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Having more than 20 years of experience in event management (10+ of them with the Agenda Managers team), it only makes sense that, for me, LIFE is an event.
I approach everything—personally and professionally—with a list (or three; colour‑coded of course), a logistics plan, and an eye for trouble‑shooting problems before they start. From organizing my own birthday parties in my early years, to the move into my first house, or a fundraiser with 2,500 attendees, I am always thinking about the set‑up, the tear‑down, and the lessons learned for next time. My perfect day is when I get to combine my left and right brains to blow the socks off of a creative event idea, with flawless execution.
Managing events (and being the mother of a six‑year‑old) has taught me to juggle multiple projects while still maintaining the finest of details. I think strategically and logically about what needs to come next and how to achieve the goal at hand effectively and efficiently.
I’m a Saint Mary’s University graduate, with degrees in both Commerce (Marketing) and the Arts (Psychology). Throughout my career I have always had a passion for charitable work and have volunteered and worked with the Savoy Theatre, Laing House, the Abilities Foundation of Nova Scotia, and Habitat for Humanity.
I am a clean up queen. I really get a charge out of making order out of chaos. I spent my entire childhood rearranging my room and reorganizing my things. I was the first person in my small world to bring in pieces of wood to make shelves in my locker so that I could be better organized. And I was delighted the day I discovered a ten pack of different coloured highlighters at Staples. I make lists – things to do, groceries to buy, books to read, household chores. I make sub‑lists. I even list my errands and then number them geographically so that I can do them all with the least amount of travel. And then cross things off those lists. Strange? Maybe. Satisfying? Absolutely! It’s just how I’m wired.
It’s no surprise I became an accountant. A Dalhousie graduate in Commerce, I earned a CPA designation in 1992 working with Ernst & Young in Halifax. I left E&Y in 1995 to work in industry. During that time, I also started providing accounting services on the side. In 2002, I took the plunge and started working for myself full‑time. Over the last 25 years, I have developed a wonderful group of clients that support me as much as I support them. They allowed me to work flexibly and from home so that I could accommodate all my daughter’s activities throughout her school years.
When asked if I was interested in working with Agenda Managers, I initially said no as it meant working on site. Why would I rock my lovely floating boat! Changing my mind and saying yes has provided hours of fun with a group of amazing women. Best decision ever!
I strongly believe in giving back to my community. Over the years I have been involved with Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Discovery Centre, Girl Guides of Canada, Sacred Heart School of Halifax, Saint Thomas Aquinas Canadian Martyrs Parish, Halifax Transition House Association and Halifax Junior Bengal Lancers.
I also believe in the pursuit of challenge and learning. Reading provides endless opportunities to go down the rabbit hole everyday in search of something new. Riding a horse has brought new meaning to challenge when you are over fifty. Trying to learn Spanish has brought a new appreciation for my aging brain.
Staging a winning event is about meeting clearly defined objectives. Running a successful event business is about gathering a team of enthusiastic, open minded, skilled and creative people who are willing to push every limit to not only meet the objectives, but work with clients to exceed them.
As Founder and President of Agenda Managers Inc., with more than 30 years in this business, I have talked more people into doing new and different things than I could have ever dreamed of. Every day, I get to sell an idea, move a mountain to make it happen and convince clients, suppliers and my own team that it is doable. Of course, I count on my specialists here to ensure that every "t" is crossed . . . but that is why we make such a great team.
I wake up every day, excited about what is in store—on the edge of my seat to get to go play at the office. And I was thrilled to have my hard work and enthusiasm earn me a Women of Excellence Award in Entrepreneurship and Innovation from the Halifax Progress Club.
My greatest joy comes from family, but coming to work every day is a pretty close second! Giving back to the community is also a passion and I have served as the Past President of the Board of Directors of Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia, done two three‑year terms as a member of the Board of Directors for the Greater Halifax YMCA, and completed a term on the Board of Directors of Destination Halifax. I have also been an active volunteer with the Halifax Hospice Society, Feed Nova Scotia, Laing House, and many other organizations. I am currently preparing to become a volunteer doula.
I have a Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations from Mount Saint Vincent University and have completed a variety of industry‑specific courses, including those offered by Dalhousie Continuing Education, NSCC, Meeting Professionals International, the American and Canadian Societies of Association Executives, Priority Management, and the Canadian Management Institute.
I’m proud to be a member of the senior management team for Agenda Managers. With more than 25 years of experience, in the meeting and event management business, my organization, communication, negotiation and leadership skills allow me to satisfy diverse client requirements.
I have a great understanding of the big picture and an extensive knowledge of putting things together with flawless precision. I have brought my talents to trade shows, not‑for‑profit events, conferences, golf tournaments, corporate and high‑end social events, with attendance ranging from 30 – 1,000 people. My experience provides me with a wealth of information to share with the client, which ultimately translates into a smooth, calm and efficient planning process.
Details. Details. Details.
Large ones, small ones, ever changing ones. There is nothing more exhilarating than a robust to‑do list, prioritized by dates and categories. This may not make for scintillating conversation at dinner parties but it does make me really good at my job. And after 25 years, I have a very elaborate colour‑coding system. No matter what the size of the event, or the scope of work, anything is possible with a keen eye for the details and limitless imagination. Throw in the creation of a defining moment—when we make your vision a reality—and voila, an event that will exceed your expectations. And come to think of it, I am pretty fun at dinner parties too.
I hold a Bachelor of Public Relations from Mount Saint Vincent University and a Bachelor of Arts with a major in psychology from Dalhousie University. I have served on volunteer committees for Mermaid Theatre, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Nova Scotia, Ward Five Community Centre and the IWK. I’m a member of Meeting Professionals International and have completed various training programs and courses specific to the meetings and event management sector. For fun, when we are not hosting our huge family and friends at our Lake House in the valley, you will find me in the garden or lost in the pages of a good book!
As the database manager for Agenda Managers I provide registration, administrative, and data management support for all of our clients. Our team has worked closely with a software developer to create a customized, secure online registration and abstract submission system along with several upgrades over the years to enhance the event registration experience. I am extensively trained on the Agenda Managers online registration system and bring 15+ years of organizational and administrative experience to the team.
I am a chronic To‑Do’er—and if you aren’t familiar, that’s someone who can’t sleep, eat, or do anything really, without a trusty to‑do list at their side. I go all in. I give it my all and am not satisfied until I have perfected the task at hand.
In my role at Agenda, I connect with every attendee at every event. Whether I am processing their registration, arranging their special meal or reminding them to bring a jacket, by the time I am done with them, I know they are prepared to have the best possible event experience. And really, if I happen to mention the joy of a post event trip to Cape Breton, aren’t I just providing a value‑added service?
This is the ideal job for me. Where else can I combine my obsession for detail management with my desire to help people every day!
Before joining the Agenda Managers team in 2006, I worked as an Admissions Officer and Financial Counselor at Mactech Distance Education in Cape Breton. I’m a graduate of the Cape Breton Business College with a diploma in Office Administration and of Mactech Distance Education with a diploma in PC Support and Customer Service. My volunteer work includes Habitat for Humanity, Symphony Nova Scotia, IWK, Laing House, and FEED NOVA SCOTIA.
My To‑Do List
Make a To‑Do list for the day
Notice I made one last night
Make new list combining both lists
Make another list based on best order to do tasks
Do some of the tasks
Cross items off list
Decide crossed off list is now too messy
Make neater list
At day’s end – make list for tomorrow
Kiss my children good night (and my husband 😊)
Go to bed – turn off light
Remember another to‑do item
Turn on light – add to list
Next day – repeat above