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40th Annual Conference Presenters
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The following is a list of presenters at the ACCED-I 40th Annual Conference. New bios will be added as we receive them.

 

SPECIAL INTEREST SESSION PRESENTERS

Johni Amos, Associate Director, Conferences & Guest Services, American University

Johni Amos has been at American University for four years. She is the Associate Director of Conference Administration and Fiscal Affairs for University Conference & Guest Services. In addition to conferences, Johni has worked in various areas of Student Affairs including Residence Life, Housing, and Leadership. She received her B.A. in Criminal Justice and Sociology from Ohio Northern University, her M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration and Student Personnel from Kent State University, and her PhD in American Culture Studies from Bowling Green State University. 

Kimberly Araya, Director, American University

Kim Araya is the Director of University Conference & Guest Services at American University in Washington, DC.  Prior to her coming to American University in January of 2014, her previous position for 10.5 yrs was the Director of Conference & Event Services at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in Minneapolis-Saint Paul, Minnesota.  She was instrumental in getting the One-Stop Shop concept set-up on the UofMN campus.  She currently opened AU’s new conference center in the Summer of 2017. Kim is currently serving as a board member for ACCED-I, has served two years as the Region 5 Director and has served on various committees of ACCED-I since 2005.  She works closely with colleagues in various Convention and Visitors Bureaus, area hotels, as well as other Universities in the DC/MD area to help market the surrounding cities as well as her University.

Kavinda Arthenayake, Director of College Events & Conference Services, Rhode Island College 

Kavinda Arthenayake is the Director of College Events & Conference Services, Commencement at Rhode Island College since May, 2018. Prior to that, he worked as the Director of Conference Services,Commencement, Transportation Services, Printing & Mailing at Oregon State University for 15 years and directed Commencement for 13 years. In addition, he worked in Conferences and Events at University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, Evergreen State College and also as the Director of Alumni Relations at his Alma Mater Southern Oregon University where he received his Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees.

 

Elijah Ajayi, Associate Director of Conference Services, Emory University  

Elijah Ajayi is the Associate Director of Conference Services at Emory University. He started working in the Conferences Office in 2016 after working nine years in Athletics at Emory University. He currently oversees the Summer Intern Housing Program, Guest Housing, and many more duties as assigned. The Summer Intern Housing Program (SIHP, pronounced “sih-hip”) has seen steady growth over the years with over 25 groups each summer that equates to over 600 interns each summer.

 

Hilary Brenneman, MBA, Conference Manger, University of Colorado Boulder

Hilary joined the University of Colorado Boulder Conference Services Team in 2018, after working in collegiate conferencing for 10 years at Fort Lewis College. In her current role as Conference Manager, Hilary gets to split her time working with our guests and with our student staff. Hilary earned her bachelor’s degree in Art and Art History from Augustana College in 2008 and her master’s degree in Business Administration and Hospitality from Johnson & Wales University in 2018. In her spare time, Hilary loves to craft, read, run and dream about her next big travel adventure.


Alicia Q. Ferguson, Event Coordinator, Temple University 

Alicia Q. Ferguson was born Philadelphia, PA. She graduated Overbrook High School and received her Bachelors of Arts in History from Hampton University in Hampton, VA. Returning home to Philadelphia she began working a temporary job at Temple University as a reservations coordinator. Since that time she has transitions into an Event Coordinator for the Howard Gittis Student Center where she is still currently employed. She decided to begin taking classes towards her Master’s Degree at Temple University.

While at Temple she has helped to shape the department by creating reservations policies that help to ensure Student Orgs, University Departments, and External Clients have a great planning experience. Additionally, she has increased external revenue for the department exceeding $170,000 per year. She finds time to partner with other department in student affairs including serving as a hearing officer for the office of conduct, diamond accreditation board for Fraternity and Sorority Life, National Coming out week committee, office recognition committee, and the office of Institutional Diversity, Equity, Advocacy and Leadership.    

In addition to working a full time position she also works with Touch of Elegance catering and coordination business, as an Event Planner. In her spare time, she loves doing Loc (hair) maintenance for a select number of clients monthly. While holding three jobs she still finds time to work for her church on various auxiliaries including the Trustee Board. She is the youngest member to be inducted on the board of Trustees and the church’s official board. Additionally, she is an avid billiards (pool) shooter holding a world record of 3rd place in 2018.

