Careers at the Aspen Institute
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Aspen Institute employees come from a wide range of backgrounds and possess a unique blend of education, skill, and policy experience. We recognize that our people are our vital resource and we value their knowledge, enthusiasm, and commitment. At the Aspen Institute we offer competitive salaries and a wide variety of benefits to our employees and their families.

If you would enjoy working in a dynamic environment and are looking for an opportunity to become part of a stellar team of professionals, we invite you to apply online today.

Meetings Manager

Department: EDUCATION
Location: Washington, DC

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Position Description

The Meetings Manager will be responsible for planning and managing most of the Aspen Institute Education & Society Program (Aspen Education) meetings, convenings and events, and will partner with external consultants and vendors as needed to add capacity. This includes responsibility for all logistics (meals, location, registration, materials), contract negotiation and coordination with participants and Aspen Education Program staff to ensure successful events. The Meetings Manager joins a team of twelve team members and will report to the Managing Director.

The Aspen Education Program improves public education by inspiring, informing, and influencing education leaders to take action across policy and practice, with an emphasis on achieving equity for students of color and children from low-income backgrounds. Aspen Education supports leaders at all levels – from urban superintendents and their teams, to state chiefs and their cabinets, to elected officials and their staffers, to education support organizations, associations, nonprofits, and philanthropy.

The Aspen Education Program team is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion. We believe this commitment must extend across three dimensions: the individual, the internal organizational, and the external facing work. We want all employees to experience a sense of belonging on our team. This means we will hire and retain a diverse workforce, we will value differences, and we are inclusive.

Our dedication to promoting diversity and inclusion is reflected in all our content and processes, including our approach to convening/event planning and management.

Duties, and Responsibilities for the role:

  • Manage logistical execution of a portfolio of meetings, convenings and events; collaborate with internal Program staff and consultants to successfully execute all logistics-related tasks; utilize effective and clear communication to ensure clarity of roles across the team;M
  • Provide internal event management thought leadership and serve as the main point person for program events, assuming primary responsibility for assuring quality control over all events; maintain event calendars, schedule and assign tasks, identify risks, assess and escalate issues as needed.
  • Build event best practices, develop event workplans, deliverable templates, attendees communications plans and set program policies (i.e., standard operating procedures) with regard to event planning, management, coordination, logistics, and communication with participants;
  • Oversee the registration, lodging and travel booking process to ensure a seamless experience for attendees; build registration process and oversee day to day operations of selected registration platform (CVENT); monitor hotel rooming blocks and progress towards attrition; manage relationship with selected travel agent; track itineraries and travel logistics for attendees;
  • Oversee event design and logistical strategy; execute work related to coordination of menus, event décor, signage plots and printing, banquet event orders, audio visual & staging, internet & power coordination, entertainment, seating arrangements, and activities that includes opportunities to honor local communities;
  • Foster and manage relationships with venues, hotels, event vendors, and external consultants; work closely with vendor partners to ensure accurate bid, high quality service, along with awareness and accountability for deadlines and budget parameters;
  • Oversee financial management and vendor/venue contracts of all events; monitor budgets, spending, receipts, event folios, and contract submissions; review, and negotiate contracts with venues & vendor partners, and work with Aspen’s legal department to obtain approvals on all contracts;
  • Manage on-site support for events including development of on-site staffing plan; hire temporary staff; adequately train staff, supporting consultants, and other officials on program matters; and make all necessary arrangements to ensure a successful event including travel in advance of events to ascertain viability for an event and/or to plan and set up accordingly;
  • Oversee the coordination and production of retreat materials, proofread in collaboration with Program Associate, Program Coordinator and project teams. Monitor material production, adherence to deadlines, and anticipate conflicts or issues; troubleshoot and address proactively;
  • Lead post-event logistics activities, including debriefs, distribution of post event evaluation surveys, survey reviews and analysis; ensure learnings and takeaways are implemented and communicated to all impacted parties;
  • Actively leverage digital tools (including, but not limited to CVENT, MailChimp, Basecamp, Zoom, and MS Office and Google suites) to implement and continuously enhance event operations;
  • Other responsibilities may be added as necessary.

Minimum Qualifications for the role:

  • Hold a bachelor’s degree or equivalent work experience and have at least 5-7 years of professional experience in an events management or related field; CMP (Certified Meeting Professional) certification is a plus but not required;
  • Experience in digital and project management platforms, including Microsoft and Google suite, Basecamp, Zoom, Calendly, CVENT;
  • Experience managing event budgets, assessing and negotiating vendor contracts;
  • Strategic, thoughtful, collaborative problem-solver, known for taking initiative, consistent with follow-through; adaptable to change, with a spirit of “no job is beneath me;”
  • Strong communicator with exceptional written and oral communication skills and ability to communicate effectively at all levels, one-on-one and in groups;
  • Ability to travel throughout the United States to manage and execute events;
  • Commitment to customer service, including valuing and respecting all participant and staff backgrounds, culture and unique needs, reflecting our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in all aspects of convening and event management.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

Candidate must have the ability to work under pressure and handle stress. Candidate must also have the ability to meet the regular attendance policy of the Aspen Institute.


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