IAAPA News - IAAPA Centennial - July 2018

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In May, the IAAPA leadership team, construction and development partners, and community leaders officially broke ground on the association's new global headquarters in Orlando.

IAAPA Breaks Ground on New Global Headquarters

by Juanita Chavarro Arias

In an exciting step toward building the future, IAAPA held a groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate its brand-new 22,000-square-foot global headquarters in Orlando. On a sunny morning in May, industry professionals, IAAPA members and staff, community partners, and local government officials gathered on the 7-acre lot to kick off the construction process that is slated to be complete by summer 2019.

Susie Storey, IAAPA’s director of communications, welcomed guests to the event and was joined onstage by IAAPA Chairman of the Board Andreas Andersen, IAAPA Interim President and CEO Hal McEvoy, and Orange County District 1 Commissioner Betsy VanderLey.

“It’s just not an office; it’s a home. It’s the place where members can visit, interact, and hold an event,” Andersen said of the new building in an interview. “This is the beginning of something new and exciting.”

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 1.) IAAPA Immediate Past Chairman Greg Hale (left) and IAAPA COO Doug Stagner; 2.) FROM LEFT: Orange County Convention Center's Jesse Allen, IAAPA First Vice Chair David Rosenberg, and Hal McEvoy; 3-4.) Special IAAPA cupcakes, hard hats, and engraved shovels commemorated the groundbreaking event; 5.) Andreas Anderson; 6.) Betsy VanderLey; 7.) Susie Storey; 8.) Orlando-based IAAPA members gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking.

After remarks from the speakers, guests moved to the groundbreaking site, where 10 engraved shovels decorated with bows in IAAPA’s signature purple stood ready to commemorate the big moment. With a three-two-one countdown, the IAAPA leadership team, construction and development partners, and community leaders officially broke ground on the spot where IAAPA will make its permanent home. Moving from Alexandria, Virginia, the new headquarters will be conveniently located minutes from popular area attractions, the Orange County Convention Center, and the Orlando International Airport.

“Our members come through Orlando on a regular basis. Having our offices here will allow them to stop in, say, ‘Hello,’ and work closer with our team. There’s real value in that,” McEvoy said. “We’re here to serve our global members.”

The IAAPA team is made up of 73 employees worldwide, and 47 are currently based in Orlando at a leased office space close to the headquarters’ eventual home. The new building is a $14 million investment for the association and its members.

As a member who has been actively involved with IAAPA, Manuel Morales Jr., president of Bowlera in Puerto Rico, said he felt the significance of the groundbreaking ceremony.

“This is symbolic, not only for what it means for the building but for the organization worldwide,” he said. “This is a highlight of where we’re going in the future.”

For more information about IAAPA’s new global headquarters in Orlando, visit www.IAAPA.org/NewHQ.