The Cost of Procrastination - MPI Minnesota

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					In This Issue:                                                        Ad Alert:

      President’s Message                                             Please note: the advertisements in
      Editor's Note                                                   this issue are live links to the
      MPI MN Board of Directors - OPEN POSITIONS                      advertisers’ Web sites or e-mail
      Meeting of the Minds Gossip Corner!                             addresses.
      MPI MN Member Personally Experienced the
      Benefits of a Ronald McDonald House                             St Paul River Centre
      What Else Are You Going to Do in January in
      UP CLOSE - Supplier Kurt Nelson                                 Wisconsin Dells
      UP CLOSE - Planner Theresa Link
      Have Passport, Will Travel                                      Radisson Hotel and Conference
      December CMP Questions                                          Center
      Thank You to Our Sponsor: PLDG
      New Members, Renewing Members
      Calendar at a Glance
      2007 - 2008 Chapter Officers, Committee Chairs,
      and Meeting of the Minds Staff

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President’s Message
The Cost of Procrastination
Jan Tolle MacDonald, CMP, CMM, Bloomington Convention & Visitors Bureau

                The following article is reprinted with the permission of Mercedes Ramirez Johnson. I
                heard Mercedes speak at an MPI conference a few years ago. I was very moved by
                her story: she is one of only four survivors of American Airlines Flight 965, which
                crashed into the Andes Mountains near Cali, Colombia, in December of 1995. I later
                invited Mercedes to speak at a conference that I was planning for a group of
                corporate travel managers. As I was sitting down to write this month’s president’s
                report - with total writer’s block, I came across this article from her newsletter. It
                couldn’t have been timelier for me so I hope you don’t mind that I’m sharing it with

   Jan Tolle    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

                               "There are many ways to avoid success in life,
                            but the most sure-fire just might be procrastination."
                                             - Hara Estroff Marano

                Procrastination costs.

                It can cost money, such as the revenue lost from a follow-up sale that's never
                made. It can cost you your health if you delay going to the doctor. It can cost fun
                times and memories by forever putting off a trip or vacation with friends. And it can
                cost you piece of mind when you live with the nagging feeling of unfinished tasks
and projects hanging over your head.

How did I choose this month's topic - procrastination?

As I sat down to write this ezine in a café in Houston, Texas, waiting for my new
passport to be processed down the street, I caught a glimpse of myself in the
mirror. There I was - red-eyed, crazy-haired and completely disheveled from driving
to Houston from Dallas at 4:30 in the morning - and I realized I was in this crisis
situation because of my procrastination.

If I'd taken the time to read the information packet about my upcoming
international trip when my client initially sent it, I would've known that I needed a
new passport. Instead, I finally got around to reading the requirements late one
Friday night just 12 days before my departure. That was when I discovered that my
passport wasn't going to work! Although my passport doesn't expire until February
2008, the Nicaraguan government doesn't allow anyone into the country whose
passport expires within the next six months. My exasperated scream from the study
woke my husband and sent him running to find out what was wrong.

Not one to give up easily, I found out I could get an expedited passport at a few
select federal passport offices. The closest office that offers the service is in
Houston, a five-hour drive from my home. So I quickly rearranged my schedule and
got myself to Houston at the first possible opportunity. And that is how I find myself
in a coffee shop in Houston, Texas, with time on my hands. So the topic of
procrastination is one that, as you might guess, I have a burning desire to talk
about today - because I know I'm not the only one who's guilty of procrastinating.

If I were to ask each of you what in your life you're procrastinating, I bet most of
you could name at least three things. Have you been putting off asking for a raise,
new projects or expanded responsibilities at work? Are you ignoring a nagging
health problem? Have you delayed going back to school for that advanced degree?
Is that half-finished home improvement project still staring you in the face every

Why do we procrastinate? Sometimes, the "what" explains the "why." Take income
taxes for example. Who wants to spend hours on tedious, complex paperwork to
determine how much of your money you have to give the government? It's easy to
see why so many people file the automatic extension! It's simply human nature to
procrastinate doing things that are unpleasant.

