Abstractr

Katie Risher, CMP - Assistant Director

Katie joined the UF Conference Department team in 2015 and has been working in the event industry for 10 years. Katie has experience in customer service, project management, stakeholder management, meeting and conference planning, and event design for planning and executing in-person, virtual, and hybrid events.

Katie earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Recreation, Parks, and Tourism, with a Specialization in Event Management, from the University of Florida and earned her Masters of Science in Tourism and Commercial Recreation from the University of Florida in April 2016.

Since 2015, Katie has been an active member of Meeting Professionals International (MPI) where she currently serves as President of the North Florida Chapter and has also served 2 years as Vice President of Communications, 1 year as Vice President of Finance, and 1 year as President Elect. Katie was also awarded Planner of the Year for 2018-2019 & 2021-2022 and the President's Award for 2019-2020 from the MPI North Florida Chapter. Katie obtained her Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) Certification in January of 2018 and a Digital Event Strategist (DES) certification from Professional Convention and Management Association (PCMA) and MPI in June 2020. Katie was also awarded a Division Three Superior Accomplishment Award from UF in March 2023. This program is designed to recognize outstanding faculty and staff for their dedication to their jobs and for going above and beyond to advance the mission of our great university and serve the community at-large.

Avery Bender - Event Manager

Avery joined the conference team in early 2020 and has been working in the events industry for just over 10 years. A Gainesville native, she brings experience in venue operations, menu planning, transportation and scheduling logistics, wedding coordination and non-profit fundraising events. Avery is currently an active member of MPI (Meeting Professionals International) and studying to get her Certified Meeting Professional Certification (CMP). In her spare time Avery enjoys vegetarian cooking, international travel, and supporting local live music.

Kevin Jackson, CGMP - Event Manager

Graduating from the University of Florida in 2013 with a BA in Anthropology, Kevin brings an array of skills and interests to the conferences department including: client relations, project management, and strategic planning.

Kevin has been with the University of Florida since 2017 as the Conference-Event Planner at the College of Public Health and Health Professions, and has been working in event management in higher education since 2016.

Active in the Central Florida chapter of Society of Government Meeting Professionals, Kevin serves as the 1st Vice President and earned his Certified Government Meeting Professional credential in 2021.

Kevin is currently pursuing his Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) credential and is interested in furthering his skills in virtual event management. During his free time, Kevin enjoys kayaking local rivers, camping, and tailgating for Gators football!

Lauren Keiser - Event Manager

Joining the UF Conference Department in 2021, Lauren has been working in the events industry since 2010. She has acquired a vast range of knowledge and skills through the planning and execution of 300+ events ranging from an intimate 100-year-old theater to an 825-seat opera house, to more unique venues such as the public gardens of a nationally acclaimed zoo and within university art museums.

Lauren has been with the University of Florida since 2019 as the Rental Event Manager for the Harn Museum of Art and has experience in customer service, venue management, and event planning and design.

Lauren earned a Bachelor’s degree in Interior Design and is currently pursuing her Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) credential. In her free time, Lauren enjoys home improvement projects, kayaking and spending time with her family and dog, Nasa!

Tamara Johnson - Administrative Support Assistant

Tamara Johnson joined the Conference Department in 2007 and plays a vital role in supporting client services. Tamara was born and raised in Gainesville, Florida and enjoys spending time with family, reading, and going to the beach.

Sienna Horton - Administrative Support Assistant

Sienna graduated from Santa Fe College in 2017 with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Organizational Management with a Specialization in Human Resource Management. She joined the Conference Department in 2019 and previously worked at the TREEO Center from 2017 to 2019. Sienna has extensive knowledge of various UF processes and is eager to assist students and clients.

During her free time, Sienna can be found reading, painting, or playing video games alongside her significant other, Donald.

Optimizing Solutions for Resilient Coasts Summit

Dec 1, 2023
Gainesville, FL

Abstract submissions are due by October 13, 2023

Abstract template: Please use the CCS Microsoft Word Template for your abstract submission.

Registration: Please note that the presenting author of each accepted abstract has to be registered for the conference in order to present a poster. Registration Link.

Abstract Submission

Alex Cromwell - Event Manager

Joining the UF Conference Department in 2023, Alex has been with the University of Florida since 2016, as the Logistics Coordinator for the department of Pathology and has extensive experience in logistics, project management, purchasing, customer service, and marketing.

Alex has been working in the wedding and events industry since 2019 where she augmented her skills in event planning, event execution, and design.

Alex is pursuing her Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) credential and is interested in furthering her digital and social marketing skills. Alex enjoys boating, camping outdoors, and spoiling her nieces and nephews!