Guest Experience & Crowd Management Conference
February 20 - 22, 2018 / Minneapolis, MN


Chris Bryant
Guest Experience Expert

Chris Bryant is an expert in the fine art of guest experience. He specializes in developing business professionals, building customer-centric organizations and driving brand loyalty through unforgettable memories in sports and entertainment.

Mr. Bryant is uniquely qualified in what it takes to promote performance on a world-class level; and you can say it is in the company he keeps. His elite expertise was honed during an impressive career with Nordstrom and the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company. He oversaw training and development for the largest Ritz-Carlton in North America and led this premier property to a #1 rating in guest satisfaction for the entire iconic brand. He also served as a member of the Ritz-Carlton Leadership Center and spokesman on the brands’ legendary service. He is now an award-winning consultant, national speaker and trainer on delivering a world-class guest experience. In addition to elite venues such as Radio City Music Hall and Broadway theatres, his valued clients include over thirty teams, stadiums and arenas in the NFL, NBA, MLB, MLS, NHL and WNBA.

Chris has a gift for equipping and inspiring audiences at all levels to achieve personal and organizational breakthroughs. His personable style, insights and sense of humor are always a crowd favorite. He is a graduate of Michigan State University and the Executive Management Program at the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business. In addition to making the world a more service-centric place; Mr. Bryant is a proud winner on The Price is Right Game Show.


Geoff Hinds
Chief Executive Officer, SBC Fair

Geoff Hinds has over 15 years of diverse experience in the Live Event market, and serves as the Chief Executive Officer at SBC Fair in Southern California, which has overseen operations of both the San Bernardino County Fairgrounds and Adelanto Stadium.   As CEO Hinds was instrumental in the return of professional baseball to the California High Desert in 2017 with the introduction of the High Desert Yardbirds of the Pecos league who won the Pecos league World Series in their inaugural 2017 season.  Hinds is also working with the HD Pro Soccer to bring professional Soccer to the High Desert region of California as the High Desert Fury men’s and women’s professional soccer teams begin operation in 2018.

In addition Hinds has shared his knowledge and expertise through work on or at many large events and  including the recent Route 91 Harvest Festival.    His past experience includes management experience with 504 West Inc, Ray Cammack Shows Inc, the San Mateo Expo Center, Tulare County Fair and more.    Geoff has successfully transformed multiple previously struggling California Fair venues into financially viable community centers, through the reduction of expenses and the building of strong teams.   In addition, Hinds has served on numerous industry associations and committees including as a board member for the Western Fairs Association, and as a founding member for the International Association of Fairs and Expositions Young Professional Initiative, and as a board member for the Tulare Chamber of Commerce.   A graduate of Whitter College, Hinds lives in Apple Valley CA with his GF Angie, 4 horses, 4 dogs, and 1 cat.


Ken Jaeger
Stakeholder Readiness and Exercises Section Chief, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

As Stakeholder Readiness and Exercises Section Chief, Ken Jaeger leads a multidisciplinary team responsible for designing, developing, conducting, evaluating, and facilitating improvement planning during the exercise process for government, as well as for critical infrastructure owners and operators.

Prior to transferring into the Exercise Section, Mr. Jaeger was with the Office of Infrastructure Protection’s, Office for Bombing Prevention where he was responsible for the management, coordination, and development of national capabilities to prevent improvised explosive device (IED) attacks against our nation’s Critical Infrastructure. Mr. Jaeger was responsible for assisting cities and States in developing their Multi-jurisdictional IED Security Plans as well as managing IED Awareness Training Programs designed to educate first responders, emergency managers and private sector security, owners and operators about IED preparedness and mitigation.

Mr. Jaeger has over twenty-five years of experience with Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) and joined DHS/IP following seven years of service as Chief in the U.S. Department of State’s Explosive Countermeasures unit. Prior to working at DoS, Mr. Jaeger served sixteen years in the U.S. Navy as an EOD technician attached to various Mobile Units and Detachments overseas. Mr. Jaeger’s last assignment with the Navy was at the Naval School EOD, a US military joint service school for EOD technicians, where he was an instructor in the Chemical / Biological and Improvised Explosives Devices Divisions.


