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College Park Day Gets an Event Planner

Denise Seifried (in the middle)

As the preparation for the second annual College Park Day gets underway, the event organizers and volunteers were presented with its first “official” event planner.

I use the word “official”, because so far, the event has been run purely by volunteers. That is going to change with the introduction of Denise C. Seifried, our new event planner.

The City budget has allocated $10,000 to hire an event planner in its FY2012 budget. This extra money helped us to hire Denise to organize our 2011 event (hint: we still have some cash left, shh!).

Denise is no stranger to College Park. She is currently employed at the University of Maryland, College Park, in the Conference & Visitor Services Department as a Program Manager tasked to manage a portfolio of 38 concurrent summer programs that brings in over $12M in annual funding to the university.

Her professional experience encompasses over 16 years working for top ranked universities on both coasts, as well as work with nonprofit organizations, entertainment companies, and city/county entities specializing in direction of major special events, including development, athletic, entertainment, and community projects. Her work over the years has involved extensive interaction and/or presentations with major corporations, donors and administrators, national and international government officials, celebrities, students, vendors, and the general public.

Denise is not an usual run of the mill event planner – with a degree in Landscape Architecture, and an eye for design she has been able to use both the left and right sides of my brain to not only handle the logistics and planning aspects of an event – but she has also been the designer of printed materials, posters and websites, as well as designing décor and the flow of an event from the guests perspective to create a balanced and enjoyable experience for them.

Her event career began as the logistics director for a bicycle ride that encompassed 2,500 cyclists, 500+ volunteers, and 50 staff that went from San Francisco to Los Angeles over a 7 day period and covered some 535 miles; travelled through countless city and county entities that required street, and highway permitting; involved an armada of vehicles (24’ trucks, 15’ box trucks, busses, cargo vans, passenger vans), enlisted the help of a team of Doctors, Nurses, Chiropractors, Massage Therapists, Acupuncturists to help the injured, tired, and sore cyclists; included working tirelessly with the California Highway Patrol to keep the riders safe; managing media requests to city, state, and national media outlets; not to mention coordinating six large parks needed to house a small city over 3,000 people in tents each night along with shower trucks, porta johns, and a crew to feed the hungry riders as she moved 60 – 90 miles each day down the winding roads of California.

After the ride, she began working with local community organizations on their fundraising events, as well as volunteering my time to be on committees for the City of West Hollywood’s Halloween Carnival and Parade, and the City of Santa Monica Women’s Baseball Association.

Prior to her families move across the country to Maryland in 2008, she was the senior staff member responsible for administration and management of daily academic and event facility scheduling for the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Denise oversaw 249,000 sq. ft of interior and 30,000 sq. ft. of exterior multi use spaces that played host to more than 800 annual events and conferences. She was also the director in charge of all of the schools signature events including commencement, fundraising dinners, and distinguished speakers programs.

Denise was present at last night’s College Park Day planning committee meeting at the City Hall, and was introduced to the event’s volunteers.

Welcome aboard to College Park Day, Denise!

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