Psychological research points to other reasons for procrastination. Children with
overly controlling parents who don't allow them to make decisions on their own can
grow up to be procrastinating adults. Often times, the fear of failure causes us to
avoid, delay and stall. Then, when our backs are against the wall, we whip out a
half-baked solution and rationalize the outcome.

Working and living in Survival Mode legitimizes procrastination. Tending to other
responsibilities with deadlines makes it easy to push aside the bigger projects, the
more important responsibilities or the things you simply don't want to do. In
Survival Mode, being "too busy" with other things is always the excuse.

No matter the reason for procrastination, in the end, if something is important, it
has a way of embedding itself into our subconscious. It sits there, constantly talking
in the back of our mind, saying "Finish me! Take care of me!" The longer you
procrastinate, the louder and more insistent it becomes, "Hey, quit ignoring me!"

What are you procrastinating? Take a moment, close your eyes and listen.

How Sweet It Is!

The rewards and benefits you receive from not procrastinating and from getting
things done instead are truly priceless. No more insomnia over worrying about that
looming deadline. No more walking around stressed out because you have a 200-
pound gorilla on your back in the form of an unfinished report or analysis. No more
lame excuses to family members or friends about why you can't get together with
them. No more feeling guilty about all the things you know you should be doing.

Whew! I don't know about you, but that sounds great to me. And let me tell you, I
know a thing or two about procrastination and guilt.

When my parents celebrated 30 years of marriage, my sister and I weren't
prepared. As a college student, I had little money that didn't come directly from my
parents. And quite honestly, we were so busy with our own lives that we just
dropped the ball. My sister and I promised each other that we'd do something really
nice for our parents on their 35th anniversary. But their untimely death in the plane
crash in 1995 meant we never had another chance to throw them a party of a
lifetime - a party they deserved.

To say that I wish I hadn't made excuses, that I wish I hadn't procrastinated,
doesn't do my feelings justice. Take it from me - don't let today's procrastination
become tomorrow's regret.

Identify & Prioritize

Procrastination isn't about forgetting to do what needs to be done. It's intentionally
replacing your time with other activities. Let's use yours truly as an example. I
started writing my book full force more than two years ago. I got about halfway
finished and haven't written a page since. Why? I ask myself that same question a

You might be surprised to learn that it's not because I work more than 40 hours a
week (plus travel) and take care of a home, husband and two kids. It's because I've
intentionally replaced writing time with other activities. Whether it's volunteering at
the kids' school, catching up with friends or watching that Food Network marathon
to get recipes I'll never cook, I've chosen to spend my time doing other things
instead of finishing my book. These other choices aren't necessarily better or worse,
simply intentional.

How about you? Do you have a closet at home that's taken on a life of its own? Has
that stack of papers you need to go through been sitting on the desk so long that
it's collected dust? Is there someone you need to call or write, but you just haven't
taken the time to do it? Every time you see that closet, the pile of papers or that
certain someone's name, you know what you should do, but there's always
something else that needs to be done first, right? It's the old, "I'll get to that as
soon as I finish this or that."

Let's decide instead to be intentional about our priorities. First, decide today to start
saying "no" to doing things or taking on responsibilities that you truly do not want.
Those things you feel forced to do will be the ones you'll inevitably delay time and

Next, write down on paper everything you are procrastinating, from the small things
(like organizing the hall closet) to the big things (such as setting up a college
savings fund for Junior). Now, prioritize the list, numbering the most important
and/or urgent item "#1" and so on. Start with your highest priority item and commit
to completing it. Force yourself to finish that item before working on any other
projects. Then tackle the next highest priority and finish it, gradually working your
way down your prioritized list. It takes discipline, so stick with it.

Identifying and prioritizing your procrastination issues is crucial because it puts
things in perspective and forces you to focus on the most significant issues. Sure,
the closet is crammed to the ceiling, and every time you open it you run the risk of
something tumbling down from a shelf and knocking you out. But when compared to
starting that college fund or going in for your annual physical, the truth is that it just
doesn't matter as much. The messy closet will still be there weeks or months from
now when you've knocked off the more important items on your list.