Rob Foreman, Director of Conference & Event Services, Saint Anselm College 

Rob Foreman is the Director of Conference & Event Services at Saint Anselm College in Manchester New Hampshire.  His 25+ years of higher education experience in Student Activities, Housing & Residence Life, First Year Programs, and Conference & Event Services has landed him at variety of colleges and universities in North Carolina, New Jersey, and New Hampshire.  Rob has presented award winning programs at state, regional and national conferences, developed and presented a Webinar titled “Generating Revenue- Finding Campus Opportunities”, has been featured in a New York Times article titled “Corporate Events on Campus, and has authored articles for national publications dealing with generating revenue and customer service.  In addition to his regular work responsibilities, he has also worked for the NFL and the Super Bowl XXXVIII Host Committee, attended Disney University, and serves his community volunteering with local groups and coaching youth.

Leslie Gerretse, Senior Manager, University of California, Riverside

As the senior manager of hospitality services at the University of California, Riverside, Leslie Gerretse is dedicated to driving positive change at every opportunity. She believes you can improve customer satisfaction, operational efficiency, and revenue by inspiring your staff and actively collaborating across teams. Leslie's approach has been tested and honed since she began working in hospitality in 2002—first at boutique hotels, then in professional sports, philanthropy, and higher education. Outside work, Leslie enjoys cooking, traveling with her husband, and walking her dog, Freddie Mercury.

 

 

Nikki Garces, Director of University Relations, Varsity Spirit

Nikki Garces is the Director of University Relations at Varsity Spirit. She has worked directly with Conference and Event, Housing, Dining and Athletic Directors for over 20 years within Varsity’s University Relations Department. In addition to University Relations, she trains our customer service teams, is an integral part of our system development team and strives to improve the customer experience through processes, development, and training.  She is a native Memphian and earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Memphis. Nikki also served 12 years as a medic in the Tennessee Army National Guard finishing her duties as a Staff Sergeant with one combat deployment. She loves watching her children succeed at what they are passionate about which includes competitive baseball and gymnastics, so far!


Katrina Kenton, Manager of Campus Events and Conference Services, Mount St. Joseph University 

 Katrina Kenton is the Manager of Campus Events and Conference Services at Mount St. Joseph University in Cincinnati, OH, and is also the Communications Chair for ACCED-I Region 3. She currently manages a staff of 22 employees at “The Mount”, including clerical support, a set-up team, theatre technicians and student ushers. Over the past seven years, Katrina has opened new doors and opportunities to showcase her campus to thousands of people in an effort to overcome the label of “the best kept secret in Cincinnati.”

Katrina brings over 25 years’ experience in sales and customer service spanning the retail and hotel industries, as well as secondary and higher education. She has managed a sales force of 250 representatives of a direct-sale global company, helped to create the Concierge program for a 4-Star hotel in Cincinnati, was the Activities Director for an A+ rated high school in Florida of 3000 students, and was recently recognized as a “Phenomenal Woman of Mount St. Joseph University” for her leadership and accomplishments.

Two personal philosophies drive Katrina and her team’s success: “No is never the right answer,” and “Failure is not an option.” Honesty, Respect and Trust are at the core of every interaction she has with co-workers and clients, and her team is committed to those same values.  This team, and these values, have helped to generate over $1 million in gross revenue for The Mount in the past five years.  Thousands of guests come to her campus each year to experience Theatre productions, dance recitals, community programs, athletic games, academic competitions, summer conferences and more!

Most of Katrina’s annual revenue is from ‘repeat business’, which means The Mount has earned the client’s trust and exceeded the client’s expectations year after year. She is excited to share her experiences and hopes to inspire you to achieve your professional and financial goals.


Stacie Kroll, Director of Compliance and Risk Management, Five Colleges, Inc.

Stacie Kroll is the Director of Compliance and Risk Management for Five Colleges, Incorporated. Stacie has been with Five Colleges since 2012 when she was hired as an Insurance and Claims Specialist, and she assumed a Risk Manager role in 2015. Stacie was promoted to Director in 2017. The Compliance and Risk Management office directly supports the four private members of the consortium; Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith College.

In this role, she has responsibility for all institutional compliance program implementation, enterprise risk management, and risk management and insurance operations. She also serves as Vice President for the colleges’ captive insurance company, Collegiate Catalyst Fund. Additionally. she serves in various leadership roles for her professional association, University and Risk Management Insurance Association (URMIA).

