The key activities that drive AFT and connect members to one another are our summits which we hold twice a year. Although we strive to choose locations and destinations that our members (and their spouses) will be excited to attend, our primary goal as Program Committee is provide content that will educate and inform our members of relevant matters within our industry. As program chair for 2020 I had another initiative that included having more inclusion of women leaders in our speaker line up.
As evidenced in our surveys, we saw that the content presented this year was well received. Quite a bit of time is spent thinking of an agenda that reflects topics that our organization as a whole is thinking about. Furthermore, we try to have a common thread amongst all the sessions in order to deliver a sense of consistency throughout each meeting. Our theme for our Spring Summit in Tucson was “Building Bridges into the Future” which had a number of sessions focusing on the power of partnerships and networking. Our recent summit in Nashville revolved around “Visions of Leadership.” I am proud to report that over 50% of the sessions held in the fall summit were led by women speakers. Our keynote session was delivered by Meg Crofton, the first woman President of Disney Worldwide Resorts. Meg was able to share countless “magical stories” and reminded all of us about our privilege and responsibility as leaders to shape the minds and hearts of those around us.
2020 will shape up to be an amazing year as Jeff Harper takes over as Program Chair. He already has an incredible agenda set for La Jolla, California in March and is in the works to shape the theme and agenda for Fall 2020 in Vancouver Canada. Hope to see you all there!
Brian M. Otte
AFT Program Chair 2019