Blair Walther, 29
Director of Events, Forbes, Jersey City, N.J.
What I do:
As a logistics lead, I manage the timelines and coordination between the various teams related to live and virtual events, including our internal sales, design, PR, event partnerships, audience development and programming teams, and all external vendors related to the event. Since starting virtual events in 2020, I am responsible for assisting in the execution of more than 70 online events.
How I got here:
I began my career in philanthropy as a wish coordinator with the Make-A-Wish Foundation of New Jersey. This is where I realized my passion for creating something special for others. I then joined Forbes, where I helped with the execution of the Forbes Women’s Summit as an executive coordinator for Moira Forbes.
My greatest career accomplishment:
An event I have been working on since its inception in 2016 is the Forbes & Audi Idea Incubator. Teams of female NYU students from the Tandon School of Engineering work on a challenge voted on at the Forbes Women’s Summit for a prize of scholarship money.
Forbes CMO London was the very first international event that I ever managed. I had never seen the venue, been in the country or worked with any of the vendors before. With only a few hiccups along the way, it ended up being a great success and an even greater learning experience.
I maintained 100% compliance on budgets for the past three years, and negotiated down F&B costs for the Forbes on Fifth event space by 12%.
A specific improvement I’ve made:
When we implemented virtual events, I realized that our design team needed a project manager to not only stream communication through the multiple event stakeholders, but also manage and dictate timelines for the influx of inquiries and requests. I took on that role in June 2020, and we have created new processes that have reduced the strain on the design team and established transparency into the design process for our numerous team members.
What I'm working on now:
I am very excited to be working on our Under 30 event series this year. This is the 10-year anniversary of our Under 30 list, which makes it extra special. The Under 30 community is engaging, diverse and just fun to be around. We have lots of surprises in store.
What I do outside of work:
I am an event chair on my sorority alumni executive board, where I plan events to foster the relationships between sisters. I am also a new Peloton owner, which has become my No. 1 stress reliever! My dog, Maui, is an adorable dachshund/pit mix, and helps to make sure I’m never bored working from home.
Favorite vacation destination:
Favorite icebreaker line:
If you had to delete all but three apps from your phone, which ones would you keep?
I always put together a very compact health kit. Advil, Tums, tissues—anything I may need at a moment’s notice for myself or others.