Tag Archives: AVIXA Women’s Council

Episode 136: Women and Leadership in the AV Industry – the AVIXA Women’s Council Breakfast at InfoComm 2019 (Part 2)



This episode is sponsored by: TierPM.

Make sure you listen to Episode 136: Women and Leadership in the AV Industry – the AVIXA Women’s Council (Part 1)

This Part 2 is all about the AVIXA Women’s Council Breakfast at InfoComm 2019, June 13th 7:30 to 9:30 AM.

Christy talks about how she and Alexis were responsible for overseeing all that has been planned for the Breakfast (and they got help). Corey mentions Alexis, as well as someone else he had tried to get for this podcast. He talks about some of the previous keynotes, and mentions this year’s keynote, the CEO of Shure, Inc. Marika and Cory talk about her and what she means to the Breakfast as well as the industry.

TierPM is the main sponsor for the Breakfast, and Marika talks about that.

All then talk about what they’re expecting at the Breakfast as well as InfoComm, Christy mentions some things that attendees can look forward to Thursday morning. Susan talks about connecting and reconnecting, as well as growing personally and professionally. Michelle talks about her positive experience from last year’s Breakfast, and she talks about supporting one another, as well as diversity. Cristina (her first InfoComm) talks about the Breakfast as well as being a facilitator for the Women in AV and IT event taking place afterward. Christina talks about the face to face aspect (it’s her first time at InfoComm).

Maura (it’s her first InfoComm being fairly new to the industry) talks about meeting women from different backgrounds and different ends of the industry, as well as connecting and how important that is. Marika discusses feeling the energy, as well as seeing people she knows as well as meeting people. She also talks about “sharing stories.” Corey talks about Cory as he knows her, and Cory discusses the first Breakfast (which she was at), and her great expectations for this one. She also talks about the topic of “women in the industry,” as well as the AV Tribe.

Finally, Corey asks each person on the show about a 5-year perspective about women in the AV industry – listen in for excellent answers here.


Episode 136: Women and Leadership in the AV Industry – the AVIXA Women’s Council (Part 1)



This episode is sponsored by: TierPM

Join the Crew host Corey Moss, Maura Quinn and guest Crew Michelle Loret as they welcome their guests:

Cory Schaeffer – Director, Strategic Industry Relations at QSC
Christy Ricketts – VP of Operations & Marketing at Contemporary Research
Marika Aquino – Managing Partner at TierPM
Susan Wilhite – Territory Sales Director at VIP Cinema Seating
Christina Cruzeiro – Business Development Manager at Stampede
Cristina Lucas – Manager, Product & Marketing at Genesis Integration

This show begins with Cory talking about the creation of the AVIXA Women’s Council and groups in the U.S. It started small, and has expanded greatly through today.

Next, Christy talks about the AVIXA Women’s Council groups in Texas as she oversees all of them (she is in Dallas), she was one of the early group starters as well. She also talks about starting up the Dallas group and how that happened, along with putting together this year’s breakfast with Alexis La Brois (the topic of part 2). Cory adds to this conversation too.

Susan Wilhite talks about getting involved in the AVIXA Women’s Council (she co-leads the Los Angeles group) and how she has built relationships through Council group events, including in other cities. Cory also talks about anyone wanting to start a group where none exists at the current time.

Christina Cruzeiro and Cristina Lucas (both head up the group in Toronto) talk about how they handle responsibilities together with their separate talents and capabilities. Cory talks about how terrific a job they do with meetings as well as attendance. They also talk about how there are many men who attend the events.

Michelle talks about the Houston group (that she co-leads with Alesia Hendley) and all that happens with that group.

Maura gives her perspective, being a young woman fairly new to the industry. She is also new to the Southern California area, and getting familiar with groups out there. Cory talks here about group events that have been put together, collaboration, and starting a new group as well. There’s also talk about Brandy Alvarado, the Chair of the AVIXA Women’s Council.

Corey talks about Marika and their friendship, as well as how it started (with a podcast) several years back. Marika talks about how the AVIXA Women’s Council has grown and her perspective on that.

Cory closes this conversation talking about relationships and mentoring in the industry.

Listen to this Part 1 about an influential group in the commercial AV industry, Part 2 is about the AVIXA Women’s Council Breakfast at InfoComm.


Episode 86: Meet More of the AV Women of the AVIXA Women’s Council Groups – Including Canada!



