Congratulations to this group of astute leaders of the Meetings Industry, selected by M&C editors. Saying this year has been challenging is an understatement, all of which put their plans into overdrive to develop solutions and plans for recovery. They’re leaders in every sense of the world working tirelessly for the betterment of the meetings industry, paving a path for all of us to weather this storm and come out better in years to come.
This year has presented serious challenges to our industry, so significant and so deep that none of us would have believed they could happen. Many recall the dire effects of 9/11 on the travel industry; the impact of Covid-19 will be 10 times worse, per a July forecast from the U.S. Travel Association. By May, more than 8.1 million U.S. hospitality workers were laid off due to the pandemic, and lost travel spending is expected to hit $505 billion nationally by the end of this year.