Sarah Buchbinder, Meetings Broker
Meetings Made Easy
Sarah’s main goal is to make the lives of Meeting Planners easier: helping them find and secure the perfect venue for their events; negotiating the most secure clauses and concessions in their contracts; rescheduling their in-person events; and executing COVID-safe meeting strategies. Based in the New York/New Jersey area, Sarah was featured on the cover of Meetings & Conventions Magazine, noted as of the top 25 influencers in the industry, honored as one of Connect’s 40 under 40 Peak Performers, and most recently won 2020 Meeting Planner of the year. With over 17 years experience in the meetings and events industry, Sarah is happy to be a resource to all planners.
Sumanth Channabasappa, CEO
Sumanth is an executive, entrepreneur, and venture investor. His experiences have spanned innovations, products, and services across multiple areas, such as mobile and internet technologies, telecom, cloud, cybersecurity, internet of things (IoT,) healthcare and smart cities. His current affiliations include SafeAccess, Embodied Labs and The CORE. He is also a mentor to growth-stage companies.
Shannon McCallum, Vice President of Hospitality
Shannon has had a career spanning over 30 years in the hospitality industry throughout the U.S. and Canada. She has served as Vice President of Operations for ARIA Resort & Casino, Vdara Hotel & Spa and Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. Shannon is also the Chair of the Nevada Hotel and Lodging Association Foundation and a prior Executive Board member of NHLA.
Jim Kelley, Vice President, Marketing and Industry Relations
Jim is a 30-plus year industry veteran having worked in various segments of the industry to include audiovisual & production. He has also spent time on the facility side both at hotels and convention centers and returned to his roots in the Official Service Contractor space in 2019, serving as the Vice President of Marketing and Industry Relations for Fern. Additionally, Jim is an active member of the industry operating in various volunteer leadership roles with IAEE, PCMA, the Corporate Event Marketing Association and the Incentive Research Foundation. Fern is the nation’s third-largest trade show and event service provider, and it annually serves some of the country’s most prominent trade shows, as well as regional events and numerous corporate events.