Prior to assuming her role at Five Colleges, Stacie was an Employment Practices Liability and Directors and Officers Liability Claims adjuster with Chubb Insurance Company. She holds a business management degree from Westfield State University and is a veteran of the United States Navy.

Jill Larson, Sodexo Sales Manager, Northern Arizona University Summer Camps & Conferencing

I have worked in the hospitality industry for most of my career and absolutely love it. I graduated from NAU in 2000 with a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management then immediately started working at the Four Seasons Resort in Santa Barbara as a Food and Beverage Supervisor.  Four Seasons taught me what exceptional customer service truly is and how to meet extremely high standards. After spending a few years in Santa Barbara, I moved to Florida where I started my first position in sales. Right away I knew that this is what I wanted to do and by my second year in that position became the number one sales person. From there, I was offered the opportunity to open the High Country Conference Center in Flagstaff as their Conference Services Manager.  I managed the daily events there for about 5 years.  Wanting to transition back into sales from operations, I accepted the new Sales Manager role for NAU Summer Camps and Conferencing in 2012. Today, I manage the department in its entirety from marketing, sales, contracting, planning and invoicing for around 100 events each summer.  I have grown summer revenue by 35%, number of summer events by 25% and summer attendance by 30% in the past 7 years.

I am on the Minors Safety Committee at NAU charged to provide leadership, implement best practices, raise awareness, and assist in the implementation and follow through of our minor’s safety policy. In 2017 I was awarded as one of Flagstaff’s 20 under Forty Honorees. I also serve as Secretary on the Board of Directors for the Flagstaff Leadership Program and graduated the program in 2018.

I have been a member of ACCED-I since 2013 and have volunteered at the past two annual conferences and for the Outreach and Membership Committee.  I am also currently working on my CCEP Certification.

Marjorie Lemmon, DRM, ARM, CPCU, Risk Manager, Yale University 

Marjorie Lemmon has been the Risk Manager at Yale University since June, 2003. Prior to that, she was the risk manager for Ann Taylor Stores Corporation for almost 11 years. Her responsibilities at Yale University include oversight of the University’s risk financing and the operational risk management activities and initiatives throughout the campus. She also assists with the ERM activities. She is a member of the University’s Committee on Programs for Children and Youth, Joint Health and Safety Committee, Background Check Committee, Shop Safety Committee, International Operations and Compliance Committee and Traffic Safety Committee, among others. She is also the ranking member of the governor-appointed State of Connecticut Insurance and Risk Management Board, having served since 2000.  Before moving into risk management Ms. Lemmon began her career as an underwriter for two different insurance companies, including underwriting national construction accounts and universities. She is also very active in the University Risk Management and Insurance Association (URMIA), having served as URMIA's President from 2014-2015, as a member of the Board of Directors from 2008-2014 and, most recently co-Chairing the 2019 Annual Conference Committee and chairing the Honors Committee.  Ms. Lemmon earned her undergraduate degree from Smith College and her MBA from the University of Hartford. She has obtained the Associate in Risk Management (ARM), Associate in Underwriting (AU), Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU), and Certified Risk Manager (CRM) designations.


Karen Lew Feirman, DHSc, LAT, ATC, Vice President of Varsity University and Varsity Camp Administration, Director of Safety for Varsity Spirit 

Karen is the Vice President of Varsity University and Varsity Camp Administration and also serves as the Director of Safety for Varsity Spirit.  In 1996, Karen received her Bachelor of Science degree and Certification for K-12 Health and Physical Education at the University of New Orleans. Karen earned her Masters of Education degree in Human Performance with an emphasis in Exercise Science in 1997 from the University of Louisiana at Monroe. Karen graduated from Nova Southeastern University in August, 2016 with a Doctor of Health Science degree.  

Karen was a longtime athletic trainer and camp manger for Varsity Spirit prior to moving into her full-time role. Karen’s interests include social emotion learning, ensuring the safety and well-being in your activites, Learning and Teaching Styles in Athletic Training and Drug and Alcohol use and abuse among college students and student athletes. Karen has numerous publications including, Athletic Training Exam Review: “A Student Guide to Success”, Sixth Edition, and has been published by the NATA and Cramer Athletics for her work in preventing and reducing injuries in cheerleading. She has participated as an athletic trainer and medical support staff for Varsity Spirit, including the National Collegiate Cheer and Dance Championships, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the London New Year’s Day Parade.


