Events DC’s Steve Schwartz Bestowed Lifetime Achievement Award by the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM)


WASHINGTON, DC – (July 31, 2018) – Events DC, the official convention and sports authority of the District of Columbia, announced today that its Senior Research Policy Analyst Steve Schwartz was bestowed the 2018 Convention Center Lifetime Achievement Award. The award was presented during the International Association of Venue Managers’ (IAVM) 93rd Annual Conference, VenueConnect 2018 in Toronto, Canada.

The Lifetime Achievement Award is given to an exceptional leader with significant contributions to IAVM and the convention center industry. Representing public assembly venues from around the globe, IAVM's active members include managers and senior executives from auditorium, arenas, convention centers, exhibit halls, stadiums, performing arts centers, university complexes and amphitheaters.

Schwartz was recognized for his 35 years of service to the industry, 32 of which were with the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. He joined the organization in 1986 as an Event Coordinator at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Since then, he has held various positions in convention management and facility operations prior being named to his current role Senior Research Policy Analyst in 2008.

“We could not be prouder of Steve’s lifetime award recognition by industry peers. He continues to make an impact in this realm on how venues are effectively managed, influencing current and future leaders,” said Gregory A. O’Dell, president and chief executive officer of Events DC. “Steve has a wealth of experiences and vast knowledge which has been instrumental in the development of policies to successfully position the Walter E. Washington Convention Center as a venue leader in the United States and the world.”

Among his many achievements at Events DC, Schwartz created the customer satisfaction program to routinely measure, analyze and report on client event experiences at the Convention Center. He consults with departments and leaders across the organization, providing insights and statistical data, as well as drafting reports and business practices.

“Steve has made a tremendous impact at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for over the past 32 years,” said Samuel Thomas, senior vice president and general manager of Events DC and the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. “He is always willing to make himself and his work available to a wide group of people. The customer satisfaction program has been instrumental in our efforts to provide world class service to our clients.”

“It is truly an honor to be recognized by peers,” said Schwartz. “This award is not just about me, but the collaborative efforts and successes over the years among industry peers and with Events DC colleagues. We often have good results for today, but that should always be leveraged to get great results.”

Schwartz has held many leadership roles under IAVM, serving on the Convention Center Sector Committee, Industry Affairs Council, Exhibit Industry Task Force, Research Advisory Council and Economic Impact Advisory Committee.

“On behalf of the Convention Center Committee, I want to congratulate Steve Schwartz for earning and deserving this prestigious award for his continued commitment and dedication to the convention center industry, said Naz Sabripour, CEM, CVP, vice chair of the Convention Centers Committee of IAVM. “His multitude of contributions, outstanding service, and passion are integral, beneficial, and truly inspirational to the industry.”

“Steve’s contribution to the convention center industry and our association are manifold.  The Lifetime Achievement Award Subcommittee was presented with and evaluated many professionals but Steve’s nomination rose to the top,” said Stacey Church, sub-committee chair of the Convention Center Lifetime Achievement Award of IAVM. “His dedication and commitment to working on forward thinking projects is evident in his everyday actions. Thank you, Steve, keep up the great work, and congratulations!”

Schwartz was a founding member of the Event Services Professionals Association (ESPA), an organization that represents professionals and young professionals from conventions and visitors’ bureaus, hotels and convention centers. He was also instrumental in establishing IAVM’s VenueDataSource research program, a process for tracking and recording operational and business metrics for venues.

A graduate of Washington University, Schwartz earned BA in Theater.
About Events DC
Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, delivers premier event services and flexible venues across the nation’s capital. Leveraging the power of a world-class destination and creating amazing attendee experiences, Events DC generates economic and community benefits through the attraction and promotion of business, athletic, entertainment and cultural activities. Events DC oversees the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, an anchor of the District’s hospitality and tourism economy that hosts more than 1.7 million visitors and generates more than $400 million annually in total economic impact, and the historic Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Square. Events DC manages the RFK Stadium-Armory Campus (RFK Campus), including Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium, Festival Grounds at RFK Campus, the non-military functions of the DC Armory and the Skate Park at RFK Campus. Stay current on the 190-acre RFK Campus Redevelopment Project at Events DC also built and serves as landlord for Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified major professional sports stadium in the United States. Events DC manages Gateway DC, R.I.S.E. Demonstration Center and is building the Entertainment & Sports Arena (, all conveniently located in the Congress Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC. For more information, please visit and find us on social media – Facebook (Events DC), Twitter (@TheEventsDC), and Instagram (@EventsDC).
About IAVM: Representing public assembly venues from around the globe, IAVM’s 5,600 active members include managers and senior executives from auditoriums, arenas, convention centers, exhibit halls, stadiums, performing arts centers, university complexes, racetracks, and amphitheaters. IAVM’s mission is to educate, advocate for, and inspire public assembly venue professionals worldwide. More information about IAVM is available at or via @IAVMWHQ on Twitter.