From the Beacon, February 2024

A few weeks ago, the MMA welcomed more than 1,300 members to its 45th Annual Meeting & Trade Show. It was an amazing, record-breaking event that filled the Hynes Convention Center with an incredible energy that truly brought to life the meeting’s theme of “Turning Passion Into Action.” Ballroom A was abuzz as we heard from Gov. Maura Healey and Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll, listened to the remarks of keynote speakers Eddie Glaude Jr. and Gina McCarthy, and received updates from Washington D.C. from Senators Warren and Markey.

Personally, I cherished the opportunity to speak with a tremendous range of local officials over the course of the two days. Speaking with Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, members of Small Town Administrators of Massachusetts, and a Select Board member from the self-described “tiny town” of Leyden, among many others, really cemented for me that MMA members have a tremendous amount in common while simultaneously having diverse needs and challenges.

I have attended many MMA Annual Meetings over the years, but this was my first one serving as executive director of the association. As such, I am filled with so much gratitude for all of the work and dedication that went into making the event such a success.

I want to express my deep appreciation to all of the members who attended the Annual Meeting. As a former local official, I know how busy you all are. You have many priorities and emergent issues to manage, and the fact that you committed the time to be with us in Boston is very humbling. As I said during the opening session, the MMA derives its power from all of its members, and your presence over the course of the two-day event put that power clearly on display.

I’d also like to thank the numerous presenters and panelists for our workshops, who were so generous with their time and expertise. The workshops are the backbone of the learning aspect of Annual Meeting, and without the excellent array of expert presenters, this part of the event would not be possible. I want to give special thanks to Kiana Pierre-Louis and Michael Obasohan for presenting their diversity, equity and inclusion workshop in all three time slots, making sure that all attendees had ample opportunity to access this session.

Further, I’d like to express my gratitude to the many sponsors and exhibitors, who helped us in offering a tremendous lineup of speakers and filled a jam-packed Trade Show.

Finally, I want to share my most heartfelt appreciation and gratitude to the incredible MMA/MIIA staff, who worked tirelessly to make this event the success that it was. The staff works for months to pull together all the pieces of Annual Meeting and then works almost non-stop for days leading up to the conference, as well as over the course of the two-day conference. This event would not be possible without this committed team of people, and I am more appreciative of their efforts than words can adequately express.

As you might expect, the work to plan for the 2025 Annual Meeting has already begun. We are so excited about the new opportunity that the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center will provide us, and we look forward to seeing you all next Jan. 24 and 25 (and many times before then)!

Written by Adam Chapdelaine, MMA Executive Director & CEO