Top event producers in the Country are coming together to share their experience and expertise with event planners on the Central Coast

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce and the City of SLO’s Promotional Coordinating Committee are coming together to help community organizations reimagine their events during the pandemic.

“Think Differently,” a free event, is bringing together some of the most experienced and innovative event producers in the country to share how they have reimagined events, celebrations and announcements. 

While gathering in person is not an option, there are countless ways to adapt the region’s signature events and continue to bring people together — something many organizations rely on not only financially, but for community connection and purpose. 

With nearly 80 years of experience between them, these national experts have reinvented how to look at events, and will help tackle the most common problems for attendees and event producers alike including: 

● Conquering the boring Zoom event 

● Planning in a time of ever-changing regulations 

● Convincing attendees that your event will be different 

● Getting buy-in from key stakeholders 

Event details 

• Date: Dec. 7

• Time: 12-1:30 p.m. 

• Location: ZOOM, link and instructions to join will be provided upon registration
• Pricing: Free

During the event’s question-and-answer session, audience members will have a chance to dig deeper with the experts. 

This event is free and open to anyone — a recording of the event will be shared with registrants afterwards. Additionally, the PCC will be awarding up to 40 nonprofits $2,500 grants this year. To learn more and apply for a grant, click here

More about the panelists: 

Megan Henshall joined Google in April 2019, as the Global Events Account Manager in Real Estate and Workplace Services. She works closely with product areas to understand how events drive business and build communities across Google. 

Prior to taking her current role, she spent more than 12 years designing, planning and executing corporate marketing, recruiting, learning, development and incentive events. Henshall is a strategist, experience enthusiast, helper/fixer, podcast and documentary lover, and mom to 2-year-old Otis. 

• After Troy Williams’ rewarding 14-year tenure, he successfully launched Simply Troy Lifestyle + Events, creating incredibly personalized events and branding experiences for celebrity, corporate, charity and social clients. He’s been named multiple times as one of the “Most Influential Event Professionals in the U.S.” by BizBash, a “Best Wedding Planner in the World” by Harper’s Bazaar and a “Best Wedding Planner in the U.S.” by BRIDES magazine. 

His strong background in Public Relations, Marketing and Brand Partnerships are a unique bonus to his tasteful and thoughtful event designer skills. He’s currently incorporating multiple lifestyle design projects into his brand like his Hallmark Signature Greeting Card line, curating custom gift boxes for virtual event experiences around the country and set decorating for filmed entertainment projects like “The Disney Holiday Singalong” on ABC. 

Mark Perry is the founder of Freestyle Entertainment and Event Services, a full service event company that provides spectacular and innovative show designs to a diverse clientele. Perry and his team work with clients from consultation to implementation to bring their vision to life and to produce a successful event.

In the fall of 2013 Freestyle Event Services acquired Audio Visual Plus, a Central Valley based Audio/Visual Rental and Event Production company. Founded in 1986 as U-Edit Video Center, a small ‘do it yourself’ video editing and production company, progressed into a full service television production and audio/visual rental company. By 1994 U-Edit Video Center became Pro Video Services with clients such as Court TV, ESPN, Jim Burke Ford, and Mercy Hospital. 

Josh Rodman is the Executive Director at Harbinger, an event management agency based in Washington, DC. Harbinger’s base in Washington, DC has built a strong reputation amongst political organizations, from the White House to international diplomatic missions, as well as with corporations, nonprofits and international brands. 

Rodman’s background in finance and accounting has provided him with an advantage in the events industry. As an accountant, Josh’s expertise as the “numbers guy” is an asset on site given Harbinger’s specialty of creating political events with extremely short timelines and strict budgets.

Amber Karson’s 20 year career in event planning has taken her across the U.S. and around the globe. She offers a unique perspective to event planning, having started her career as an in-house corporate event planner, and now as an entrepreneur and independent event planner. 

Together with her twin sister, she launched Karson Butler Events in 2008, serving a distinguished clientele in the social, corporate, incentive travel and agri-tourism sectors. Karson has appeared on “The Today Show” and in publications such as The Washington Post, Martha Stewart Weddings, The Knot, Inside Weddings and more. 

She earned her Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) credentials in 2007, one of the highest honors in the meetings and special events industry.