July 2017 Member Spotlight
Carrie Abernathy CMP, CEM, CSEP
Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN)
RMPCMA member since 2016
- Why did you join RMPCMA? I was VolunTOLD by the President at the time (Jamie Shelley)
that I was going to join practically as soon as I entered the state last summer. I agreed right away and the rest is history.
- Have you attended the National Convention? If so, # of times and what did you enjoy most? Yes, I’ve been going religiously since 2008, I believe. I really enjoy seeing the innovative ideas that PCMA chooses to “test” on our crowd and translating those experiences over to my own events. Also the networking is just unmatched.
- What advice would you give to a person just entering this profession? I would say don’t hesitate to jump in and get involved right away. There are so many committees and boards that need fresh perspective—it can be intimidating but don’t hesitate to put your hat in the ring and at try to volunteer and get involved!
- Can you share a life lesson that you have learned in this industry? I’ve learned a lifetime of lessons in the almost 15 years I’ve been a planner. In the very beginning I didn’t understand the delicate balance between vendors and meeting planners in the industry. I didn’t grasp the delicate balance of ethics in business. Just make sure that you take time to understand that vendors are our strategic partners in the industry, and it’s important that you provide them with connections and future business instead of just staying on the “taking” end of the business. It is easy to get swept up in that—you can overstay your welcome and you can take too much in this hospitality business!
- How did you get in this business and what attracted you to this business? I got into this business in college—not because I studied events, but because I was planning all of the social events for my dorm. Someone told me that I should look into doing planning for a living and I said, “Are you crazy, that isn’t a job!”, but with some research found out it really was a profession and here I am…
- What is your favorite winter or summer activity and why? Winter: Skiing, Summer: Fishing.
- How long have you lived in Colorado and what do you like most about living here? I’ve lived in Colorado exactly a year on July 1 st . Before that I was living on a yacht in San Diego, and working from home as a meeting planner for a non-profit in DC.
- What do you like to do in your spare time? What spare time? Just kidding! I love working with other organizations in the events world—particularly the Association for Women in Events (of which I’m currently President). But when I really have down time then I enjoy fishing, skiing, and drinking great wine or exploring the Denver food scene. I have a bit of wanderlust so I’m always planning my next vacation as well. Last year I spent some solo time in Europe, trekking around to see castles and I just got back from Hawaii. I’m really hoping to do some road trips to explore more of Colorado this summer—that is my goal. Really looking forward to going to Durago, Grand Junction, Crested Butte and beyond. I’d love to hear your suggestions!
- What is one thing about yourself that no one knows? Well, I’m an open book, so everyone knows everything about me—but few people know that I have a secret talent….if you leave me alone with a patch of clovers and I can find a four leaf (or more) clover in under a minute usually. I think I have some Irish heritage somewhere in my bloodline!