03 Jun 2022

ECEF 2022 DE&I message: ‘You belong here’ resonates with audience in Washington

The biggest Exhibition and Convention Executives Forum (ECEF) since before the Covid era rallied 200 executives on 1 June, 2022, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington DC. The event is traditional an opportunity for independent and association event leaders to network and exchange insights.

Sam Lippman, president of organisers Lippman Connects, set the tone and pace for the day with his annual ‘Five data points in five minutes’. Sourced from research by Freeman, Lippman revealed the top challenges facing the industry. Coming in at the top of the list was Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) concerns.

Lippman then introduced Erin Uritus (pictured), CEO, Out & Equal, to make the case for corporate and personal allyship with the LGBTQ+ community and other marginalised people in the workplace and at our events. Uritus explored the diverse personal circumstances that present barriers to peak performance. Her key question: “What is something you are hiding at work that is negatively impacting your performance or relationships with colleagues?” 

“I don’t claim to be clairvoyant, but I didn’t have access to Freeman’s research when I asked Erin to present,” said Lippman. “I wanted Erin on the programme because she is a dynamic executive whose powerful message would resonate with the industry leaders who come to ECEF.”

Other presenter included: Chris Dolnack, senior vice-president and chief customer officer, NSSF - The Firearm Industry Trade Association and Jeff Pressman, president & CEO, ConvExx; Jeannie Henson, director of exhibit management, Siemens Healthineers North America; Liz Irving, chief Marketing officer, Clarion Events and Robin Preston, M events, American Institute of Architects (AIA). 

ECEF 2022 also featured a welcome reception and the annual TechDemo with executive-level demonstrations of best-of-breed event technologies.

Learn more about Lippman Connects, producer of ECEF and other events for exhibition and convention professionals, at