First let me start with our keynotes, pre-conference speaker and our emcee. Our opening keynote, Ryan Estes, kicked us off with a very motivating and moving presentation that set the tone for the entire conference. Talent Anarchy (Jason Lauritsen and Joe Gerstandt) did what many keynoters fail to do and that is took the tough after lunch spot and they OWNED it. Testify. China Gorman gave our final keynote as only China can, informative, entertaining and classy. As I said in introducing China, when I took on ILSHRM11, I had a short list of 3 keynoters I wanted and I was blessed enough to get all three, China being top of that list. Whew. Jessica Miller-Merrell came in and led our first ever pre-conference session and did everything I thought she would do and more. And what can I say about our first ever conference emcee, Charlie Judy, but WOW. (Already got him committed to ILSHRM12).
Next, I have to thank our concurrent presenters. I wish I could list all 30 of them but space does not allow it (we run into that book length problem). The only complaint I have heard so far is that we didn’t have bigger concurrent break out rooms (we are working on that). They engaged, entertained and educated all of you. If you attended one (or five) great session, I encourage you to reach out to the speaker and connect with them to thank them and network. They are easily findable on the internet and if not, let us know; we will try and hook you up.
Next, our Social Media folks who came in and shared the conference with the world in ways I never thought possible. The number of over 3.8 million internet impressions just staggers me. Thank you Robin, Geoff, Maren, Kristi, Bryan, William, Jennifer, Dwane, Mike, Jessica, Jason S, Jason L, Joe, China and Charlie.
Thank you to the staff at NIU, Drury Lane, MCS and Chris Martin Public Relations for support and your hard work.
Thank you to our exhibitors and sponsors. You help make this amazing event possible. Please check out the list on our web site. Special thanks to our conference sponsor, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Illinois. They have been unbelievable in their support in the last few years.
Thanks to the SHRM staff at ILSHRM. Martha and Kristine, you support us all year long so thank you for sharing two days with us, I know how busy you are. Kattie from HRCI, it was so great to meet in person and thanks to your team for sponsoring our first tweet up and the ILSHRM All Acess video recaps. Curtis, thanks. Without your interest last year, our social media reach would not be anything compared to what it is.
Thank you to all of our Illinois SHRM Board and volunteers. You made this years’ event run as smooth as glass due to all your effort and work. Special thanks go to our officers (Donna, Amy and Marianne), our District Directors (Karen, Lenore, Janeane, Melissa, Connie and especially Pattie), our technology team of Rachel and Dave. Thanks to all the chapter members and SHRM members who pitched into help. Extra special thanks to Sabrina Baker, our exhibitor and sponsor chair and Cathy Plouzek, my Co-Director. You all are super heroes in my book.
Last but not least, thanks to each and every attendee who came and participated. Your energy, enthusiasm and excitement made ILSHRM11 a huge success.
See you at the Drury Lane on August 6-7, 2012.
-John Jorgensen Conference Director ISC SHRM