Break It Down

One of the primary reasons people procrastinate is because the task they're facing
                 seems overwhelming. It's so big or complex or time consuming, it's just too
                 daunting to start. Truth be told, I likely procrastinate finishing my book because it
                 seems like a monumental task. I rationalize that if I have only 45 minutes or an
                 hour to spare, I'm not going to accomplish much anyway, so why work on it?

                 The solution is to break these big projects down into smaller chunks and tackle them
                 one at a time. You may be thinking, "Duh! I know that!" Yes, but do you do it?!
                 Knowing and doing are two different things! If everyone who knew this actually did
                 it, none of us would ever put anything off or wait until the last minute. Completing
                 smaller pieces of a bigger task gives you a sense of accomplishment, keeps you
                 moving forward and creates momentum to start the next piece.

                 You may also be thinking, "Why don't you follow your own advice, Mercedes, and
                 get that book written one chapter - or even one page - at a time?" Touché!

                 Copyright Mercedes Ramirez Johnson. For more information visit

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Editor's Note
From the Editor
John Cosgrove, Cosgrove Trivia Challenge

                 A very warm welcome to the last Meeting of the Minds for the year. We are right in the
                 middle of another busy holiday season where the balancing skills of work, shop and play
                 come to the fore. It is also a time to reflect on the year that has gone by and look with
                 renewed hope and excitement towards 2008.

                 We have a very full and exciting newsletter this month. Our chapter has partnered with
                 the Ronald McDonald House for a number of years; this month we are delighted to
                 include a personal story of member Cheryl Gilbertson, who stayed there while her
                 granddaughter was having surgery to remove a brain tumor. You can get full details of
                 her discussion with Jane Steck in this issue. This personal account helps clearly
 John Cosgrove   demonstrate the stellar work of the Ronald McDonald House and why our chapter’s
                 continued support is so strongly encouraged.

                 Elsewhere, Stephanie Pfeilsticker explains how traveling between the United States and
                 Canada as well as Mexico will prove a little more tricky in the new year as new passport
                 requirements come into force. This informative piece will serve our members well and
                 recalls an incident involving a trip to Canada. A must read!

                 A big thank-you to all our contributors this month and a heads up for contributions from
                 our scholarship winners in the New Year. We are always looking for members to tell us
                 their story and how it can help inform fellow chapter members. This is also a time to
                 reflect on your wider contribution to your local chapter and maybe a good time to join a
                 committee or if you are on a committee, go for that leadership position. There has never
                 been a better time than now!

                 Happy Holidays!

                 Slán go foil

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MPI MN Board of Directors - OPEN POSITIONS

There are currently three open positions on MPI MN's Board of Directors. If you are interested in being
considered for appointment to any of these open positions or if you have additional questions, please
contact the Chair of the Nominating Committee Michael Bergman at or
612.397.4934 no later than Monday, December 17, 2007.

Available Positions

Vice President, Leadership Development: This will be a new position on the Board available if the bylaw
changes are approved. The term of this position would be January 1, 2008 - June 30, 2008.

Director, Leadership Development: This will be a new position on the board available if the bylaw changes
are approved. The term of this position would be January 1, 2008 - June 30, 2008. The individual would
then serve an additional year moving into the VP, Leadership Development role from July 1, 2008 - June
30, 2009.

Director, Communications: This position was opened as of the November board meeting. The term of this
position would be January 1, 2008 - June 30, 2008. The individual would then serve an additional year
moving into the VP, Communications role from July 1, 2008 - June 30, 2009.

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Meeting of the Minds Gossip Corner!

We are always delighted to hear of any personal announcements within our chapter membership and now
we want you to share it with everyone!

If you (or a fellow member you know) is getting married, given birth or celebrating a life milestone that
would be of interest to fellow members, we would love to hear about it!

Send your news to and it will be included in the next edition.

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MPI MN Member Personally Experienced the Benefits of a Ronald McDonald
Jane Steck and Cheryl Gilbertson

This is the second year the MPI MN Community Outreach Committee has
partnered with the Twin Cities Ronald McDonald House, facilitating projects
such as the piggybank collections to renovate and decorate, Cooks for Kids, and
the Holiday Giving Tree. Imagine the surprise at a recent committee meeting
when members discovered that MPI member Cheryl Gilbertson has experienced
the benefits of the Ronald McDonald House first hand. She shares the details of
this challenging time in the interview below:

Why did you and your family spend time at the Denver Ronald
McDonald House?

