Sep 22 - 25, 2019 | National Harbor, Md.

Convention Central

“Ladies and gentlemen, the General Session will begin in five minutes.”

Those are familiar words to loyal NAMIC Annual Convention attendees. Yet, this phrase won’t be heard at the 124thevent this September. The reason?

The general sessions’ stage received a naming makeover this year and will be know as the Main Stage.

“We are always working to keep this annual member gathering fresh and inviting. I’ve always felt the word ‘general’ signaled something ‘common’ or ‘basic;’ yet, we want NAMIC events to feel anything but,” said Kristen Spriggs, NAMIC’s senior vice president of member development. “We want Convention to be special and exciting.

“This is where the industry comes together, after all,” she continued. “So, we finally found the right words to describe our time together each morning, words that signify the place where we want to gather in community with you and present our featured speakers.”

Don’t worry, the morning sessions and the traditions that come with them aren’t going away. The Main Stage is still where the Parade of Flags and national anthems will serve as the official Convention kickoff. And it’s still where you’ll hear NAMIC updates and watch NAMIC leadership share their remarks. It’s also where we’ll weave in stories of mutuality and service … because that is who we are as an industry.

The Main Stage is where we make our biggest investment of education dollars and bring you inspirational speakers and world-renowned experts who will share insights, talk about trends, and help you take away ideas to improve your operations. This year’s keynote speakers will bring lessons of leadership and overcoming obstacles as well as ideas to help spark innovation.

Sarah Thomas will take the Main Stage Monday morning to share her story of overcoming adversity and beating the stereotypes on her path to becoming the first female to officiate an National Football League playoff game – and the first female to officiate in the league in general. 

Entrepreneur, author, and disruptive innovator Josh Linker will join us on the Main Stage Wednesday morning. He will use his energy and experience to inspire the audience to break through the status quo to embrace creativity and innovation. 

Be on the lookout for more Main Stage speaker and entertainment announcements in the coming weeks.

“Every year the committee starts with a long list of ideas and possible speakers to consider. We want to offer diversity of topic, style, message, and personal interest while making it entertaining,” Spriggs said. “We think about what issues needs our attention or need a spotlight on our program lineup.

“I’m excited about this year’s event because we will feature something a little unexpected each day,” she continued. “So, don’t think you can sneak in fifteen minutes late because you know the traditional schedule … you’ll miss out on something really cool.”

Doors open 30 minutes prior to the start of the daily Main Stage sessions. Arrive early to take in all the action, but don’t worry, we’ll save you a seat.


Lindsay Robison
Content Manager and Editor