The 56th annual International Association of Movers Conference has just taken place in Washington DC. EuRA CEO Tad Zurlinden and COO Dom Tidey have been invited as special guests for the past two years and it’s been a great opportunity to build a relationship with the organisation and its members. Many other EuRA members attend this event as it is the largest and most prestigious in the household goods calendar. Held in the absolutely vast Gaylord Convention Centre in National Harbor Maryland, the event was host to over 1500 delegates. The venue was incredible and as conference organisers ourselves, dwarfs the capacities we’re able to use in Europe. The main ballroom was set up to host a banquet breakfast for every delegate and the exhibition space hosted 150 stands. But get this, that was less than one third of the capacity of the venues convention spaces!
For Terry Head the 56th convention marks his last as President and CEO of the association. Terry took the leadership of what was the the Household Goods Forwarders Association of America in 1997 and over the past 21 years has moulded the organisation into the global powerhouse it is today. The conference theme was very fittingly, Monuments (we were in DC the national capital after all) Memories and Milestones and there have certainly been some of those!
Under Terry’s impressive leadership the association has grown and matured to provide its members with an enviable raft of services and expertise. Initiatives such as RRP, the Receivable Protection Programme give the IAM membership the peace of mind to know that should another member cease trading while owing money across the network, IAM has the resources to step in and cover unpaid invoices. The fantastic IMX Mobility Exchange hooks the members together across the globe not just with each other in terms of a totally validated professional listing, but with mobility providers in all sectors and locations.
Terry’s work with IAM will be handed to Charles “Chuck” White. Over the past 5 years Terry, Chuck and the Executive Board have implemented a detailed succession plan to keep the association firmly on track so a seamless transition of leadership can take place. We are delighted that both Chuck and Terry will join us in Munich in April and we are also very excited about the prospect of our two organisations collaborating on new projects. We are looking at ways to use the IMX Mobility Exchange as a platform that could benefit EuRA Members and also at ways in which we could work together on research and professional development.
One of the things that has changed over the past two decades that I’ve been involved in mobility is the increase in collaboration with industry partners across the world. We are definitely stronger together working in collaboration for the benefit of all our members. Working with IAM, CERC, WERC, IMA, and of course our European partners in ABRA, ARP, SARA and SNPRM makes so much sense!
So conference season continues and we’ll be welcoming EuRA members and friends to our 14th annual US Reception held alongside the Worldwide ERC Conference in Seattle and we’re looking forward to seeing you all!