Gianna Cardinale Gaudini, 37
Global Head of Events, Training and Certification for Amazon Web Services; Author, “The Art of Event Planning”; San Francisco
What I do:
My passion for connecting people is what led me to build a career in events, but it’s the opportunities to build community and evocative experiences that drives me forward. I’m a storyteller, author, and strategic corporate event leader, coach and consultant with a passion for building memorable experiences. Most recently, I’ve built and led a team, event and community strategy as the Amazon Web Services Global Head of Events, Training and Certification, and as the Global Head of Events for the SoftBank Vision Fund after previously running events for Google for nine years. I specialize in elevated experience and content development for VIPs, creating elite events that nurture the startup and investor ecosystem, community-building events and initiatives, including brand and partnerships, and women’s events and initiatives.
How I got here:
I previously spent close to a decade producing Google’s most high-profile events and experiences, managing everything from 30,000-person-plus Google Cloud events to product launches and movie premieres, and handling teams of up to 200 people. In 2019, some former Google colleagues recruited me to go build a new event program and team at SoftBank Vision Fund as global head of events, where I loved the exposure to the VC/startup community and helping founders change the world. Due to COVID-19, we had to cancel our event program, which led me back to running global events for hundreds of thousands of attendees at AWS.
My greatest career accomplishment:
Writing and publishing my book, “The Art of Event Planning,” which has become a powerful platform for engaging the event professional community, inspiring others and meeting so many brilliant people along the way.
A specific improvement I’ve made:
I believe it’s important to “invent and simplify” and “dig deep.” At each new team I have joined, I have developed a brand playbook and operating procedures to streamline the way we work and also drive consistency in how we show up in the world. I also lead with strategy and data and rigorously drive KPIs when establishing event goals and objectives. By making time to analyze the results of our events and conduct gap analysis, my team is much more strategic when it comes to where we invest time and resources.
What I'm working on right now:
I am working with universities on integrating with their curriculum and coaching students and professionals who want to build or improve their career in event planning.