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      FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

      IACC and AHLEI Develop Partnership with Focus on Education

      St. Louis, MO - October 2008 - The International Association of Conference Centers (IACC) and the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (EI) are partnering to provide IACC's members with targeted educational and professional development resources.

      The mutual goal of the partnership is to build on the strengths of both hospitality organizations to provide significant educational opportunities for conference center operators and meeting planners. The Educational Institute will work with IACC to develop conference center-specific, customized materials, as well as reviewing current EI educational and training materials that could meet the needs of conference centers. IACC is also interested in working with EI to develop online learning and professional certification programs for its members.

      "This is a win-win arrangement for EI and IACC, both of which share a strong commitment to professional development," said Roy Kennington, CHA, EI's president and COO. "We bring our half-century of expertise developing training and professional certification resources for all facets of the hospitality industry, while IACC brings a new perspective and a wealth of subject matter experts from the conference center sector to the table."

      With more than 350 conference center members around the globe, the International Association of Conference Centers (IACC) represents meeting facilities that have met the stringent Universal Criteria for membership and are committed to providing the highest quality conference facilities and services around the world. Addressing seven key areas of hospitality, these standards are designed to provide a more productive meeting experience.

      IACC's global mission is to promote the conference center concept as featuring separate, distinct and unique places and services; to collect and distribute relevant industry information and trends; to provide and exchange of experiences among its members; to address common problems, needs and opportunities; to provide programs and services that assist members in operating more effectively; and to respond to the needs and interests of conference center users as determined by the Board of Directors.

      According to IACC North America President, Neil Pompan, "This is a unique and exciting opportunity for IACC to continue to concentrate on education by providing cutting-edge educational materials with EI that are relevant to our industry and by working toward developing certification for Conference Center Professionals."

      For more information about the Educational Institute, visit http://www.ahlei.org. To learn more about the International Association of Conference Centers, visit http://www.iacconline.org.

      About the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute
      Established in 1953 as a nonprofit educational foundation of the American Hotel & Lodging Association, the Educational Institute’s mission is to continue being the preferred provider to the lodging industry, hospitality schools, and related hospitality industries by developing and providing quality resources to train, educate, and certify hospitality professionals worldwide.

      Elizabeth Johnson - ejohnson@ahla.com

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