Our 4-year-old granddaughter, Camille, had surgery to remove a large tumor
from her brain (on the cerebellum). It was thought to be cancer but turned out
it was not. However she was hospitalized for two weeks and it was a very
complicated and invasive surgery.

What were some of the challenges for you and your family during this
difficult time?

Our son and daughter-in-law lived in Colorado Springs, but the surgery was in Denver at the Children’s
Hospital. We all had to stay in Denver to be near the hospital and our loved ones. This way we could help
relieve the parents at different times for meals and etc.

The most important thing was to take care of Camille's little sister Sydney during this traumatic time. My
husband and I flew to Denver very quickly on my daughter-in-law’s suggestion and we went straight to
the Ronald McDonald House to stay until the initial surgery was over and we had time to find a hotel room
close to the hospital.

What are some of the services the Ronald McDonald House provided that you and your family
found particularly helpful?

The house was very inviting, the staff so friendly and kind. Everyone seemed to embrace us and went out
of their way to make us comfortable. It was a quiet, peaceful environment and the guest rooms very
comfortable. We were amazed at how our son and daughter-in-law could take turns going to our guest
room at Ronald McDonald house to take a nap or just get a snack and relax during the long days of
recovery after the surgery.

Our family could gather together in the common areas to just be together, or we could go to the massive
kitchen and take part in the complimentary meals that were donated each day by another charitable
organization or corporation. There was also a huge refrigerator and freezer stuffed full of food and ice
cream desserts not to mention the hundreds of boxes of cookies and donuts in the kitchen all the time.
The most amazing thing was the volunteers who cooked meals on a regular basis. This was such a
comfort to all who stayed at the house.

Our favorite area was the playroom. We took our little Sydney there for playtime every day and she had
lots of fun with all the other children staying there, most of whom were there to have procedures done at
the hospital on a daily basis. You would never know that these little kids were sick because they were
having so much fun. However in your heart you knew they were poked with needles and put through
some rigorous situations on a routine basis.

How do you think we as a chapter can make a difference for the Twin Cities Ronald McDonald

Continue to volunteer on a regular basis. Cooking meals, cleaning, gardening, etc. Also raising money for
them in any way we can. It would have been a hardship for our family to stay in a hotel for over two
weeks. However the Ronald McDonald House made everything possible to bear during this hard time. The
cost to stay was less than half the cost of a hotel and the convenience of the house's close proximity to
the hospital was so important to us. Not to mention the cost of food while staying there was next to
nothing due to the donations. It was so nice not to worry about expenses during this time.

Why did you decide to join the MPI Community Outreach Committee?

When I heard about the work the MPI Community Outreach Committee is doing in support of Ronald
McDonald House I wanted to join in order to "pay back" and do my part for other families who are in need
of the warm embrace and tender loving care that our family received 5 years ago.

How is your granddaughter doing now?

Our granddaughter is doing terrific; she is at the head of her class and has no ill effects today. Her eyes
were severely crossed before the surgery, and now her eyes are perfectly straight and she does not have
to wear glasses. She is seen by her doctors every 6 months for a scan of her brain to make sure the
tumor hasn't returned. Doctor Handler will always be our hero, and we will forever be thankful for God's
blessing and the miracle of a healthy grandchild today.

Is there anything else you want to include for this article?

Thank you for letting me share our story with the MPI MN. I want to thank MPI for reaching out to the
community in so many ways!

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What Else Are You Going to Do in January in Minnesota?

