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CPCE Spotlight: Emily Evanoff, CPCE

Our CPCE Spotlight is where professionals share their motivation behind earning the Certified Professional in Catering and Events (CPCE). This month we are featuring Emily Evanoff, CPCE, Events Planner for Eversheds Sutherland.

If you are interested in being featured, please contact cpce@nace.net.

Q. Please provide some background on your current position and company. 

A. I have been an Event Planner with Eversheds Sutherland for just under a year. Eversheds Sutherland is a global law firm headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia and London, England with 68 offices all over the world. Our team plans conferences and cocktail hours for thousands of people to intimate dinners for ten.

Q. Do you believe CPCE certification helped you achieve your current position?

A. 100% yes. Following the extensive interview process for this position, I was told that the company was only considering candidates with a professional designation within the industry. I have found that this is the norm for most corporate event planning jobs.

Q. Do you have professional goals you’d like to share with readers? If so, describe them.

A.I am working towards passing the level two sommelier exam through the Court of Master Sommeliers to earn my certified designation.

Q: How and when did you first learn about CPCE?

A. I first learned about CPCE upon joining NACE in 2011. I was introduced to a large group of professionals, many of whom I strived to be like.

Q. What or who encouraged you to consider applying?

A. My dear friend and former boss, Walt Nemeth, CPCE. He was the one who really encouraged me to get involved more than I was. I attended my first NACE conference because of him and eventually signed up to take the exam.

Q. Any tips for future applicants of CPCE?

A. As Ice Cube says, “You can do it!” I put off taking the exam because I was unsure of what to expect and that felt really uncomfortable. Since passing this exam, I am a big proponent of continuing education and learning outside of the bubble we get used to as adults. Use your brain to learn new things just as you would flex a muscle to get stronger. You will be surprised how many benefits you will reap when taking on a challenge.

Q. How the CPCE letters behind your name helped express to colleagues, clients, employers, or others your knowledge and experience in the industry?

A. The CPCE letters show your commitment to investing in yourself, your craft, and the NACE organization. By supporting NACE, you show your support for our industry as a whole, which empowers us all.

Q. Do you have a favorite CPCE memory?

A. My favorite memory is passing the exam. Clicking the submit button and seeing the pass screen was an amazing feeling.

Q. What is your favorite part of working in the catering and events industry?

A. I have two.

First, with every event, you create experiences that people will remember. It is a chance to steal a little piece of someone’s heart and tell the story of your brand in the most human way – by not pushing something at them but taking them on an emotional journey.

Second, there is so much potential for growth in the events industry. Many of its areas are like green fields waiting for disruptive ideas. If you think about it, present-day conferences and certain events look almost identical to those organized 50 years ago and that calls for disruption. So if you have an idea, this is a field to plant it.

Get to know Emily a bit more: 

Emily Evanoff, CPCE, is a proud native of Cleveland, Ohio and earned a bachelor of science in marketing and hospitality management from THE Ohio State University. In her spare time, Emily is an avid lover of plants, good wine, and bad jokes. She can be found listening to her music mentor, Bruce Springsteen or re-watching every episode of The Office. She is best friends with her lab/hound mix puppy Bessie and believes laughter really is the best medicine. Emily’s life mantra has become: Do what you love to do without constraint, and you will be successful in all you pursue.

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Crystal Irwin


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