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The Business of Travel

Welcome to GBTA's official podcast covering all things business travel!

Mar 11, 2022

Consumer Electronics Show executive shares trends, lessons and advice from CES 2021 and 2022.

Everyone across the business travel industry is now talking about continued, and hopefully accelerated, recovery as we move through the pandemic. Meetings, events and conferences are a critical part of our industry. But they are also areas that have been significantly impacted by the pandemic, essentially putting the brakes on in-person gatherings and especially larger ones.  So how has this sector been navigating so far and how are they getting ready for what’s next? 

To provide some insight, our guest today is Kara Dickerson, VP of Strategic Relationships and Conferences for the Consumer Technology Association or (CTA).  CTA owns and operates the Consumer Electronics Show, or (CES), one of the largest annual trade shows in the world. In 2021, due to the pandemic, CES was held as an all-digital event. But in 2022, CES returned to its home in Las Vegas and welcomed more than 40,000 attendees from over 119 countries.

In this episode, Dickerson explains some overarching trends in the large meetings and events space, what went in to returning to in-person events, lessons learned and valuable advice for organizations as they start to get back into hosting larger events and conferences.

Kara Dickerson is a technology and brand executive, bringing 20+ years of executive management experience to her role as Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and Conferences for the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), the U.S. trade association representing more than 2,200 consumer technology companies, which owns and produces CES® – The Global Stage for Innovation. 

Dickerson is the lead content strategist for CES, where she directs the strategy of the thought leadership program for the world’s most influential technology event. She is responsible for the globally renowned CES keynote stage which attracts visionary speakers and innovators from around the world, engaging Fortune 500 CEOs from brands like Accenture, Ford, General Motors, IBM, Fortune, Intel, LinkedIn, Mastercard, Mercedes-Benz, Microsoft, NBCUniversal, Netflix, Salesforce, Samsung, Twitter, Under Armour, Verizon, Warner Media, and U.S. Cabinet Officials. In addition to the CES conference, Dickerson oversees a year-round portfolio of events that bring together the global technology community, connecting and engaging innovators that are using technology to solve global challenges.