Help support the Ronald McDonald House by bringing your donations to the January MPI
Monthly Meeting - Drop off at the Community Outreach Table.

       canned food (fruit, veges,        snacks (granola,              paper cups, bowls, plates
       soup)                             fruit, popcorn, juice         dish towels
       facial tissue                     boxes)                        gift cards/certificates
       bedding/blankets                  dishwasher soap               plastic utensils
       boxed food (mac &                 (powder)                      sanitizing cloths
       cheese, cake mix, meals)          batteries (all sizes)         phone cards
       toilet paper                      styrofoam to-go               paper towels/napkins
       wash cloths/towels                boxes                         cleaning supplies (bleach, wet
       individual size cereal            garbage bags (13 &            mops/refills, cleaners)
       (ramen noodles)                   33 gal)                       food storage (plastic wrap,
       laundry soap (powder)             tickets to special            baggies, foil, disposable
       pots/pans                         events                        containers)
       furniture polish                  cooking utensils              DVDs (family-oriented)

All items MUST be new for the health & safety of the families. If you have any questions, please contact
Kelly Hackathorn or Kelly Cornwell

Your support is deeply appreciated.

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                      Supplier Member Up Close
                      Kurt Nelson, President, The Lantern Group

                      How did you get to your current position?
                      I started The Lantern Group in 1997 and have held this ever since. Prior to that I
                      worked for BI and was the manager of the Integrated Conference Design group.

                       What is your current job description?
                       My title is president but in a small company like ours that really means that I have
                       to be the jack of all trades. Most of our work is in developing and motivating people.
                       My job is to oversee the big picture with our clients in developing out our programs
                       - whether those are teambuilding programs, training sessions, strategic planning
sessions or our incentive compensation work. But then of course I get my hands dirty and have the
pleasure of actually doing the work as well.

What has been your greatest professional challenge?
The balance of trying to resource our growing business with the talented people that we have. A friend of
mine told me the maxim “hire slow and fire fast.” We live by that in order to ensure that we have the
right people on both full time and as contractors. However it sometimes means that we have more work
that we have to do ourselves since we don’t hire just to fill a position.

In your past job history, has anything happened that was unexpected?
We gained one of our biggest clients because they lost a large and expensive piece of our teambuilding
equipment. The client had borrowed the equipment through a mutual acquaintance and then when we
went to get it back, they couldn’t find it. Over the course of a few months and many calls they ended up
paying for it but we had also developed a relationship and now they are a great customer of ours.

How long have you been in MPI and what have you learned since becoming a member?
I joined a little over a year ago. I’ve learned that there are a lot of very smart and experienced people in
MPI and that I need to tap into their expertise even more than we currently do.

What is something you would like to share with us about your personal life?
I am happily married to another MPI member – Erin Sjoquist (she was actually the one who got me
interested in MPI). We have a wonderful 2 year old son named Quinn and enjoy the very little free time
we get to spend together as a family.

Coordinated by Diane Pearson, CMP, Event Biz Niz

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                      Planner Member Up Close
                      Theresa Link , CMP, Senior Manager of Conference Planning,
                      Woodbury Financial Services

                      How did you get to your current position?
                      I began doing meetings and events for a private company more than 16 years ago.
                      I then joined BI and for seven years worked in their Incentive Delivery group as a
                      program manager. I loved working for BI, but two years ago I decided I wanted to
                      expand my role into a more strategic focus on meetings and events, and I wanted
                      to work for one organization. I joined Woodbury Financial Services, a subsidiary of
The Hartford, in 2005 as a conference planner working on Woodbury’s annual sales conference and annual
incentive program. Since that time, we have significantly expanded the number of events that we are
managing and we have added two additional conference planners. I am currently the senior manager of
conference planning.

What is your current job description?
In my current position, I oversee all conference activities for our annual events. In addition, I manage the
conference planning team and work with them on the strategy and coordination of 20+ additional events.
As a team, we are responsible for developing, budgeting, marketing, and all logistical planning for these
corporate events.

What has been your greatest professional challenge?
My biggest ongoing challenge is continuing to provide new and exciting conferences and meetings that are
unique and create energy for the attendees.

In your past job history, has anything happened that was unexpected?
Unexpected? Every day brings something unexpected which is one of the things that I most love about my
position and about this industry. Just when you think you might know it all, you are brought back to
humility with an event or challenge that you haven’t faced before. These unexpected challenges make
every day, every event, and every interaction different than the one before.

