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Women of Influence: Annamaria Ruffini, CIS, CITP, CMP

Save it: sustainability comes first.

The meetings industry has long been dominated by women, but across 2018 and 2019 it seems to have set a new standard: Women were elected to the top spots at six major industry organizations. We recently sat down with each them to hear how they’re tackling the industry’s biggest problems—and what they’ve learned along their journeys. Click on each person's name and read her story. 

• Amanda Armstrong, CMP
• Patricia V. Blake, FASAE, CAE
• Claire Smith, CMP
• Carol McGury
• Nancy Lindemer
• Annamaria Ruffini, CIS, CITP, CMP

Annamaria Ruffini, CIS, CITP, CMP

Leadership role: Outgoing President, Society for Incentive Travel Excellence Board of Directors 

Day job: President & CEO, Events In & Out

Her take on the industry: Annamaria Ruffini has one word to sum up her biggest goal as president of the SITE board of directors: sustainability. “As event organizers, we all have a Plan B, but we have to be conscious that we have no Planet B,” says Ruffini, whose company—an incentive house and destination management firm—is based in Rome. 

Under her leadership in the past year, SITE established a sustainability committee to educate and empower members on sustainable event practices. Part of the committee’s job was to integrate sustainability into each 2018 SITE event so that the organization reduces its global carbon footprint. In addition, the committee is creating monthly educational content such as case studies for all SITE members. 

A member of the industry since 1986, Ruffini is known for her hands-on manual “Ecoeventi,” the only Italian guide to eco-sustainable practices for incentive trips, conventions, and teambuilding events. 

As SITE president, she also helped launch Women in Leadership, a new SITE initiative and mentorship program to empower women in their careers. Her take on women’s advancement in the industry: “Find a mentor. Don’t be afraid to ask. You’ll find many willing to help.”

Fun Fact:  With a bachelor’s degree in modern languages and a master’s in political science, Ruffini traveled the world as a war correspondent before joining the events industry.

Read more leadership stories: 
• Amanda Armstrong, CMP• Patricia V. Blake, FASAE, CAE
• Claire Smith, CMP
• Carol McGury
• Nancy Lindemer


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