The new 2013–2014 national directors and EXCO members of the Southern African Association for the Conference Industry (SAACI) have been elected.
The national chairperson is Zelda Coetzee, of Imfunzelelo Conference and Event Management, national vice-chairperson is Kim Gibbens of Springbok Atlas, and national treasurer is Glenn van Eck, of Magnetic Storm.
The other Board members are immediate past chairperson Nina Freysen-Pretorius, Keith Burton, Bruce Dorrofield, Wayne Johnson, Crystal Kasselman, Godfrey King, Conrad Kullmann, Denver Manickum, James Seymour, Esmaré Steinhöfel, Bronwen Shaw and Andrew Stewart.
Ms Coetzee said she is taking over the reins of the Association at a time when a number of solid building blocks have already been put in place. “We have an effective head office and secretariat, as well as seven functioning specialist forums within the business events industry.
“In addition, the new Board has just completed its first strategic meeting, and we are now hard at work, formulating a new business plan for SAACI, with the aim of managing it more like a business, as opposed to a traditional association.
“We are very aware that membership benefits are crucial. Members expect a return on their investment, and we plan to give them exactly that. SAACI is already at the forefront of the business events industry in South Africa – a position that we intend to strengthen even more.”
Ms Coetzee is an established professional conference organiser with extensive local and international experience. She has held numerous positions in SAACI since 2003, most recently as deputy national chairperson and chairperson of the Western Cape branch. She lives with her family in Cape Town.