How long have you been in MPI and what have you learned since becoming a member?
I joined MPI shortly after joining Woodbury Financial in 2005. The monthly meetings are an excellent
networking and educational opportunity. In addition, I’ve often had to call upon fellow MPI members for
resources and advice and this has been invaluable to me in continuing to accomplish objectives for our
meetings and events. I received my CMP in 2006 through the help of many MPI friends and resources. In
addition, I am attending the MPI Institute in Toronto at the end of October this year and will be working
towards my CMM certification. I believe that ongoing education is vitally important to maintaining my
meeting planning career and MPI helps me to achieve my educational goals.

What is something you would like to share with us about your personal life?
I have been married for 18 years. My husband, John, is a builder in Shakopee where I have lived all my
life. Together, we share a daughter who is 17 (Mollie) and my step-daughter who is 21 (Jennifer). I love
to travel, spend time with my family, and shop (not necessarily in that order)!

Coordinated by Diane Pearson, CMP, Event Biz Niz

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Have Passport, Will Travel
Steph Pfeilsticker, CMP
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans

Make a run for the border…just don’t forget your passport! It is crucial to stay abreast of international
passport regulations when it comes to planning. The Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative has stated that
by the summer of 2008, all travelers between the U.S. and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean
region will be required to have a passport to enter the country via land or air. Currently, anyone traveling
by air is required to present a passport or other valid travel document to enter or re-enter the United

How does this affect your meeting? Early and often notification of this requirement to your attendees is
critical as ample time is needed to apply for a passport. Surveys have indicated that the majority of
Americans are not aware of this relatively new requirement. The initial barrage of applications has
somewhat subsided with anticipations of longer waiting periods prior to the summer of 2008 requirement.
It is important to keep in mind that the number of passport applications is seasonal with longer waiting
periods between January and July.

With the advent of requiring passports to enter Canada, there is now a bevy of information available to
customs officials through the passport system. Canada has stricter laws for certain crimes than we do in
the U.S. and can prevent entry for non-Canadians with criminal convictions and felony convictions which
include driving under the influence (DUI). This is not a new law, but rather the information is now readily
available due to the electronic nature of the passport system. Contact the Canadian Consulate for detailed
information regarding your meeting or specific attendee situations that may preclude meeting attendance.

As planners, it is imperative to stay alerted to the State Department’s website for changes as this is a
very fluid topic in our ever-changing world. Visit for complete information so that you are
prepared for your next international meeting or event.

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December CMP questions
Getting a Reaction
Denise Woods, CMP, AGC of Minnesota

The following questions are from the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) Boot Camp study manual. They
are intended to give you a feel for what this exam contains. For more information about earning your
CMP, please visit In the meantime, test your
knowledge of the meeting industry.

1. The planning committee for an upcoming meeting is concerned that a Q&A session following the
keynote speaker’s address will not work well with the audience. The best format to consider is:

a)    Utilize an Audience Reaction Team
b)    Eliminate Q&A altogether
c)    Have confidence that the audience will ask questions
d)    Utilize a buzz group format

2. A program planning committee is concerned about their ability to attract attendance at the next
convention, to be held in San Francisco. It is imperative that the convention has attendance of at least
4,000 people. In order to meet this goal, the promotional materials should focus on:

a)   Highlighting recreation and tours to the wine country
b)   The importance of each member’s attendance to support the association
c)   Highlighting the educational and business sessions
d)   Highlighting the benefits of the host hotels


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Thank You to Our Sponsor: Peggy Lauritsen Design Group

Peggy Lauritsen Design Group is an award-winning communications firm dedicated to providing
clients with a unique blend of strategy and inspiring design. We specialize in event communications
design including event branding & identity, concept & theme, marketing communications (invitations, rsvp
reminders, web ads & banners, email blasts) and wayfinding signage.

For 27 years, Peggy Lauritsen Design Group has served a diverse group of clients, from leading
organizations and entrepreneurs to Fortune 500 companies and public institutions. Our clients include
Medtronic, UnitedHealthcare, American Medical Systems, PLATO Learning, and Hazelden. See our work
online at or call 612-623-4200.

