The association was founded in 1988 by William H. Just, CAE, CMP as the Association for Convention Operations Management (ACOM) as the first and only association to serve convention services managers. In September 2011, the association changed its name to Event Service Professionals Association (ESPA). The new name more accurately embraces the diversity of the roles our members play and their evolving responsibilities in their venues and cities. Importantly, the new name focuses on our members and their vital contributions, rather than simply referencing their job function as our previous name did.
ESPA is dedicated to elevating the event and convention service profession and to preparing members, through education and networking, for their pivotal role in innovative and successful event execution.
ESPA members hold many positions in Convention & Visitor Bureaus, Convention Centers, Conference Centers, Hotels and Resorts. Some of these include:
- Convention Service Coordinators, Managers and Directors
- Event Service Coordinators, Managers and Directors
- Housing Managers
- Operations Managers, Directors
- Directors of Convention/Trade Shows
- Catering Managers and Directors
- Facility Managers
- Attraction/Entertainment Facilities
- Audio Visual Companies
- Decorator Management Companies
Through education and networking, members: learn skills to be more effective service managers; gain a better understanding of the breadth of their role; and learn about planners' expectations. Visit Why Join ESPA for more on member benefits.
Read about the History of ESPA (formally ACOM).