HIGH POINT – The Trade Show News Network (TSNN) presented Dorothy Belshaw, International Market Centers (IMC) chief customer and marketing officer, with the 2021 Outstanding Show Pro Award.
The news network presented the award to Belshaw earlier this month at its annual gala event to honor Belshaw for leading the creation of IMC’s Together Safely COVID protocols which were developed after combining extensive customer research with local and state guidelines and input from a top epidemiologist.
“Dorothy initiated and drove the research process that provided not only a deep understanding of customer needs during and after the pandemic but also identification of implicit fears about returning to markets and steps that would be necessary to safely and successfully reunite the industry at our events,” said Bob Maricich, IMC CEO. “Dorothy’s recognition as a TSNN Outstanding Show Pro is well deserved, and I’m confident her talents will continue to benefit our industry moving forward.”
With Belshaw’s guidance, IMC and Stax, a global strategy consulting firm, collaborated throughout 2020 to survey more than 180,000 retailers and designers who had attended IMC’s markets in Atlanta, High Point and Las Vegas along with 6,000-plus IMC tenants and exhibitors.
The research had four broad goals: assess the current retail climate for business operations, sourcing and consumer sales; understand how IMC and its vendors can best support the retail community; inform market planning through 2020 understanding safety concerns and travel sentiment; and explore the utility of digital tools for sourcing and selling. The survey found that physical markets are critical for retailers across all categories.
These findings were foundational as IMC worked to quickly develop and communicate Together Safely, protocols which have enabled it to successfully host 25 markets with more than 100,000 combined attendees since March 2020.
Belshaw, a 30+ year veteran of the trade show industry, has served as IMC’s executive vice president, chief customer & marketing officer since 2020, a role in which she oversees all aspects of IMC’s end-to-end customer experience, driving increased buyer acquisition across all markets, and developing digital tools and services to improve the at-market experience for buyers and tenants.
The TSNN Awards, which have been celebrating excellence and innovation among the trade show community for 11 years, introduced the Outstanding Show Pro award in 2021 to honor the people behind the scenes. Along with Belshaw, seven other outstanding show pros received this award during its inaugural year.