Nathan Lubich, Assistant Director for Operations, Yale Conference & Events, Yale University 

Nathan received a Bachelor of Art degree from the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point in History, Spanish and International Studies and a Master of Science degree from Arkansas Tech University in College Student Personnel.

Coming from a residence life background, Nathan worked closely with housing operations before transitioning to oversee summer operations.

Nathan joined the Yale Conference & Event team in 2017 where he continues to focus on the operational side of summer programming.

 

Amber Mann, Coordinator of Conference Service & Marketing, Emory University  

Amber Mann is the Coordinator of Conference Service & Marketing at Emory University. Amber received her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Hospitality Management from Georgia Southern University. Amber has previously worked with Conference Services & Housing at Georgia Southern University for several years before joining the Conference Services team at Emory University. Amber is active in Association of Collegiate Conference and Events Directors-International (ACCED-I) where she is currently serving as Co-Chair of the Student Development Action Team.

 

 


Nancy Martin, Director of Conferences & Events, Bowie State University

After graduating from the University of Virginia in 2006, Nancy started her career in conference services as a summer student worker. After working as a summer Conference Assistant, she was hired as a full-time professional as a Lead Program Coordinator. Four years later, Nancy left UVA and moved to Washington, DC where she worked at American University as a Conference & Events Coordinator and received her MS in Justice, Law & Public Policy. In 2015, she left AU to go to the University of the District of Columbia as the Meeting & Event Manager to Associate Director of the Student Center for three additional years. As of May 2019, she now works at Bowie State University as the Director for Conference & Events. Nancy serves ACCED-I as the Chair for the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee and as a part of Region 4 leadership.

Mariellynn Maurer, CCEP, Director of Conference & Event Services, William & Mary

Mariellynn Maurer is the Director of Conference & Event Services at William & Mary.  As a member of ACCED-I, she has presented conference sessions at the regional and national levels of ACCED-I, served as Regional Director and on the Board of Directors.  Currently, she serves as a mentor and grader for the CCEP program candidates.  Mariellynn is an active member in the Greater Williamsburg Chamber and Tourism Alliance and an alumna of the LEAD Historic Triangle Program.  She is the President Elect of the Professional and Professional Staff Assembly of W&M and sits on the university’s Strategic Planning Committee. Together with the lead trainer at W&M, Mariellynn co-teaches customer services courses and has served as cohort captain for the university’s Supervisor Institute and Building Stronger Leader programs.  Mariellynn’s experience in the hospitality industry is not limited to the world of higher education, she also spent more than 11 years working in hotel sales and marketing.  But, no matter what organization she’s been a part of, she’s always been part of a team and recognizes the importance of relationships, communication, and people working together to accomplish great things.

Jason McClellan, CMP, Senior Director, Auxiliary Services, Tufts University

Jason McClellan is Senior Director, Auxiliary Services at Tufts University.  His role focuses on improving the guest/client experience for business units of the University to drive revenue growth and improve space and service utilization across the University’s 4 campuses.  Jason earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is a candidate for Master of Business Administration at Boston College.  Additionally, he is a Certified Meeting Professional.  Jason’s experience includes multiple industries and market sectors in various metropolitan areas, including hotels, corporate law, the Federal government, and higher education where he has focused on streamlining the guest experience by improving customer service and empowering teams while driving bottom-line results.  

Laurie McKain, Director Of Auxiliary Services, Marietta College

Laurie McKain is Director Auxiliary Services at Marietta College.  As Director, she oversees all conference services operations, dining services, bookstore, mailroom, vending, insurance/risk management and oil and gas leases.  A marketing professional with over 30 years experience in event planning, marketing and public relations, Laurie began the Auxiliary Services department with the development of conference services 13 years ago.

 

Brittani Menina, CMP, Events Manager, Johns Hopkins University 

Brittani Menina is the epitome of logistics, event creation, planning and execution with more than a decade of experience.

She is the Events Manager at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, DC, where she leads the efforts for all large-scale and high-profile customized events. She also oversees the full planning for the annual commencement ceremony and reception that hosts 2,500 guests. Before her transition into higher education, Brittani spent seven years as a corporate meeting strategist managing flagship events both domestic and international.

Brittani has earned numerous industry accolades including the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) credential designated by the Events Industry Council and the Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) Certified Wedding Planner. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in Sports/Entertainment/Event Management with a concentration of Event Management from Johnson and Wales University Charlotte Campus.

