Friday, July 30, 2021

Issue 87 editorial: Industry associations keep us going

Judith Rubin, InPark Magazine Editor

A piece of advice I always give to anyone looking for opportunity is to get involved with an association. This is something to do at any stage of your career. You don’t have to go it alone – there’s an organization for every industry, and likely more than one. And in the attractions sector, which is well served by a number of associations, you absolutely should not go it alone, because it’s an industry built on team culture and your relationships will get you to your next project. In addition, you simply can’t know everything, and things evolve quickly.

Some of the most vital education you will acquire will come through dialogue with your peers at industry gatherings. Our associations facilitate these gatherings. They deserve our thanks and support for the work they do to bring us together, help us network, share information and develop professionally.

And for what they did in the course of the pandemic, they deserve ten times the appreciation. At a time when resources were shrinking, uncertainty was growing and business was at a standstill, our associations regrouped. The learning curve was sometimes steep but the tools were available, and they found ways to deliver the services, community and continuity their members needed – including full conferences and trade shows, awards programs and publications. (I experienced this first-hand during my time as a senior staff member at the Themed Entertainment Association.)

We’re still in a hybrid situation now in regard to events. Some in- person gatherings have resumed, but for logistical reasons, a number of events are being brought to us virtually a second time around. Let’s pause now to acknowledge and appreciate those industry organizations that continue to do so much for our enrichment and the growth and betterment of our industry. They should not be taken for granted. Join, participate, sponsor, volunteer: support them as they support you.

IMAGE: Judith Rubin and industry peers at a Themed Entertainment Association event, 2019 (clockwise from top left: Matt Kent, Scenario; Joe Kleiman, InPark Magazine; Cory Rosen, Tippett Studio; Judith Rubin; Lisa Jey Schanley, Technomedia)

Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin ([email protected]) is a leading journalist, publicist, strategist, blogger, content marketing specialist and connector in the international attractions industry. She excels at writing about all aspects of design and technical design, production and project management. Areas of special interest include AV integration and show control, lighting design and acoustics, specialty cinema, digital video and world’s fairs. Judith has ties to numerous industry organizations. From 2005-2020 she ran communications, publications and social media for the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). In 2013, she was honored with the TEA Service Award. She was development director of IMERSA, and co-chair of the 2014 IMERSA Summit. She was publicist for the Large Format Cinema Association in the 1990s, now part of the Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA) and has also contributed to the publications of PLASA, IAAPA and the International Planetarium Society. Already making her mark as a magazine and book editor, Judith joined World’s Fair magazine in 1987, which introduced her to the attractions industry. Launching as a freelancer in the mid 1990s she has contributed to dozens of publications and media outlets including Funworld, Lighting&Sound America, Sound & Communications, Urban Land, The Raconteur and The Planetarian. She joined InPark in 2010. Judith earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute. She has lived in New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area, and now makes her home in Saint Louis, where she is active in the local arts and theater community.

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