In 2002 AEA began an Ambassadors program at the Annual Conference. Ambassadors are experienced AEA members who volunteer to reach out to first time conference attendees and anyone with questions. 

If you are seeking help from someone who knows the ropes - or where to point you to find out what you need, Ambassadors can also assist you in connecting with resources and people who share your interests. 

If you are a regular attendee at the conference, please consider serving the Association as an AEA Ambassador. Take a moment to review the questions and answers below. If you decide you would like to serve as an ambassador, please click on this link to email the AEA office and please indicate the date and slot that is best for you (scroll down for list).

Ambassadors: Questions and Answers

Why does AEA have an Ambassador program? Feedback from recent AEA conferences suggests that first time attendees, as well as some of those that are returning, can feel isolated or unsure of how to get the most out of the meeting. The data further suggest that many attendees are seeking networking opportunities – but are unsure as to how to reach out to others in the field. The Ambassador program is one way we are addressing these issues.

What are the qualifications of an Ambassador? Ambassadors have attended at least three AEA conferences and have been AEA members for at least four years. They are outgoing and ready to meet new people and answer questions about the Association and the Conference.

What are the obligations of being an Ambassador? At the Conference, they volunteer for a single one to two hour scheduled shift. Ambassadors also wear an “Ambassador” ribbon throughout the conference indicating their willingness to answer questions at any time.

What do Ambassadors do during their scheduled shift? During receptions, Ambassadors seek out attendees with “first time attendee” ribbons and/or those who are not engaged with others. When at the registration area, Ambassadors are out among the registrants (not behind the desk) – particularly those waiting in line or standing alone. As a Plenary and coffee break host, Ambassadors interact with attendees as they enter the morning's opening session and at the coffee break following. Whether at a reception, at registration, or at the Plenary and coffee break, Ambassadors welcome attendees, may offer them a drink, give directions, ask about their work and reasons for attending, and recommend upcoming events or ways to get involved.

What do Ambassadors do the rest of the time? Ambassadors wear “Ambassador” ribbons throughout the Conference. They are willing to answer questions at any time. During the newcomers orientation, attendees will be encouraged to seek out Ambassadors should they have any questions. Ambassadors are looking for ways to help attendees get involved in AEA and the Conference. They may invite new attendees to join them for dinner, encourage them to attend a TIG meeting, or exchange business cards for follow-up after the conference. Great Ambassadors take a moment to stop and chat with attendees in the elevator or when sitting next to a first time attendee while waiting for a session to begin. Great Ambassadors connect attendees with each other – introducing newcomers to AEA leaders or others in their field who might be interested in their work.

What are the benefits of being an Ambassador? Ambassadors get to meet new members and expand their network of colleagues. They help the Association through making the Conference and AEA more welcoming. They help individual attendees by providing a way to connect with others and access information. Ambassadors serving during a reception receive tickets they may use to purchase drinks for new attendees.

Ambassadors: Schedule

Wednesday November 7: 6:15 – 8:00 PM (Evening Reception and Information Fair)

1. Beverly Parsons

2. Bianca Montrosse

3. Denise Seigart

4. Donna Podems

5. Sarita Davis

6. Howard Mzumara

7. Kent Hutchinson

8. ______________________

9. ______________________

10. ______________________

11.  ______________________

12.  ______________________

Thursday November 8: 7:45 – 9:40 AM (Plenary and Coffee Break Host - before and after plenary)

1.  Victoria (Essenmacher) Straub

2.  David Bernstein

Friday November 9: 7:45 – 9:30 AM (Plenary and Coffee Break Host - before and after plenary)

1. Sheila Arens

2. Mary E. Piontek

Friday November 9: 6:15 – 8:00 PM (Evening Reception & International Auction)

1. George Julnes

2. Jennifer Greene

3. Lyn Shulha

4. Melanie Hwalek

5. Jim Rugh

6. Jack Barnette

7. Bill Rickards

8. Hazel Symonette

9.  Thereza Penna Firme

10. Rita O'Sullivan

11. Liliana Rodriguez-Campos

12. ______________________

Saturday November 4: 7:45 – 9:40 AM (Plenary and Coffee Break Host - before and after plenary)

1. ______________________

2. ______________________

Questions: Contact Susan Mort in the AEA office at smort@eval.org or 1-508-748-3326 or 1-888-232-2275 if you have any questions.


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