April Walsh, Marketing Director, Freeman
Hometown: New Canaan, CT
University of Education: Wake Forest University
How long have you been an IAEE member? 6 years
IAEE Chapter: DFW Chapter
How has IAEE shaped your career?
I am extremely fortunate that Freeman invests in their employees and my membership for IAEE. It has
been extremely beneficial because I have been able to find a community and advance my industry
education. Through my involvement with IAEE I have had access to event best practices, invaluable
relationships, and leadership experience.
What advice would you give to a new member?
My advice to a new member would be to take advantage of all the resources that the organization has
to offer. Research, networking, mentorship – the opportunities to get involved are there so take the
initiative to immerse yourself in this fantastic community. One of my favorite IAEE Events was a spin
class organized for the young professional’s group in NYC. It was a blast and I was able to meet many
other newcomers in our industry with a shared interest. We wanted to continue talking but weren’t sure
where to go next. Coincidentally, the spin class was right next door to our Freeman Agency office so we
stopped by and ended up having lots of fun trying out VR – which was fairly new to our industry at the
time. Be sure to get involved early – and with something that you are genuinely interested in to form
relationships and learn from likeminded peers.
What community service projects do you like to be involved in? Why?
My favorite community service is not far from me in New York City. Through my church I learned about
the Kianga House, a transitional family shelter in Brooklyn and before the pandemic, I would visit once a
week when I was not traveling for work. The residents generally consist of young women in their late
teens or early twenties who are pregnant or parenting an infant or toddler. During my visits we would
read and play with the children so that the young mothers were able to have a night off. Kianga means
“ray of sunlight” and we try to brighten their ¬days – I hope to be back there soon when it is safe to
What do you like most about Expo! Expo!?
Expo! Expo! is an incredible industry event – bringing together our entire community to network, learn,
and innovate. What I like the most is the opportunity to meet new people – there are so many smart
and talented people in our industry and I always look forward to this amazing meeting of the minds. I
always come home having learned something new from someone new!
How do you currently use social media for your events?
Freeman uses social media for events in a variety of ways, and we love to experiment and try new things
all the time. Most recently, with the return of in-person events we have been sharing our experiences
there with those who are not able to be there to walk the show floor. As a surprise and delight moment
to welcome back exhibitors, we have delivered pop-up ice cream stands to celebrate in-person events at
the World of Concrete in Las Vegas and NY NOW and JA in NYC. We shared the experience on social
media and encouraged the participants to do so to drum up and excitement, engagement, and
enthusiasm for safe in-person events. During these events, we also shared short videos of our customers
and exhibitors providing testimonials about the significance of in-person shows on social media. With
the right measures in place safe events are possible and posting on social media about the health and
safety considerations explained directly from industry leaders helped to raise awareness.