By Ashley Stone, CFE
I recently attended the Middle Tennessee Chapter’s 19th Annual Fraud Conference, March 9-10 at the One Century Place Conference Center in Nashville.
More than 250 attendees from around the state were at the event which featured presentations by ACFE Regent Tiffany Couch, CFE, CPA/CFF, former Regent Don Mullinax, CFE, CIA and ACFE faculty member Walter Manning, CFE.
“We have a lot of return attendees each year that have come to expect a well-executed event with first-rate speakers,” chapter president Michael Baer, CFE said. The easiest part of planning the conference is the location. We have a long-term relationship with the conference center, and due to our conference being held around the same time each year, we are able to sign the contract a year in advance,” Baer said.
Still, the chapter faces challenges with keeping the pricing of the event low enough to attract state of Tennessee workers that make up the majority of attendees. “We have kept the cost of our conference at the same price for the past five years, however finding and obtaining commitments from dynamic speakers and keeping the costs manageable are a constant challenge. If the price increases, the state will not send attendees,” Baer said.
Baer said the financial success of this event is of critical importance because it enables the chapter to fund other initiatives throughout the year like the chapter’s Member Benefit Day.
“The Member Benefit Day held earlier this year resulted in 20 new members for the chapter. We offer a full day of CPE and snacks. Members attend at no charge and non-members pay $25,” Baer said.
Baer also said the conference helps fund a scholarship program that awards five $1,000 scholarships and one $1,500 scholarship each year.
I would like to thank Michael and the rest of the chapter board (pictured below) for their hospitality while I was in Nashville and congratulate them on another successful event.