Heather Reid, ARCT, MSc, DES, 56
Founder and CEO, Planner Protect Inc., London, Ontario
What I do:
I founded Planner Protect Inc. in 2016 to address a significant gap in our Canadian meetings industry—education and consulting on contracts. To acquire in-depth education about event contracts, I needed to access American legal counsel. The services I provide now include forensic-level contract reviews, negotiations, and education to Canadian destinations and industry partners. Since 1994, I’ve also owned full-service event planning agency Innovative Conferences & Communications, which specializes in Canadian associations’ conferences.
My greatest career accomplishment:
In the aftermath of COVID-19, I conceived of a Canadian national initiative to document the efforts of event planners as they worked to reconfigure their events. The execution of the initiative, featuring 38 interviewees, was done in collaboration with Heidi Wilker, CMP emeritus.
What I am excited to be working on right now:
In this industrywide pause due to COVID, I made the decision to go back to school full time for a yearlong, accelerated program for paralegal studies. I’m garnering in-depth knowledge of Canadian law. I’m loving it!
Conceptualizing and building a first-of-its-kind Canadian boutique consulting agency (Planner Protect Inc.) from the ground up has been one of my greatest sources of professional joy. The average avoided risk and cash savings per contract is $27,000-$35,000 and the cumulative, tracked result to date is over $8.5 million. Planner Protect Inc. is helping clients protect their events “one contract at a time.”
What I do outside of work:
Volunteering within the industry has been important to me. What you invest in, comes back ten-fold! Several years back, I spent two terms on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Society of Professional Event Planners, and I am currently serving on the Board of Directors of the PCMA Canada East Chapter. I’ve had the privilege of chairing the national conference of CanSPEP in 2018 and co-chairing PMCA CIC 2019, and am looking forward to co-chairing PCMA CIC 2021, too.
Favorite vacation destination:
While I have not traveled extensively outside of Canada, I have explored my own beautiful country from coast to coast on numerous occasions. My favorite Canadian destination would be any red dirt road in the province of Prince Edward Island—especially if it leads to the Atlantic Ocean.
Your favorite inspirational quote:
“It’s your game; make up your own rules.” —Barbara Corcoran
Public figure I admire most: