Who Set The Stage For You?

Becca Barrus

Becca Barrus

Dear Reader

The theme of NAVIGATOR 2022 was “The Stage Is Set For You,” making one think of dancers, actors, and of course, musicians. When you’re enjoying a show, it’s easy to get swept up in the performance on stage, forgetting about the people working so hard behind the scenes to make sure everything is seamless.

During the Closing Luncheon, IAED President Jerry Overton recognized the IAED and PDCstaff who worked long hours both during the conference and the months leading up to it. I also want to recognize this group’s Herculean efforts.

Shout out to the incredible team manning conference registration and the Academy store, including Veronika Fagerer, Madison Stirland, Kada Carlisle, Sara Scott, Rebecca Tuft, Anterious Gant, Cary Breeze, Hailee Beatty, and Eric Fayad, who all greeted attendees with warm smiles while getting them checked in. This crew also handed out NAVIGATOR backpacks, provided directions, and answered questions. This isn’t their full-time gig either; for example, Rebecca Tuft, Sara Scott, and Veronika Fagerer all work for the translations department and volunteered to go help with NAVIGATOR. If you ever read one of the Journal’s articles in another language, chances are you’ve seen their work.

The dynamic duo of Jess Cook and Richie Solorzano managed the Exhibit Hall, keeping exhibitors organized and happy during the chaos of move in, move out, and everything in between. Richie logged an average of 30,000 steps daily during setup and take down!

What would NAVIGATOR be without iconic, distinct signage? The PDC creative team of Erin Salazar, Reeding Roberts, and Aurelio Velazquez—under the leadership of Chris Carr—completely outdid themselves with banners, flags, and triangle towers. The staging and AV for the Opening and Closing general sessions as well as the Attendee Party were magical and breathtaking.

Of course, none of this would be possible without the unbelievable talent and ability of Nikele Schwendiman and Kyla Vigil. These two professionals managed to juggle a thousand balls at the same time and pulled off an event that was nothing short of miraculous.

And when everything was all over and you got to relax by the pool or head to the airport, the NAVIGATOR team was packing up every single banner and decoration you saw. Even the podium from the Opening and Closing Sessions had to be packed up. The pallet was sent back to the IAED warehouse in Salt Lake where it’ll wait for the next NAVIGATOR. We can’t wait to do this all again for all of you!