Join the Crew host Corey Moss, Michelle Loret, Steve Picanza, Kaleo Lee and guest Crew members Brandy Alvarado, Dayna Baymann as they welcome their guests:

Mary Cook – Project Consultant at The Sextant Group
Christina Cruzeiro – Business Development Manager at Stampede Presentation Products
Cristina Lucas – Product & Marketing at Genesis Integration, Inc.
Megan Dee Durocher – AV/IT Solutions Architect at University of Southern California
Johanna Ocampo –  Director of Marketing at SiliconCore Technology

This next AVIXA Women’s Council Groups show on ‘The AV Life’ brings back Brandy, Dayna and Mary – and introduces new voices including Christina and Cristina who are heading up a brand new group in Canada in the Toronto area!

Brandy and Dayna join the Crew for this one, and Brandy (a bit voice challenged still) brings great information to this show, showing the true leadership of the AVIXA Women’s Council Groups (along with Cory Schaeffer) across North America.

Mary is first, she appeared on the very first AVIXA Women’s Group episode of the year, and she’s heading up a group in a new state now. Christina and Cristina – our #CanadaChristinas (or #CanadaCristinas?) talk about starting up the new Toronto group. Megan, who is an AV/IT Solutions Architect along with being an expert in Big Data Analytics, is next talking about what being a part of this means to her. Johanna discusses her efforts with a new group in Northern CA, and Brandy picks up on that conversation being in Southern CA.

Brandy and Dayna talk about their groups, and Brandy brings main talking points including #MyAVTribe, get local – the need to meet more than just once a year at InfoComm, areas where people can help and more. She also talks about the impact men also have on their efforts. Dayna also adds discussion of helping in local areas with the AVIXA Women’s Council groups.

Next is discussion of the AVIXA Women’s Council Breakfast at InfoComm, the women talk about their experiences there, and Corey talks about his previous experiences at the Breakfasts along with a thought he had last year, that turned into reality this year. Michelle also gives a great take on this year’s Breakfast (and more) as well. Some special shoutouts here too.

Finally, each of the women gets to do a call-out in terms of joining up with the groups.

Sit back, plug in, and get to know these amazing women in the AV industry as we live…

The AV Life.


Episode 76: AVIXA Women and the Success of the DMV Group March Madness Event, Women and Men in Sales/Working in Manufacturing vs. Integration, and InfoComm 18



Join Corey (Moss) and Cory (Schaeffer) as they co-host this one along with returning (for one night only) Crew member Taylor Meyer as they welcome their guests:

Megan Riddle – Regional Sales Manager, Mid-Atlantic at Planar
Brad Orme – Regional Sales Manager, Mid-Atlantic at Planar
Alexis LaBrois – Systems Consultant at Avitecture, inc.
Scott Durham – Enterprise System Consultant at Yorktel

The first Corey/Cory co-hosted ‘The AV Life’ show focuses on an AVIXA Women’s Council event in DC Metro put together by the DMV Group – Megan Riddle and Alexis La Broi are leaders of the group (and put this event together), and other great AV women in the area are a part of it. Corey was at the event and detailed it on Convergent AV – here is a picture of some of the women in attendance (including Heidi Voorhees and Amanda Eberle Boyer with AVIXA). 

Brad Orme was there of course as he works for Planar (and also helped Megan with the planning) and Scott Durham was one of the men in attendance. All of the guests begin talking about what they do which leads to an interesting conversation about working in integration vs manufacturing (for Megan, Brad and Alexis who have been on both sides), and Brad also talks about the advantage of having the Planar showroom in VA – where the event took place – for integrators and end users. Scott also talks about keys being the demo for the customer, as well as the integrator’s relationship with the vendor. Cory adds to this in terms of some end user specified project timelines and expectations impacting both integrator and manufacturer.  And of course, Taylor Meyer talks robotics and how this can be of help for the manufacturers. 

Next came discussion of the March Madness event, and Megan and Alexis talk about putting the event together – coordination, inviting the guests, and why it took place at March Madness time. Cory talks about the mission of the Council meetings and events, the connections that are made at them, and even business getting done. Cory also talks about the AVIXA Women’s Breakfast at InfoComm. Megan also discusses women in sales and engineering and their impact on the industry through the AVIXA Women’s Council. Alexis also talks about a young woman who attended the event who is looking for a career in AV (her name is Bella, she is front row, far right in the picture). Scott also talks about the AVIXA Women’s Council and events. Alexis also talks about the next event coming up with Integrate Baltimore. 

Finally, all talk about InfoComm and what they are expecting at the show (and something about a shoe game at AVIXA). 

Sit back, plug in and enjoy our third AVIXA Women’s episode with some of the great women and men in the industry as we live…

The AV Life. 


