In the six months of the SA Events Council’s existence, the coalition has been steadfastly engaged in the drive to reopen the events industry safely and responsibly and in demonstrating the capability and willingness of the sector to host professional events in accordance with government regulations. It has been a Sisyphean and at times disheartening undertaking, particularly now that the industry finds itself starting 2021 even further constrained by the second wave of the pandemic.
The driving force behind the Council has been Chairperson, Tes Proos, whose unfaltering dedication has ably steered the Council’s efforts alongside her other commitments as President of Site South Africa (Society for Incentive Travel Excellence) and owner of Cape Town-based Crystal Events & Incentives.
All positions on the Board at SAEC are volunteer posts and the position of Chair is rotated on a six month basis. At the end of January, Tes will be handing over the baton to Board Member Ellen Oosthuizen, Chairperson of the PCO Alliance and owner of Bebe’s Events and Promotions. Ellen has big shoes to fill, but her indomitable enthusiasm and drive make her an excellent fit for the position. While she has a mammoth task ahead of her in leading the Council and its efforts, the Board has no doubt that both the Council and the industry will benefit tremendously from Ellen’s leadership.
“I am delighted to announce Ellen’s appointment as Chairperson of the SA Events Council,” says Tes. “Her career spans 25 years of dedication and commitment to ensure all her clients get the high quality service they deserve and she is well-known and loved within the South Africa conferencing arena.
“It has been an honour for me to serve the Council in this capacity. As an industry, we have been through a harrowing time and our main objective is to get our industry back to work. Despite the setbacks, we believe that we have forged solid relationships with relevant government departments and other key-stakeholders, which will help pave the way towards swifter recovery.
“Fortunately, we are united as an industry and we intend to keep chipping away to find solutions to get our industry and our people operating again as soon as possible. With Ellen at the helm we are in good hands.”
Ellen is equally committed to the fight to reopen the events industry and to demonstrate that its practitioners are ‘event safety ready’. “It was humbling to be nominated and it will be a great privilege and honour to serve on the SAEC representing the Events and Tourism Industry with my fellow colleagues.
“The SAEC plays a vital role in driving our distress call to Government at the highest level. We also believe that the Events Industry has the inherent skills to assist with the essential functions of rolling out the vaccine and conducting rapid testing at designated events to help curb the spread of the virus,” she says. “I look forward to the task ahead.”