My name is Kerrell McNeal. I have worked in the special events industry for over 15 years and I consider myself extremely lucky and blessed to call this my profession. When I started my own business back in 2006, my grandmother used to say “Well, you’ll do that while you keep looking for a real job” – she just couldn’t believe that you could actually make a living doing something you love! Clearly, my grandmother never heard of Anthony Bourdain or Blake Mykoskie!
Back when I used to work on the audio-visual production side of things, everything we brought into an event came in a road case, and everything went back into a road case for the truck ride back to the shop – no waste. I could wrap my brain around that pretty easily. Once I got into overall event production and conference management, I got much more involved in the food ordering process. This is where I began to see the senseless amount of food waste that is created as a byproduct of these wonderful events we are producing.
Somewhere in the 2000’s, buzzwords like “sustainability” and “green meetings” spread throughout our industry, and a lot of people made a lot of money trying to make events more sustainable and “greener”. My standpoint is sustainability shouldn’t be seen as an option, rather it should be seen as your responsibility. Or, perhaps, even more bluntly, it’s just the right thing to do.
Special thanks go to my team, who have worked tirelessly to get this project off the ground: Damon Dunsmore, Kevin Kowalczyk and Su Berger. And, of course, my family and friends for listening to me go on about this for years…”write it down, already”!