Episode 70: Time to Power Up Women Across the AV Industry and Continue to Grow the AVIXA Women’s Council Groups



Join the Crew host Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett, Michelle Loret and Lauren Larson as they welcome their guests (with the regional groups they head up):

Brandy Alvarado – rp Visual Solutions (Southern California), Cory Schaeffer – QSC (Southern California), Christy Ricketts – Contemporary Research (Dallas with Lauren), Gina Sansivero – FSR, Inc. (New York City), Erica Carroll – Atlona (Atlanta), Debbie Williamson – Tempest Technologies (Seattle), Penny Sitler – Draper, Inc. (Chair of the AVIXA Women’s Council – who joined in progress).

After each of the guests introduce themselves (and the women who are Crew members do too), Brandy starts the show by talking about AVIXA Women and the groups across the country. Cory talks about how she would like to continue to see more groups form across the country, and see more women in tech positions in the industry. Erica talks about being a qualified woman in tech in the industry, and having to prove herself at times (an old story already).

Lauren talks about a recent event that took place in Dallas where Christy was the speaker for the evening. Christy talks about the AV community there as well as the group’s foundation, along with two of the women in the group – one who just passed her CTS and another who has a CTS-D. She also talked about one of the men who attended (and supports their efforts), and the others talk about this too.

Katye discusses how women should present themselves professionally, on LinkedIn especially, Cory and Christy also talk about updating professional profiles. Christy also talks about the Career Empowerment Alliances. Gina talks about helping to start up the Boston group, along with what’s taking place in the New York area (and an event that is planned). Penny talks about all of the women who are involved and how proud she is of their efforts, as well as her role as the Chair of the Council. Debbie talks about the group in Seattle and an event that took place with women in different industry roles attending.

Cory gives a call to action about the AVIXA 2018 Women in AV Award. Erica also gives the group a great statement, Christy and Brandy discuss it too – and Penny talks about the importance of getting credentials. Michelle, Lauren and Katye end the show with “the real deal.” 

Sit back, plug in, and enjoy this episode of The AV Life.


Episode 68: The Return from ISE 2018, the Experiences, and Stories to Tell (Part 1)



Join the Crew host Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett, Michelle Loret and Lauren Larson as they welcome their guests:

Dana Corey – GM & VP of Sales at Avocor
Pippa Edelen – Director of WW Marketing + Communications at Avocor
Justin Kennington – President at SDVoE Alliance
David Kung – Vice President, Product Strategy at Oblong Industries, Inc.

After an electric, record breaking ISE 2018 show, the Crew is back along with guests who have returned from exhibiting at the show in Amsterdam. Katye and Michelle returned from ISE and share their experiences, Katye of course is CEO|Chief Strategist at KMB Communications, and Michelle, who represented Convergent AV as a reporter at the show, is Regional Director – Gulf Coast at ProVideo Solutions. You’ll hear them talk about the show and the city of Amsterdam – for Michelle her first ever trip to ISE. Corey was back at home base in Virginia during the show, and he talks about working with Michelle to put out the exhibitor and executive interviews that she did on Convergent AV. Lauren was home in Dallas, TX, and she looked forward to this show’s conversations with the guests as did all of the Crew.

Each guest who joined on this Part 1 episode talk about their company or organization and what they do, share some of their experiences at ISE, and discuss the following stories:

David Kung – Oblong Industries adds some PoP to ISE 2018 (and more about Mezzanine, along with global team collaboration).

Justin Kennington – Christie Boxer Is Now The First Projector To Deliver Direct Interface With SDVoE system Over 10G Ethernet (along with conversation about AV over IP with Michelle, and a few “shootouts” at ISE).

Dana Corey and Pippa Edelen – Avocor Teams with Zoom to Bring Advanced Video Conferencing on Large Interactive Displays with Zoom Rooms for Touch (along with Avocor touch display technology, collaboration and the huddle room).

The show wraps with Michelle discussing her first ISE show experience, along with the guests and Crew members talking about what’s upcoming for them (and their companies) in terms of trade shows and events (including the AVIXA Women’s Council).

Sit back, plug in and enjoy this Part 1 as we live…

The AV Life.


