President's Message 
Happy Spring MPI Tennessee! I am loving this weather and love seeing all the flowers and trees bloom. It's my favorite time of year! 

Last month we had amazing luncheons in the central and west regions. A big thank you to Michael Dominguez for sharing his knowledge and expertise regarding the current distractions we have in our world today around business and the meetings industry. It's always such a treat to hear his perspective and passion for meetings. I hope you had the chance to join us. In the west, we held some awesome round-table discussions around some major topics in our industry including hotel acquisitions and branding, innovative meeting elements and contact hot topics. Thank you everyone for joining us. 

Already this month we've celebrated GMID, Global Meetings Industry Day, at the George Jones Museum. GMID events were held across the globe to demonstrate the measurable impact that meetings have on businesses, economies, and communities. Leaders from across the state shared updates on their cities/regions and the how meetings impact our state. It's a great day of celebration and we appreciate all that were able to join us.
We also have a MIX event in the central region on April 18th at Wildhorse Saloon. Join us for a night of mingling, fabulous fare, and a lesson on how to boogie Nashville-style. Bring your boots and business cards! 

Next up is our Annual Circle of Excellence Awards Gala and Auction scheduled for May 18th at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. This is always a fun night celebrating our members' leadership, achievements, and commitments to our chapter and meetings industry. 'The Future is Now' is our theme so there's sure to be some fun and exciting "WOW" moments throughout the evening. Registration is open and details may be found on our website. It's an event you won't want to miss. Our online auction is LIVE! Be sure the visit often as items are updated daily. The funds raised from this event help fund our educational programs and scholarships. Bid high, bid often. 

Lastly, welcome new members! We are so glad to have you in the MPI Tennessee family. Our chapter has hit an all-time high in our membership numbers with 343 members! Kudos to our membership team and everyone for making this such a fun and valuable organization. Everyone wants to be and should be a part of it. This is a very exciting time for our chapter, you should be very proud!
See you soon!

In This Issue
Our Sponsors
Platinum Partners

Gold Partners 

Do you want to become an MPI Tennessee Chapter sponsor and partner with the state's largest and most vibrant community of meeting and event professionals?

For more information, contact Jill Kopecky, Director of Strategic Alliances for MPI:TN!

Looking to make a job change or know someone is?  Check out the positions available at
Upcoming meetings and events....

MPI Tennessee MIX Event
Network Nashville-Style
Tuesday, April 18, 2017
4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Wildhorse Saloon
120 2nd Ave N, Nashville, TN  37201

Mix it up with MPI! Our friends at Wildhorse Saloon are generously hosting an MPI Tennessee Chapter Meetings Industry Exchange (MIX) networking event on Tuesday, April 18. Join us for a night of mingling, fabulous fare, and a lesson on how to boogie Nashville-style.

2017  Circle of Excellence 
Awards Gala  & Silent Auction
Thursday, May 18, 2017
Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum

Networking and Auction, Nominees Reception 5:30 PM
Dinner and Awards 7:00 PM
Drinks and Dancing 8:30 PM

Every year, MPI Tennessee comes together to celebrate the accomplishments of its members and to raise funds so we can continue to support our chapter programs and benefits that bring the best industry resources to our members and partners. Make plans now to attend this fabulous event.
ICYMI (In Case You Missed It)
March Central Education Luncheon

During the March Educational Luncheon, speaker Michael Dominguez shared insights into the state of the meetings industry and the importance of understanding understand economic concerns and forecasts that will dictate behavior in the meetings environment.

In case you missed this meeting, Michael discussed the changes in today's travel environment and showed data that explained the new competition for hotel rooms, historic demand in transient and leisure travel, and the changes planners should make in how they approach their room blocks. Here are some tips:
* Be flexible with dates and patterns
* Book Sunday - Wednesday for the most leverage
* Talk to the hotel about your pick-up early. At 90 days, you should be having a realistic conversation about what you will need and can reassess adding or releasing.

Thank you to the Tennessee Bankers Association for hosting this great event. Thank you to our sponsors Schenk Photography, Stage Left Catering Inc., Brown's Florist and Classic Event & Tent Rentals for your support.

Session Survey Score: 9.62 out of 10

"I'd give 11's if I could! The venue was lovely, the food, yummy, and Michael is amazing!"

"First, the food was PHENOMENAL. I was one of many who shamelessly went back for seconds. :) Also, Michael Dominguez is a great speaker. I always enjoy hearing him speak to our chapter."

