Hello! My name is Amy Pfaffenbach and I am the Director of Meetings & Events here at AVLS. When I joined the Society back in September 2017, when we were still in San Leandro, CA, and known as the American College of Phlebology, I was hired on as the first remote employee. So it was a whole new world, not only for me working from home but also for my co-workers who never worked with someone who lived on the other side of the country! I live in Connecticut with my husband, Ken, my 4-year-old son, Mason, and our 2 dogs, Bocephus, Bo for short (pitbull), and Chevelle (American Bulldog). We also are expecting our second child in June 2021!
Planning meetings and events has been a passion of mine ever since I started working weddings part-time while in college (Johnson & Wales University, Providence, RI). I liked how it was something different every time I went to work, even though it was still a wedding/social event. You always needed to be quick on your toes, think fast, and improvise when a problem occurred, but needed to be discreet, so no one else knew there was an issue. Lucky for me, my major was Sports/Entertainment/Events Management, so it was an easy transition from studying Sports Management to Events Management. I transitioned from weddings and social events to medical conferences back in 2011 when I worked for the International Society for Clinical Densitometry. The complexity of planning a medical conference intrigues me, as it is typically 4 days with many different aspects to plan, rather than one evening for only 5 hours.
My biggest accomplishment while working at AVLS was planning and executing the successful 2018 Congress in Nashville, TN. Yes, it was certainly teamwork by everyone, and I could not have done it without them, but officially being the Director of Meetings & Events, knowing it was my responsibility, was riveting. We start working on Congress 18 months in advance, so when it is finally here, it is very satisfying being knee-deep, making sure everything goes smoothly and that everyone is having a great time. Seeing the smiles and hearing laughter from our members/attendees at Congress is the most satisfying feeling I can get from my job.
Random fact – my favorite movie is The Blind Side. Sandra Bullock is one of my all-time favorite actresses, and the story of Michael Oher’s life and success is simply amazing!