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New Members                                            Renewed Members Continued...
Please welcome the new members of MPI MN.
The following people have joined since the last        Kelly Koep
newsletter. Check the online directory for full        Sales Manager
contact information.                                   Minneapolis Apirport Marriott
                                                       Phone: (952) 851-4741
Winnie Chan                                  
Sales Manager
Sutton Place Hotel                                     Jodi Kopka
Phone: (604) 642-2992                                  Crowne Meetings Director                                  Crowne Plaza
                                                       Phone: (952) 345-1245
Dianne Larson                                
Registration Specialist
Medtronic, Inc.                                        Tami LaPole
Phone: (763) 526-1006                                  Minnesuing Acres Sales Manager                           Minnesuing Acres
                                                       Phone: (218) 727-1328
Jenna Lowe                                   
Phone: (612) 868-2060                         Beverly Malcolm
Erica Thiel                                            The Meeting Authority, Inc.
Phone: (763) 569-2800                                  Phone: (612) 333-9091                       

Bridget Walthers                                       Amy Meuers
Sales Manager/Coordinator                              Conference Director
Cragun's Resort & Legacy Courses                       National Youth Leadership Council
Phone: (218) 825-2856                                  Phone: (651) 999-7363                        

                                                       Peggi Monico
                                                       Regional Director of Sales
                                                       Madison Hospitality
Renewing Members                                       Phone: (651) 739-8532
Please welcome the renewing members of
MPI MN. The following people have renewed since
the last newsletter. Check the online directory for
full contact information.                              Kristin Nauman
                                                       Meeting Planner
Linda Allen                               Piper Jaffray
Marketing Manager                         Phone: (612) 303-6677
Opus Northwest, LLC             
Phone: (952) 656-4814                  Marlene Novak
                                          Senior Sales Manager
Cathy Berg                                Doubletree Hotel Minneapolis Park Place
Director, Meetings & Conventions          Phone: (952) 582-5306
ACA International               
Phone: (952) 928-8000                 Dawn Olson-Wallerus
                                          Convention Services Manager
Mary Ellen Brennan                        The Depot, A Renaissance Hotel
Account Executive                         Phone: (612) 758-7894
B&B Productions                 
Phone: (651) 285-4377                  Amy Parod
                                          Director of Sales
Barbara Crushshon                         Arrowwood Resort & Conference Center
Sales Manager                             Phone: (320) 759-5020
Sheraton Minneapolis Midtown Hotel
Phone: (612) 821-7607        Casey Romano
Lori Finney                               Mighty Dog Media/Meetingpages
Director, Meeting Planning                Phone: (952) 233-1195
Thomson North American Legal    
Phone: (651) 848-5570                   Tim Samuelson
Jenelle Hewitt                            Promotion Select, Inc.
Director of Sales                         Phone: (952) 470-6166
Craguns Conference Center & Golf Resort
Phone: (218) 825-2850                       Sara Stark Mikolich
Laurie Hollinger                          The Stark Group, Inc.
Director of Business Development          Phone: (763) 497-2067
Mosquito Inc.                   
Phone: (612) 374-4013               Stephanie Wilkinson
                                          Conference Planner
Vicki Juntti                              RBC Capital Markets
Program & Event Planner                   Phone: (612) 371-2721
Phone: (952) 294-2845                    Jon Young
                                          Music Director & Manager
Linda Kilcher                             Temporary Heroes Orchestra
Education Specialist                      Phone: (612) 224-9591
Medtronic, Inc.                 
Phone: (763) 526-1011

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Calendar at a Glance

Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Monthly Meeting: 2007 Holiday Party
Location: The Depot, Minneapolis, MN
Wednesday, January 16, 2007
Monthly Meeting: How to Create Action in Your E-Mail Communications
Location: St. Paul RiverCentre, St. Paul, MN

Wednesday, February 20, 2008
KnowledgeQuest 2008
Location: Earle Brown Heritage Center, Brooklyn Center, MN

See the complete MPI MN calendar of events.