"Best MPI meeting I've ever attended, I'm still thinking about that amazing speaker! I wish he taught a class, I'd sign up right away!"
Silent Auction is Now Live!

Looking for a weekend getaway? What about VIP passes to some of Tennessee's biggest events? Those items (and many more) are up for bid on MPI Tennessee's Bidding for Good page. Bid often and bid high, as the proceeds from our auction help fund scholarships and education for our chapter.
Silent Auction Items
MPI Tennessee Chapter is requesting a donation to be used as a Silent Auction Item for our Annual Circle of Excellence Awards Gala & Silent Auction taking place on Thursday, May 18 at the Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum. As our biggest fundraiser of the year, we recognize industry achievements, individual excellence, and raise money for our chapter's development.

We are asking for your assistance to ensure another successful event.

Learn more about our Silent Auction  
Ready to submit an item?

If you have questions, please email Lauren Stout, Director of Special Projects at
Looking for Brand Exposure?
Looking to get more exposure for your business through MPI? A sponsorship is a fantastic way to get your company on display while supporting MPI Tennessee.

While we have the Regional, Gold and Platinum options available, there are also opportunities to be the Hotel Sponsor, Gala Sponsor, CONNECT sponsor or Retreat Sponsor. We can customize a package just for you. Contact Jill Kopecky at to discuss all of your sponsorship options further.
Join MPI Tennessee Chapter at WEC 2017 as we meet with other members from around the world.  WEC is June 19-22 in Las Vegas at MGM Grand. HUGE DISCOUNT!
Use code LVCMBR17
Volunteers Needed
Gala volunteers needed for Thursday, May 18 - please contact Kimberly Bean at or 615-812-6152 for further opportunities.

If you or your organization have internship opportunities, please contact Kimberly Bean at or 615-812-6152.
Member Recognition: Movers & Shakers
Jamie Hulet, HMCC, has accepted the position of Specialist, Event Marketing with ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, TN.  In her new role Jamie will be responsible for providing strategic event resources to maximize ALSAC donor engagement.  She will plan and execute logistics related to ALSAC events and tours at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.  ALSAC is the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
New Members in March

Heidi Baker

Josh Bush
Grand Ole Opry Entertainment Group

Melanie Collett
JW Marriott Nashville

Christina Dallas Jones
The Hermitage Hotel

Krystal De La Rosa
Nashville Marriott Vanderbilt

Robert Hickman
4Wall Entertainment Lighting

April High
Trattoria Il Mulino

Maeghen Pickett
Gaylord Opryland Resort & 
Convention Center
Kaitlin Priestley
ALSAC/St. Jude Children's 
Research Hospital

Lisa Schneider
Maple Ridge Events

Elliott Smith

Jennifer Squires
Santa Rosa Consulting

Angela Terry

Cynthia Vera
Embassy Suites Nashville 
South/Cool Springs

Jill Yochim

Member Anniversaries
Congratulations to our members celebrating an MPI anniversary in April!
Sheryl Baker 21 years
Rebecca Ashley 18 years
Vicky Ballard, CMP 17 years
Sharon Hill 14 years
Aaron Mayo 12 years
Sophia Boulanger 7 years
Kimberly Bean 6 years
Natalie Branham 6 years
Hilda Pope 5 years
Benjamin Prom 5 years
Selena Miller 4 years
Paige Bacon 4 years
Randall Gross 2 years
Abigail Buller, CMP 2 years
Christopher Johnson 2 years
Traci Franzone 1 year
Kelli Myers 1 year
Andrew Nelson 1 year
Rick Rodriguez 1 year
Marisa McWilliams 1 year
Kristen Robillard 1 year
Brittany Fryman 1 year
Nery Duarte 1 year
Caroline Colditz 1 year
Elizabeth Stubblefield 1 year
Anita Akers 1 year
Felisha Cook 1 year
Samantha Lane 1 year
New Member Spotlight
Name:  April High

Current Employer and Position:  Trattoria Il Mulino, Sales Manager


How long have you been in this position?   2 years 

Why did you join MPI? 
Educational Component and Networking Benefits.

What do you hope to get from your MPI membership?
Connecting with new & old industry friends 

What is your favorite meeting or event you have been involved with? Why?
I was active in MPI a couple years ago and loved every aspect!

What would you like the chapter to know about you?
A Nashville native, April has been a sales and marketing professional for over 13 years. April enjoys spending time with her family, traveling and attending concerts. She also became a licensed Real Estate agent in May of 2016!