Brittani is very active in the industry and holds membership with Meeting Professionals International (MPI) Potomac Chapter as a volunteer on the Career Development Committee. Through MPI, she co-facilitates the chapter’s CMP Prep Course and Boot Camp classes. She is also an active member of ACCED-I.

Brittani is dedicated to a myriad of social causes and philanthropic pursuits. Currently, she volunteers with various nonprofit organizations that educate women and girls of color about HIV.

Dylan Morris, Assistant Director, Conference & Guest Services, North Carolina State University 

Having spent the early part of his career in the field of large-scale event production, Dylan made the jump to higher education and joined the Conference and Guest Services team with NC State University Housing in 2013. In his current role, he oversees the summer conference operation, a robust year-round guest housing operation, and serves as marketing liaison for NC State University Housing. When not working with conference clients and guests, Dylan enjoys spending time being creative in the kitchen and trying to train his untrainable dog.

 

Christina Patarino, CCEP, Conference Coordinator, University of Colorado Boulder

Christina Patarino has worked in the hospitality industry for over 40 years.  For the last 20 years, she has been with Conference Services at the University of Colorado Boulder, serving as the Scheduling Conference Coordinator and the last 13 years as a Conference Coordinator.  She has planned conferences locally and nationally for up to 13,000 participants, along with organizing youth trips to both Rome & Germany.  Christina has been an active member of ACCED-I for 12 years by volunteering and presenting, along with being a Regional Director and the Hospitality Co-Chair for the Annual ACCED-I 2012 Conference in Denver.  In 2016, she received her CCEP and is currently the Vice Chair for the CCEP Action Team.   In her “spare time,” Christina is a singing Diva and most of all loves spending time with her family and friends.

Steven Robertson, CEO, Julian Krinsky Program Development & Management

Steve Robertson is the CEO of Julian Krinsky Camps & Programs (JKCP), an organization specializing in youth-to-adult programming that turns curiosity into passion and skill. Having worked with youth from around the globe for almost 25 years, Steve is also a generational expert specializing in Gen Z, Millennials and Alpha Gen. His primary responsibility is to provide cutting edge high-caliber academic curricula for 20-plus summer programs. From pre-college academics to cooking and business to sports, the programs keep an ever-changing student engaged. Steve partners with highly esteemed institutions including the University of Pennsylvania, Yale University, the NFL and many more! From being a business leader who’s worked hard establishing the company’s culture to training an international workforce of hundreds each summer and helping prepare the students in the programs each year for their future careers, Steve’s impact on this generation has truly come full circle. Working, teaching, socially observing and interacting with them as students, employees and business partners on a global scale, Steve is not only a generational expert, but has become the empirical authority on Gen Z. For more than 25 years we have had unprecedented access to this generation allowing us to gather an unmatched volume of behavioral and observational data in many different situations and environments, at their most authentic. All of this equates to a deeper understanding and profound insights Steve is able to provide.

Nathan Ruger, Sales Manager, Conference Services, New Mexico State University

Nathan Ruger is an experienced hospitality industry professional and is currently the Conference Sales Manager for New Mexico State University’s Conference Services Department.  Nathan joined the Sodexo family in 2013, assuming management positions at Dillard University and Pan American Life Conference Center in New Orleans.  During his time In Louisiana Nathan was successful in leading the Catering and Conference Services departments in all business deliverables including marketing, event design, product and service offerings innovation, sales, logistics, contract negotiations, billing and financial analysis.  Throughout his career Nathan has enjoyed sharing with colleagues’ aspects of his diverse operational management experience within major hotel chains, convention centers, live entertainment venues and professional sports stadiums to contribute toward a more robust solutions system and overall team comradery and success. Nathan earned his BS in Hospitality & Event Management from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and his MBA at Carlow University.  Nathan’s favorite activities include hiking with his wife, cooking and playing the drums with other local musicians. 

Carye Vogt, Manager of Conference Services and Hospitality, California State University, Northridge

Carye Vogt is the Manager of Conference Services and Hospitality at California State University, Northridge.  Working in the Housing Department, Carye oversees not only Summer Conferences, but Guest Housing, Marketing, Mail Services and all Special Projects for Student Housing. Throughout her 7 years at CSUN, Carye has created an environment that has quadrupled gross revenue while only increasing the student staff from 10 to 14 along with two professional staff (including herself). Carye’s strength in creating a team comes from her 20+ years in education as a high school teacher and professor of political science. Carye earned her Master’s Degree in American Studies from Pepperdine University.  Carye has been a member of ACCED-I for six years and has been a member of the Student Development Action Team for two years. Carye’s philosophy is from the wise world of Mary Poppins – “In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun!”

