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International events group honors AEM for leadership, innovation

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) is the recipient of two awards presented annually by the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE). The awards program recognizes outstanding contributions to the exhibits and events industry.

AEM’s Construction Challenge teen competition, which is designed to generate interest in construction careers, received the IAEE Outstanding Achievement in Innovation in Business Solutions award, given for creativity, utility and value.

AEM President Dennis Slater received the Distinguished Service award for his leadership of IAEE and the exhibits/events industry as a whole.

The AEM Construction Challenge was designed as a hands-on educational experience, with student teams using creative problem-solving techniques to learn more about construction careers and construction equipment, as well as industry contributions to quality of life. The first event was held in 2008, with five regional rallies across the United States and a finale competition at the CONEXPO-CON/AGG trade show in March in Las Vegas.

Based on the event’s success, AEM is expanding the Challenge in 2009. Regional rallies will be held in 16 cities across the United States. The finale will be held in late May 2009 in Knoxville, Tennessee, site of the global finals of Destination ImagiNation, which offers creative problem solving and critical thinking skills programs. Industry sponsors help underwrite cost of team participation at the finals, enabling students to take advantage of this unique endeavor. Challenge team sponsorships are still available.

“The off-road equipment industry faces critical worker shortages. The Challenge competition is just the beginning of our new workforce development committee’s activities to attract interest in all our industry segments,” Slater stated.

Dennis Slater is a longtime and active member of IAEE, and is a past Chairman and member of the group’s Board of Directors. “AEM is honored to be recognized by IAEE and supports the association because of its leadership in advancing the value of exhibitions as a vital business tool. We provide trade show services to help our members extend their reach in the marketplace, and participating in IAEE helps the AEM team better serve our members’ needs,” he noted.

AEM has an ownership stake in and manages several world-class expositions in North America and globally, based on its flagship CONEXPO-CON/AGG exhibition. AEM uses an industry focused approach that provides maximum return on investment to attendees and exhibitors. Show revenues are used to support industry initiatives.

In addition to trade shows, AEM core services include market statistical programs, technical and safety activities, public policy initiatives, industry education and workforce development. “All AEM activities help our members compete effectively in the global business environment,” said Slater.

For more information on AEM and its activities, go online at

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