The Daily Talk: Raymond J. Kopcinski Sr., CMP

The 2015 PCMA Chair on a Year of Missioning

Raymond J. Kopcinski Sr., CMP • Senior Director, Million Dollar Round Table • 2015 Chair, PCMA Board of Directors

Raymond J. Kopcinski Sr., CMP
• Senior Director, Million Dollar Round Table
• 2015 Chair, PCMA Board of Directors

First joined PCMA


First volunteer leadership position with PCMA

In 2010, I was the chair of session development for the International Task Force. The following year, I was invited to be part of the Board [of Directors], and then just went from there.

Goals as 2015 chair

I knew that this year was going to be a challenging one for both boards, because we were going to be very intimately involved in the missioning process. I knew that our primary focus was going to be on that, and I was hoping that in the course of the year, we would have gotten through that process very productively and come to a definitive direction. I was happy that is exactly what happened with both boards — the [PCMA Education Foundation] Board of Trustees and [PCMA] Board of Directors. The majority was overwhelmingly in support of the final recommendation that came out of the work from both boards. I think it will be something that will affect PCMA five, eight, 10 years in the future, so it was an important amount of work that had to be done. It was done in a short amount of time, but it was very intensive.

The other thing is that from my very first chapter visit, I was so very impressed with the dedication and the passion of people at the local level, our members, that I thought it would be nice, if possible — and I wasn’t even sure it was going to be possible — to make it my personal goal to visit all chapters throughout the year. It appears as if I will make that.

I just can’t say enough about how continually impressed I am about the level of dedication, commitment, and passion that our members show at the local level. They don’t really get a lot of recognition for it for the most part, but they are very dedicated, and they work very hard. Most of the time when I’m there and I’m able to say a few words, I always tell them that PCMA is headquartered in Chicago, but it’s a building with desks, staplers, and staff. The real PCMA is in the room that I’m standing in. It’s the members at the local level that make up and create the great organization that we have.

PCMA’s global future

When I first started traveling for Million Dollar Round Table many years ago, what struck me as I traveled to many exotic places for the first time was the basic common denominator. Although cultures are different and people eat different food and they may look different and wear different clothing, we are all basically the same. We all have the same concerns. We all have the same dreams. We all have the same fears, in many respects. We’re trying to work hard to provide for our families, to advance in a career, no matter where we are. There’s the desire to learn, to get better at what we do.

I wasn’t prepared for the fact that, although on the surface there were many differences, basically there weren’t any when you scratched that surface. People are people the world around. I think as an organization, we are finding that the desire for education, the desire to progress in your chosen field, is the same whether you’re in Singapore or Toledo. If we can provide tools to help people, those tools should be equally valuable in every location.

Future involvement with PCMA

As past chair, I have some rather important responsibilities that I have to attend to. After that, to be honest with you, I’m not quite sure. The best-laid plans of mice and men. I hope that I still have a few adventures and/or mountains left in me that may be beckoning.

Raymond J. Kopcinski Sr., CMP, Senior Director, Million Dollar Round Table

William F. Reed, FASAE, CMP, Senior Director of Meetings and Community Engagement, American Society of Hematology

Mary Pat Heftman, Executive Vice President, Convention and Strategic Alliances, National Restaurant Association

Immediate Past Chair
Christopher J. Wehking, CMP, Chief Program Officer, American Society of Anesthesiologists

George Aguel, FASAE, President and CEO, Visit Orlando
Martin D. Balogh, Director of Meetings and Travel, American Bar Association
Oscar Cerezales, Chief Operating Officer, Asia Pacific, MCI Singapore
Nancy DeBrosse, CMP, Senior Vice President, Sales and Account Management, Experient Inc.
Kristin Gibson, CMP, CHSP, Vice President of Sales and Industry Relations, J. Spargo & Associates Inc.
Ann Godi, CMP, President and CEO, Benchmarc360 Inc.
William Grusich, CMP, FASAE, Senior Vice President of Sales, Associated Luxury Hotels International
Phelps Hope, CMP, Senior Vice President, Meetings and Expositions, Kellen Meetings
Lawrence Luteran, Senior Vice President, Group Sales and Industry Relations, Hilton Worldwide
Kristin K. Mirabal, CMP, Director, Global Events, Association of Corporate Travel Executives
Kirsten Olean, CMP, CAE, Director of Meetings, American Society of Microbiology
David J. Olender, Partner,
Stuart Ruff, CMP, Director, Meetings, Exhibitions, and Events, RIMS – The Risk Management Society
Claire Smith, CMP, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Vancouver Convention Centre
Charles Starks, President and CEO, Music City Center