Bruce is GEM’s founder and owner, has spent over 30 years helping scientific and trade associations achieve success. He has worked on five continents in every aspect of conference and exhibition management, and since founding GEM in 2002 has established a wide-ranging network of professionals in the MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) industry whom he calls upon as both suppliers and partners in executing each project.
Bruce is active in his own professional association, the International Association of Exhibitions & Events (IAEE), as a committee member, editor, and worldwide course instructor in onsite operations (including floor management), risk management, security, floor plan development, and event sales fundamentals. He holds the IAEE’s Certification in Exhibition Management (CEM) and is a recipient of their Merit Award.
Like the rest of the team, Michelle has more than 30 years of worldwide corporate and association meeting planning expertise, having handled A-to-Z logistics in the US, Canada, South and Central America, and Europe. Michelle is a Senior Conference Manager with ConferenceDirect (CD), one of the largest site selection/hotel booking service providers in the nation. CD books over five million hotel room nights a year, and Michelle’s affiliation with CD puts her in position to negotiate excellent room rates and contract terms in any venue for any meeting.
AT NO CHARGE TO YOU THE CLIENT, she can prepare a comprehensive RFP for hotels and convention venues that meet your search criteria and, from that information, will provide a detailed price/facility document for your review and selection. Michelle oversees GEM’s comprehensive event management solution, with a focus on hotel room-night contracting and management.
MICHELLE GENTZEN, CCM
BRUCE LEMMON, CEM
With separate careers that span decades, there is little if anything the principal members of the GEM team haven’t seen. Initially in management together in the American Association of Petroleum Geologists’ (AAPG) convention department, we reunited ten years ago to offer independent event management services under the GEM banner. While those services still form the backbone of what GEM has to offer, we also recognize that few individuals in the industry have the expertise necessary to provide our unique level of strategic problem-solving, particularly when it comes to international events. GEM’s focus has shifted toward working with corporate and association event organizers to dream big. What GEM can deliver in terms of concept development, training, RFPs, risk analysis, registration and other key service solutions, hotel room block management, contract negotiations, budget formulation, day-to-day consulting to leadership, and onsite supervision, will allow your organization to see your conferences, conventions and exhibitions to grow and thrive.
SONDRA BIGGS, CMP
Upon taking early retirement from the American Academy of Family Physicians after 34 years in convention management at three associations Sondra joined GEM after returning to Tulsa, Oklahoma. With AAFP, she introduced innovations to the MDs’ annual scientific assembly such as customized exhibitor guides, sponsored welcome banners, shuttle banners, key packets, preregistration mailing kits, cyber cafés and mobile device beaming stations, bringing hundreds of thousands of new dollars into the revenue stream.
During her years with the Petroleum Geologists, she effectively refocused the Association’s near-exclusively domestic meeting schedule to include at least one international conference and exhibition annually. Her career has been marked by fostering creative ways to enhance the bottom line while continuing to build on the quality of each successive event. At GEM, her supervisory roles extend to contractor liaison and oversight, exhibitor services, and volunteer and onsite staff coordination.