Mary Higham, CEM
33, Manager of Exhibits and Sponsorships
American Society for Industrial Security International, Alexandria, Va.
What I do: “I handle all trade show sponsorship logistics, exhibitor engagement, exhibit hall operations and our exhibitor new product competition. We brought our exhibit sales in-house last year, and I now also oversee [that] team.”
What I really do: “I’m the exhibitor whisperer. I use the melodious sound of my voice to calm upset exhibitors and find resolutions for their complaints and concerns.”
How she got here: With a classical mythology degree from University of Maryland, Higham took a position at The Optical Society, the first paying job with benefits she could find. Later, she [worked at] American Association of Blood Banks, and then joined ASIS in 2012.
Next-level numbers: In four years, Higham has increased sponsorship revenue by more than 53 percent, grown the total number of sponsor companies by 30 percent and increased net revenue from new product competition by 185 percent.