can experiential designers and producers help clients navigate the complexities involved? This session will begin by examining recent research on exhibiting companies’ international-exhibiting plans, preferences, and pain points, and conclude with a panel discussion featuring experts on the logistics and cultural nuances of overseas trade shows and events.

Presenter/Moderator: Travis Stanton, Editor, EXHIBITOR Magazine

3:30 PM to
4:45 PM

Andrew Snyder.jpg

Engaging the Senses in a Hyper-Digital World

Opportunities for live engagement are more important than ever before. With most people imprisoned in a digital world of screens in all sizes, the chance to interact with others and fully engage has become a social imperative. In this groundbreaking talk, Creative Director Andrew Snyder shares 20 years of expertise in awakening the senses to drive engagement and business. His Chicago-based business has provided creative and design direction for everything from Olympic bids to “the experience” for an audience of 20,000 technology-entrenched marketers. Andrew’s insights and nontraditional approach will leapfrog your clients to the next level of audience engagement, action and results.

Speaker: Andrew Snyder, Executive Creative Director, Snyder Catalyst, Ltd.

Free Time

5:00 PM to
6:00 PM

VIP Reception (Foundation Grantors)

This reception acknowledges the contributions of the EDPA Foundation Grantors, companies, who support the work, both personally and financially, of the EDPA Foundation. If you would like to be part of this group, talk to Dave Walens sometime during ACCESS 2018.

6:00 PM to
6:30 PM

6:30 PM to
10 PM


Not-So-Silent Auction & Presidents Gala

Our Not-So-Silent Auction kicks off the evening festivities with the chance to do some holiday shopping. But the auction is part of a mission. It feeds the EDPA Foundation which provides scholarships to the next generation of industry families, supports universities that prepare future exhibit professionals, and gives financial assistance to our colleagues in a time of need.

The Gala Reception, which follows the auction, is a celebration of what EDPA and its members have accomplished throughout the year. In addition to an unforgettable dinner, the Gala features awards presentations, recognizing the excellence of the work that makes our members shine—and that keeps our clients choosing to engage in face-to-face experiences.

Friday, November 30th

8:30 AM to 9:00 AM

Free Time

9:00 AM to
11:00 AM


State of the Industry Interactive Data Session & Breakfast

Please join us for breakfast as we show you how data drives engagement—and our industry. This session is a must for all of us who care about the economic health of our industry. We’ll explore benchmarks for expenditures and profits that can function as guidelines for the year ahead. In addition, highlights from the CEIR Index will shed some light on different metrics, such as exhibit space sold, professional attendance, numbers of exhibitors, and gross revenue.

As EDPA members, we have a unique, 360-degree view of the politics and the power that underpin prevailing models. This insight tells us exhibitors are the least powerful group in the face-to-face ecosystem yet almost entirely responsible for revenue from trade shows and events.  Without their robust participation, the industry would disappear. Is the current model sustainable?

With data collected by advocacy groups since 1999, we’ll show the need for full disclosure and control of exhibitor costs--and that exhibitors need objective marketing data that is comparable, within industry segments, from one event to another. We believe EDPA can strengthen the relationships across all constituencies—exhibitors, show organizers, and our suppliers—by creating a platform to forge relationships encompassing all three segments of the industry, a forum that clarifies how show organizer efforts and initiatives must provide the framework for exhibitors to achieve a positive return on their investments. Part of this course correction involves increased transparency to remove road blocks that impede successful exhibiting.

Presented by
Dan Greene, Managing Partner, Nolan Advisory Services, Inc; Sue Huff, Medtronic, Senior Director, Global Conventions; Amanda Helgemoe, Nuvista, Founder and President;
Anne Trompeter, Principal, Live Marketing

11:30 AM to
12:30 PM

Jackson Young New.jpg

Closing Keynote: 
Technology is Magic,
The Magic of Technology

Jackson Young, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Master of Arts program in Exhibition & Experience Design, FIT

Fifty years ago sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke formulated three adages that are known as "Clarke's three laws." The third law stated, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." At this most exciting time in human evolution, we are witnessing this third law coming to life and making every aspect of our lives more magical than ever. The experiential industry is facing tremendous change due to rapidly evolving technological advancements. We must be vigilant of new trends and harness the magic of technology to help us create innovative experiences for our clients. Join this keynote presentation to discover some amazing technologies that are quickly forming, evolving, and aiming to magically transform our industry in the future!


Roundtable Discussions / Networking Lunch

Did you miss out on a discussion of a topic that’s of special interest to you? Our Networking Lunch regroups today.

  • Recruiting Talent

  • Collaboration of Experiential & Design

  • Navigating Show floor Protocols

  • In-House vs. Outsource

  • Internship Programs

12:30 PM to 1:30 PM

1:45 PM to
2:45 PM

Strategic Creative Session:
"The Revolution of Thinking"

Time to bring it home at a session to make the creative strategies we’ve been discussing actionable. Designing experiential engagements is a leap from simply designing exhibits, and it’s a leap that clients now expect you to take. As the creative leadership in your organizations, you have to be ready to tap your team’s potential and develop effective processes that empower them to be collaborative with clients on the “big” ideas. We’ll explore how to hone in on your company’s unique strengths and develop a custom roadmap to meet the new demands of face-to-face engagement.

Stephen Ross, VP / Executive Creative Director, Access TCA, Inc.
Brian Baker, VP, Highmark TechSystems

2:45 PM to
3:45 PM


 Supplier Showcase

Your last chance to see what’s new and cool at the Supplier Showcase! Finish your conversation—and maybe place an order.

4:00 PM to
6:00 PM


Chapter Challenge

Come out and show your support for the EDPA regional chapters at their annual team challenge. Whether you’re an active chapter participant or just a passive cheerleader, there’s plenty of fun (and cocktails) to go around. Don’t miss this!

ACCESS 2018 program subject to change.