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06 Oct 2020

Simon Parker and Carina Bauer voted in as new Chair and Vice Chair of the AEO

Simon Parker and Carina Bauer voted in as new Chair and Vice Chair of the AEO

The AEO Council has officially elected Simon Parker, executive vice president of Informa Markets, as the next Chair of the Association of Event Organisers.

The election, which took place at the AEO Council meeting held on 23rd September via video conference call, also sees Carina Bauer, chief executive officer of IMEX Group, become Vice Chair. Former Chair, Darren Johnson will now assume the role of Past Chair for the forthcoming year.

Parker said: “I'd like to thank Darren for his leadership and support in navigating the AEO and our industry through these truly uncharted waters. Darren has crystalised the very essence of what an association is about – collaboration, innovation and resilience through unity.

It's an honour to step into such a crucial role at such an important time and I'm looking forward to working closely with the AEO and some of the most competent and talented event professionals the industry has to offer, as we see this crisis through to the other side.â€'

Johnson said: “When COVID-19 hit, the industry saw its darkest hour – first to close and seemingly will be one of the last to open. But, during this time we have also achieved things that had long been part of our mission.

Our collective lobbying efforts have raised awareness of our industry with the highest level of government and simultaneously brought our economic contribution to surface. The AEO has also seen greater collaboration and more engagement than it's ever had. Simon is the perfect candidate to support the AEO in continuing that direction - congratulations.â€'

Chris Skeith, chief executive of AEO, said: “This year has been unlike any other. The pandemic galvanized working groups into action, which saw the creation of the All Secure Standard industry guidance.

We have raised awareness of our industry through lobbying and media in a way we never thought possible. We have seen unity and leadership which has been nothing short of remarkable.

I'd like to personally thank Darren for chairing the association so diligently, supporting the groups, team and myself in progressing the AEO's strategy, while remaining calm and collected through this crisis. I look forward to working with Simon on getting the industry we all love so much back on its feet.â€'

The AEO will also be welcoming Julie Driscoll from Hyve Group, while Emma Barrett (Broadway Events), Emma Cartmell (CHS Group), Lee Newton (Media 10), Mark Moloney (TE Trade Events), and Ed Tranter (73 Media) were all re-elected to the Board.

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