Our series aims to highlight the exceptional employees in the events industry. Each Beyond the Booth feature will be a mixture of professional and personal questions illustrating their unique personality. Shelon Atwater CEM, provides a glimpse into her life. Shelon is the Assistant Director, Exhibits & Business Partnerships, at the American Alliance of Museums.

Question: What initially got you interested in your current field of work?
Answer: I started off working in membership services at my association which gave me an opportunity to get to know our members and to understand the needs of the field. I wanted to be sure that I provided each member/prospective member with good customer service as that initial communication with me could make or break a member’s experience. When I transitioned over to the meetings team, I wanted to provide the same service to attendees that come to the conference, a memorable quality experience.

Question: What energizes you about your career in events?
Answer: I enjoy incorporating innovative and engaging experiences for our attendees and stakeholders. Each year is a new challenge and I love finding ways to tackle them.

Question: What’s the best career advice you’ve ever heard?
Answer: “Embrace failure as you learn from those mistakes.”

Question: What’s your favorite conference/tradeshow/event to attend?
Answer: There are several events that I enjoy attending because I experience and learn different things from different shows. I enjoy attending events where I can receive professional development specific to my job function, and network with industry peers.

Question: Do you have a professional mentor?
Answer: I can’t say that I have one professional mentor. I have several peers that I learn from regularly and can reach out to for advice or guidance.

Question: What’s your favorite way to spend a day off?
Answer: Spending time with family and friends.

Question: What was the last TV show you binge-watched?
Answer: Big Sky

Question: What song always gets you out on the dance floor?
Answer: “It takes two” by Rob Base & DJ EZ Rock (song playing in my head now) 1.2.3. get loose now….

Question: What’s the phone app you use most?
Answer: Words with Friends followed by Instagram/Facebook a close second.

Thanks so much, Shelon for participating in Beyond the Booth!