Milestone Director appointed to MEA Board

Meetings & Events Australia (MEA) held its election on Tuesday 27 November at the Meetings and Events Australia head office in North Sydney. Three persons were elected to the Board of Directors, joining Anne Jamieson, who completes her second two-year term in 2019. Executive positions were subsequently appointed by the Board. MEA’s Board of Directors and Executive roles
  • Anne Jamieson (Saxton Group), Chairperson
  • Kate Smith (WALDRONSMITH Management), Vice Chairperson
  • Michael Firman (Harry the hirer), Treasurer
  • Alana Hay, (Milestone Creative Australia), Director
MEA employee, Sue McGrath was nominated as Company Secretary. Anne Jamieson, Chairperson of MEA commented, “I wish to thank our two outgoing Board members Ian Whitworth and Susan Ryman-Kiernan. Ian, for his guidance, commitment and dedication over the last four years. Ian has been a driving force behind MEA’s growth; displaying exceptional leadership under which MEA has evolved and now flourishes. I thank our outgoing Treasurer, Susan Ryman-Kiernan for her financial acumen, leadership, passion and commitment to MEA”. I welcome the return of Kate Smith from WALDRONSMITH Management and Alana Hay from Milestone Creative Australia to the Board and look forward to working closely with new Board member Michael Firman from Harry the hirer”. MEA’s CEO, Robyn Johnson also commented “MEA has been through a period of consolidation and growth and there is still a lot to be achieved. I am looking forward to working with the new MEA Board to launch new initiatives and programs in the year ahead”. Following the Board and Electoral Council meetings, the 2018 Annual General Meeting was conducted at UNSW Sydney Campus. Some important changes to the Constitution were ratified by members at this meeting. These changes will allow MEA to further grow and cement its position as the peak body for the meetings and events industry. Changes include:
  1. Disbanding of the Electoral Council – shifting the responsibility of voting incoming Board members to MEA members for the 2019 Board elections.
  2. A maximum six year term for any Board member, commencing in 2019, with the longest serving Board members to automatically step down after six years.
  3. Identifying and broadening the skills and expertise on the Board through a gap analysis and advertised roles. The Board may directly appoint up to two Directors with specialist skills, where an identified skills gap exists on the member-appointed Board.
  4. An increased Board size of up to seven Directors (from five) including the two Board-appointed positions.
  5. No requirement to be AFMEA as a Director of the Board.
As a result of the ratified Constitutional changes, the Board of Directors will conduct a gap and skills analysis and seek to appoint additional Board members with specialist skills from the membership. On the Constitutional changes, Chairperson Anne Jamieson commented, “It’s about a more transparent and robust process to Board appointments and broadening the skill set of the Board members with a greater talent pool that can continue to drive the association forward”. “With these changes, MEA will be able to attract and appoint the skills that are needed on the Board to build and grow the association”, she added. Other notable items in the Annual Report, tabled at the AGM included:
  • Following an audit of membership and elimination of lapsed members, MEA recorded a 7% increase in members. The forecast for the 2018/19 period will report a significantly stronger result as MEA moves forward with a clean baseline.
  • An extremely positive financial result of $278,000 profit for FY2017/18.
  • More than 54 events held in 2017/18, including 30 Professional Development sessions plus networking and awards events held nationally.
  • MEA was awarded a seven-year approval as a Registered Training Organisation by ASQA, making it the Australian event industry’s only membership organisation to offer Accredited quality training, with qualified trainers and assessors.
MEA CEO, Robyn Johnson was excited to announce the results, commenting, “Through the hard work, passion and persistence of MEA staff, more than 60 passionate and hard-working Branch members around the country, and with the guidance and hands-on approach provided by the Board, MEA has reported excellent growth, both financially and an increase in membership. It’s exciting to see existing members renewing plus many returning to MEA, as well as strong industry support through our Principal and Major Supporters and Partners. Through the support of our industry and community, MEA will continue to flourish and deliver excellent services and even more benefits to our members”. A copy of MEA’s Annual Report is available to members online. For more information on MEA’s educational, networking events, the upcoming national conference EVOLVE, or the benefits of becoming a MEA member, please visit