Episode 67: The ISE 2018 Executive Interviews – Dave Labuskes, Julian Phillips, Rich Ventura and Cory Schaeffer



Crew member Michelle Loret spent the week at ISE 2018 and conducted product discussions with exhibitors – along with one-on-one interviews with certain industry executives:

Dave Labuskes, Chief Executive Officer at AVIXA – Michelle sits down with Dave Labuskes who has come to ISE for the first time with the newly rebranded industry organization, they begin by talking with about this, as well as the “user experience.”  They discuss what people will be able to look forward to attending InfoComm 2018 in Las Vegas this June – Dave talks about creation of content, as well as TIDE which will be taking place again at the show. They also talk about some exhibitor statistics, as well as how the shows are the epicenter of the industry. Dave also discusses the commitment to audio visual and bringing value over all of the verticals, as well as a focused discussion on digital signage. And of course, creating the integrated experience with audio visual technology.

Julian Phillips, Executive Vice President at Whitlock and Chairman of the Board of Directors, AVIXA – Michelle gets together with one of the AV industry’s leaders and top influencers Julian Phillips, who along with his executive role at global video collaboration company Whitlock, is the new (and first) Chairman of the Board of Directors, AVIXA. Michelle begins by asking Julian about his being at ISE, and he also details the European market in this conversation, including discussion of economies of scale. Next is a global discussion as Julian talks about the Global Presence Alliance (GPA), from its creation to bulding the global footprint along with the catalog of services, 24 x 7 multilingual service desk, manufacturing partners and the customers. He also talks about their sharing economy including development of relationships, knowledge base and new ideas. Julian then discusses his becoming the Chairman of the Board of Directors, AVIXA, and also talks about the organization, community and data analytics, including market research conducted by AVIXA. Michelle and Julian close with discussion of the industry organization’s name change along with the necessity of accessing analyst information.

Richard Ventura, Vice President of Strategy at NEC Display Solutions and Chairman of the Digital Signage Federation (DSF) – Michelle sits down with Rich Ventura an industry leader in display and digital signage solutions, who is Vice President of Strategy at NEC Display Solutions as well as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Digital Signage Federation.  Rich begins by talking about the acquisition of S[quadrat], and the Best Large Booth win at the show along with what took place in the booth. Rich also talked about some of NEC’s products showcased as well as their partnerships, and their strategy with Raspberry Pi and OPS architecture (and next SDM). Michelle then asks Rich about what to look forward to at the next shows – the Digital Signage Expo (DSE) and InfoComm, and Rich adds some discussion of the London Showcase, and also discusses the New York Showcase (now in its 25th year) in depth. He talks about a great focus on verticalization, and NEC helping integrators to put together the proper solutions. He discusses how the NEC executive teams work together at the trade shows – NEC Display Solutions of America and NEC Display Solutions Europe. He also talks about meeting with Dave Labuskes as well discussing education, analytics, AVIXA and DSF the organizations, and more. Rich closes talking about integrators going for the right opportunities.

Cory Schaeffer, Director, Systems Solutions Global Enterprise Accounts at QSC – Michelle catches up with Cory, one of the AV industry’s most prominent leaders as well as a leader of the AVIXA Women’s Council at ISE 2018 to talk about QSC the company and the culture, along with her role. Cory also talks about the large number of women at the company, and QSC “50 and Forward.” Michelle discusses the AVIXA Women’s Council and events with Cory (Michelle is a part of the Houston division, Cory heads up the Southern California division with rp Visual Solutions’ Brandy Alvarado), as well as how Cory has been a pioneer of the AVIXA Women’s efforts.

The order of discussion – Dave Labuskes, Julian Phillips (14:02), Cory Schaeffer (34:15) and Rich Ventura (44:00).

Sit back, plug in, and join Michelle and her executive guests as they live…

The AV Life. 


Episode 61: Meet Some of the Great AVIXA Women, Hear About Groups, Events, and How You Can Get Involved Too



Join the Crew Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett and Megan Powers as they are joined by women of the AV industry who are AVIXA Women:

Cory Schaeffer (So Cal), Brandy Alvarado (So Cal), Jennifer Davis (Atlanta), Christy Ricketts (Dallas), Mary Cook (Atlanta), Gina Sansivero (NY), Alexis LaBrois (DC), Christa Bender (PA), Lauren Larson (Dallas/Houston), Dayna Baumann (NY), Amanda Boyer – Sr Director of Member Services at AVIXA (and Council Staff Liaison). 

Hear about how Brandy and Cory started the Women of InfoComm Southern California group in early 2016, and Amanda talks about AVIXA, the AVIXA Women’s Council and her role, as well as interacting and coordinating with regional groups.

You’ll hear from each of the participants about the groups that they head up in their regions, events from 2017, meetings and events upcoming in 2018 and more.

Enjoy this very special show and live The AV Life!