***updated at 3:45 p.m. with additional information***
FAIRFAX, Va. — The National Pest Management Association board of directors voted unanimously on Wednesday to host PestWorld as a virtual convention. This will include NPMA's world class keynote speakers, educational sessions (CEUs) and the largest trade show in the pest control industry. Dates for V-Pestworld will be Oct. 13-16 as planned.
NPMA conducted significant market research, both qualitative and quantitative with all stakeholders including members, past attendees, speakers and suppliers. Significant data points for consideration included the fact that Nashville recently reverted to a modified Phase 2 format, limiting group gatherings to a maximum of 25 people; the mayoral announcement that this phase would be in place for the foreseeable future; an infection rate for the Covid-19 virus trending higher in Nashville, self-quarantine imposed by states visiting Tennessee; travel bans and of course the health and safety concerns for all attendees.
“Many of our sponsors, exhibitors, speakers and pest control companies have a travel ban in place through the remainder of 2020 so they would not be able to attend any face to face events,” said Alexis Wirtz, Senior Vice President Meetings and Conventions for NPMA.
“It’s not an easy path for any of us, and none of us have a roadmap to rely on. After several months of looking at multiple options on how to host PestWorld 2020, the Board voted unanimously today to put into action what we feel is the best option for the industry,” said Scott Steckel, president of the NPMA. “We are really pleased that the PMP and supplier communities have expressed such overwhelming support of NPMA and this V-convention. We look forward to an exciting event,” Steckel said.
“With the decision of the Board, our focus now shifts to planning and executing the best virtual convention possible for our industry. Although I’m disappointed we couldn’t all get together in Nashville this October, I’m hopeful that a virtual event will allow for an even greater participation from those in our industry,” said Justin McCauley, NPMA President-Elect.