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Board of Directors 2007-2008                         Meeting of the Minds Staff

Executive Committee                                  Editor
                                                     John Cosgrove
President                                            Cosgrove Trivia Challenge
Jan Tolle MacDonald, CMP, CMM                        Phone: (612) 483-2606
Bloomington MN CVB                                   E-mail:

President Elect                                      Production
Ann Margaret Young                                   MPI MN Office
The Depot
                                                     Meeting Professionals International is the
Immediate Past President                             association for the global meetings industry and
Michael Bergman                                      is committed to delivering success for its 21,000
Minneapolis Hilton                                   worldwide members by providing innovative
                                                     professional development, generating industry
                                                     awareness and creating business development
Vice President of Communications                     opportunities. Founded in 1972, the Dallas-
Terrie Maley                                         based organization delivers success through
ConferenceDirect                                     its 68 chapters and clubs in 20 countries around
                                                     the world. For more information, visit
Vice President of Education                
Ellie Madson, CMP
ACA International

Vice President of Finance
                                                     MPI Chapter Offices
Jaimie Mattes
HelmsBriscoe Performance Group
                                                     Minnesota Office
                                                     Meeting Professionals International
Vice President of Membership
                                                     1821 University Avenue West, Suite S256
Liz Vardaman, CMP
                                                     St. Paul, Minnesota 55104-2897
                                                     Phone: (651) 917-6243
                                                     Fax: (651) 917-1835
Board Members                              
Director of Community Outreach
Erin Feeney                                          International Headquarters
Embassy Suites Airport/Bloomington                   3030 LBJ Freeway, Ste 1700
                                                     Dallas, Texas, U.S.A. 75234-2759
Director of Education                                Phone: 1-972-702-3000
Brooke Stoeckel                                      Fax: 1-972-702-3000
Visit Minneapolis North                    

Director of Finance
Marilyne Bouteiller, DOS
Millenium Hotel Minneapolis                          Editorial Information:
Director of Membership       Meeting of the Minds is the official publication of
Doug Gillam                  the Meeting Professionals International Minnesota
                             chapter and is published 11 times yearly.
Association Manager          Statements of fact and opinion within this
Maria Huntley                newsletter are the responsibility of individual
Nonprofit Solutions, Inc.    writers and do not necessarily reflect the opinion
                             of the officers or members of MPI. Articles
                             submitted are subject to editorial revisions.
                             Articles for the November issue of Meeting of the
Chairs 2007-2008             Minds are due to the editor by 5 p.m. on
                             Wednesday, December 19.
Public Relations External
Blaze Driscoll               Advertising information can be found on the MPI
Victoria Marley              MN Website.

Public Relations Internal
John Cosgrove

Hanna Werner

Membership Recruitment
Sue Hussman, CMP

Membership Retention
Ann Ruehling

Juli Wagner

Student Membership Chair
Rosealee Lee

Jessica Miller

Staci Kvasnik
Dawn Olson-Wallerus
Sean Schuette

WLI (Education)
Marcia McKinney

CMP (Education)
Denise Woods, CMP

KnowledgeQuest (Education)
Stephanie Ripley

Community Outreach
Debra Bequette
Emily Nelson

Ellie Hughes
Kelly Kellin

Leslie Skyrms
Tracey Smith
Past Presidents

Michael Bergman, 2007
Lora Gray, CMP, 2006
Dianna Fuller, CMP, 2005
Mary Medcraft, 2004
Denise Woods, CMP, 2003
Sydney Zech, CMP, 2002
Peggy Westby, CMP, 2000
Tim Samuelson, 1998
Kim Granger, CMP, 1997
Mark Israel, CMP, CHSP, 1996
Deborah Taylor, 1995
Kathy Hedlund, 1994
Barbara Louis, CMP, 1993
Kevin Johnston, CMP, 1992
Roger Keller, 1991
Bonita Wallin, 1990
Julie McEnroe, 1989
Wendy Wurr, 1988
Jim Kottmeier, 1987
Kim Jarvis, 1986
Claudia Wilson, 1985
Wendy Zarchek, 1983
Kathy Johnson, 1982
June Kehneman, 1981
Dick Graber, 1980
Steve Karbon, 1979

MPI MN National Awards

Meeting of the Minds Chapter Newsletter Awards:

2002-2003 Best Overall Online Newsletter - More
than 250 Members

2001-2002 Honorable Mention

2000- 2001 Best Design – More than 250

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