Julian Maha, M.D.
Founder, KultureCity

Dr. Julian Maha graduated from the University of Calgary School of Medicine at the age of 23. Working as an Emergency Department and Emergency Medical Services medical director in the state of Alabama, Dr. Maha has also done hospital consulting work on emergency room work and patient flow. When his oldest son was diagnosed with autism, Dr. Maha focused his attention on helping his son. This effort led him to found KultureCity: an impact driven nonprofit that has applied a startup model to the nonprofit world. Since its creation, KultureCity has become not only the best reviewed disability nonprofit in the United States but also the fastest growing. Recent achievements include being named one of the Top 10 nonprofits in the US by Microsoft, the Nascar Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award just to name a few. Dr. Maha is a sought after speaker and consultant and has main-staged TedX, Collision, Ignite and many more. He has also been featured by Inc, Fast Company, USA Today, Fox News just to name a few. The sensory inclusion initiative to make arenas sensory inclusive was started by him and now is in multiple NBA, NHL and NFL arenas across the USA.


Laura Mandeeds
University of Minnesota Wellbeing Program Administrator

Laura Manydeeds has been the Wellbeing Program Administrator in the Office of Human Resources Total Compensation department at the University of Minnesota since May 2016. Beyond receiving her Masters in Wellness and Lifestyle Management in 2015, Laura has been working in the human resources field for 10 years covering a wide range of functions such as employee wellness, worker's compensation, family medical leave, onboarding and training and development.  Laura has served on a variety of community wellness committees over the years and currently serves on the advisory board for the health and wellness management program at the University of Wisconsin-Extension. Laura has a personal passion and energy for wellbeing and greatly cares for the wellbeing of others. 


Andrew McQuillan, FdA, GSP, MIIRSM
Guest Faculty

Andrew has worked in Crowd Management industry for the past 12 years. For ten years, Andrew ran a Crowd Management service provider for events and venues based in the United Kingdom. He holds various academic qualifications in Crowd Safety Management, Venue Security and Event Safety. His has significant experience at all levels of Crowd Management from conceptualization of events or venues through to planning, service delivery and monitoring. Andrew has delivered Crowd Management for a wide variety of events ranging from International Golf Tournaments in the Middle East to Athletic events, Stadia, City Centre events and Air Displays with over 300,000 attendances. Andrew also is a FAA and CAA licensed commercial drone pilot and assists festivals, events and venues with live down streaming of video or thermal imaging to assist in Crowd Management.


Ruby Newell-Legner, CSP
Fan Experience Expert

Fan Experience Expert, Ruby Newell-Legner, offers 7 Star Service solutions to engage employees, build loyalty & retention with guests and increase the bottom-line. Through consulting and training she inspired new service cultures for executives, managers, and guest relations staff to enhance for venues hosting Super Bowl XLI, the 2008 US Open (tennis), the 2010 Olympics and the 2006 & 2013 Grey Cup.

Her venue clients include:

350 municipal agencies
94 leisure facilities
49 arenas & stadiums hosting 29 professional sports teams
35 community centers preparing to open
20 military bases
12 universities
6 convention centers
4 amphitheater & performing arts complexes 

Results from clients following Ruby’s 7 Star Service Proprietary Process:
Moved from #78 to the #1 position in ESPN Fan Experience rankings of 122 professional sports franchises
Amplified repeat business from 3% to 19%
Expanded season ticket holders from 4,000 to 14,000
Increased customer satisfaction ratings by 17%
Increased revenue in one year by 16%

As a Certified Speaking Professional, Ruby:
Presented 2500 programs in 23 countries
Served as 2015-2016 National President for the National Speakers Association

IAVM is grateful for
the support of our
Global Partners:


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