• Meet Meghan Gustafson and Christie Altendorf, Definition of Teamwork

    FROM THE Summer 2019 ISSUE

    Meghan Gustafson and Christie Altendorf, co-chairs of ILEA Live 2019, talk about the event’s return to Minneapolis and how they’re working together to pull off an event to remember.

MNM+E: What are your backgrounds in the industry and how did you get involved with ILEA Live?

MG: My current position is director of events and programs for the Minneapolis Downtown Council. Prior to that, I planned fundraising events for The Basilica of Saint Mary. I’ve been a member of ILEA for about 12 years. I’ve been on the advisory board since 2015, and I was president from 2015-16.

CA: I currently work for D’Amico Catering as the catering events and marketing manager. I became a member of ILEA nine years ago, starting in a community role planning the Star Awards. I then moved to the governors board of chapters and was president after Meghan from 2016-17.

MNM+E: As co-chairs of the event, how do you two divide your responsibilities?

MG: We work as a really great team. Christie brings a real creativity to things, and I bring committee experience. There is a great cohesiveness to our relationship; I’m the straightforward one and she is the diplomat.

CA: We have a great working connection and bring different strengths to the team. We help each other out when workloads ebb and flow. Meghan’s production knowledge is incredible. She gets stuff done and I’m the one who makes sure everyone is happy and on board.

MNM+E: What are your plans for ILEA Live 2019?

CA: Amazing education will be the core of this conference. The goal is creating an atmosphere of inspiration and intentional connections. Attendees won’t come here and build spreadsheets and marketing plans—they will learn how to enrich all aspects of their lives with creativity.

MG: We also want to feature locally what Minneapolis is about: the music scene, the wonderful food and the fantastic art, to name a few. We’re bookending the event with an opening night party at First Avenue and tours of Paisley Park on the last day.

MNM+E: What, in your opinions, makes Minneapolis a great destination for ILEA Live 2019?

MG: This is the first time that ILEA Live has returned to a city, and they chose Minneapolis. Our local chapter has won Chapter of the Year more than anyone else. People are taking us seriously as a destination. We have some really unique opportunities here, and we want to show how much there is to do 365 days of the year.

CA: I think Meghan really hit on all of the touch points. We really want to capture what a well-rounded community we are.

League City CVB manager Stephanie Polk shares her career journey.

Originally from Kentwood, Louisiana, Stephanie Polk, TDM, CTE, first made her mark on the travel and tourism industry as director of marketing for the Beaumont Convention & Visitors Bureau. There, she helped to elevate the city as a destination for recreation travelers and business groups. Wowed by her accomplishments, in 2020, League City brought her on board to lead its marketing efforts. She shares with us highlights and advice from her experience in the industry. 


For Andrea Mokros, Minneapolis-based public relations executive and independent event consultant, the last decade has been a whirlwind. From serving as special assistant to President Obama and director of strategic planning for then-first lady Michelle Obama, to welcoming newcomers to the Bold North as the vice president of communications and events for the Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee, Mokros shares the key takeaways that inspire her work today.