Michelle Wu, CCEP, Director of Conference Services, Illinois Wesleyan University

Michelle is the Director of Conference Services at Illinois Wesleyan University (IWU), a small liberal arts institution in the heart of central Illinois.  Hired in June 2015 as their first Director after a 15 year hiatus, Michelle focused primarily on building a robust events and conferences business, including weddings, proms, and summer camps.  Her work with the latter inspired her to more closely examine best practices for protecting youth visiting campus, culminating in a campus-wide review of current formal and informal procedures and the development of a new, clearer process for summer camps, music lessons, and other youth-oriented activities on campus.

An active ACCED-I member since 2007, she has presented at several regional and annual conferences, and in 2013, received her designation as a certified Collegiate Conference and Events Professional (CCEP).  Michelle recently served as a Regional Director for Region 3, and began her term on the Board of Directors in March 2019.

 

TOPIC EXPERT PRESENTERS

Kimberly Araya, Director, American University

Kim Araya is the Director of University Conference & Guest Services at American University in Washington, DC.  Prior to her coming to American University in January of 2014, her previous position for 10.5 yrs was the Director of Conference & Event Services at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in Minneapolis-Saint Paul, Minnesota.  She was instrumental in getting the One-Stop Shop concept set-up on the UofMN campus.  She currently opened AU’s new conference center in the Summer of 2017. Kim is currently serving as a board member for ACCED-I, has served two years as the Region 5 Director and has served on various committees of ACCED-I since 2005.  She works closely with colleagues in various Convention and Visitors Bureaus, area hotels, as well as other Universities in the DC/MD area to help market the surrounding cities as well as her University.

Matthew R. D'Oyly, Director of Events and Conferences, Otterbein University

Matthew R. D'Oyly, is in starting his tenth year at Otterbein University and has had the privilege to create the Office of Events and Conferences and serve as the Director. In this role, Matthew is responsible for providing leadership and direction for all aspects of operations for events and conferences for the campus community (students, faculty, and staff) and external clients (e.g., summer camps, meetings, etc). This includes being the point person for the hosting of CNN and the NY Times for the Fourth Democratic Presidential Debate in October, 2019. Previously, Matthew was the Director of Constituent Communication and Philanthropic Programs where he developed and implemented an integrated constituent communication and engagement strategies for the University’s key constituencies. Matthew worked to enhance the ongoing engagement efforts of departments across advancement, and the University in general, to raise support for the University’s priorities, and programs among its students, alumni, parents and friends.

At Otterbein University, Matthew has served as the President of Staff Assembly, chair of Administrative Assembly, served on the Bylaws committee of the University Senate and was elected to serve on the Governance Commission to rewrite the Bylaws for the University. He is also the adviser for Sigma Delta Phi (Sphinx). As an alumnus of Otterbein, he served on the University's alumni board.

Matthew is the 2010 recipient of Hope College’s Vanderbush-Weller Award, which recognized him for his extraordinary contributions to the lives of students at Hope. He was also given the honor of being elected as an honorary member of the Emersonian Fraternity.

He is also a graphic designer, and designs logos, posters and t-shirts for many local organizations. He was instrumental in establishing the Mona Shores Choir Fund through the Community Foundation for Muskegon County which supports high school students hoping to pursue music as a next step.

 
Krystal Grace, CCEP, Assistant Director Conferences & Special Events, University of Illinois Housing

Krystal Grace is the Assistant Director of Residential Life for Conferences, Special Events, and the Student Dining and Residential Programs Building at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Krystal has worked with Conferences and Special Events for over 15 years including her time as the Coordinator. Krystal’s love of events started as a student when working summers as a Conference Clerk and later a Summer Coordinator. As the Assistant Director Krystal has enjoyed working with groups throughout the year to host events in the Student Dining and Residential Programs building. Krystal works closely with campus and community partners to host regional and national events and recently expanded her responsibilities to include planning the Move-In days at Illinois.

The Conferences and Special Events operation hires 25-35 students per summer to staff area desks and work with conference sponsors. The Student Dining and Residential Programs Building hires 55-65 students each year to staff the information desk and package station.
Krystal enjoys volunteering for ACCED-I and is currently serving on the Hospitality Committee and the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. Krystal earned her CCEP at last year’s conference