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New Board Chair for LGBT MPA

Written by Linda Hohnholz

Today, the LGBT Meeting Professionals Association (LGBT MPA) announces Derrick Johnson, II, CMP, DES as the new Executive Board Chairperson. Johnson succeeds Jim Clapes, the current Board Chairman of LGBT MPA, the first and only organization solely committed to the professional advancement of LGBTQ+ meeting professionals.

Johnson is currently the Director of Event Strategy and Development for Tally Management Group (TMG) where he adds value to partner goals through event strategy design. He was recently named Talley’s Chief Diversity Officer with strategic oversight of TMG’s inclusion, equity and diversity strategy.

“Johnson is the ideal board member to take us forward,” said Jim Clapes, Events Manager for The Specialty Food Association. “Derrick’s experience in meeting planning, education and technology is the right combination for our future.”

Johnson is a PCMA Board Member and the facilitator of their Digital Event Strategist Certification Course. This seven-week interactive course covers how to effectively plan, produce, and measure the results of live stream and digital engagement events. Johnson’s technical expertise includes the use of software analytics and AI for strategic initiatives and elevating meeting performance. He has implemented cloud-based systems. i.e., CVENT and Salesforce to align with strategic initiatives and meet business goals.

 “I have chosen to be active in the LGBT MPA because I feel diversity and inclusion is key to elevating the meeting’s industry and our world as a whole,” said Derrick Johnson, new Board Chairperson of the LGBT MPA. “By fostering this sense of community around the LGBTQ+ community, diverse groups are brought together towards the common goals of networking and personal/professional growth.

More About Derrick M. Johnson, II, CMP, DES

Johnson has been on the Executive Board of LBGT MPA since 2017. Also active in PCMA, he has served on their Board of Directors since 2019 and served on PCMA’s Foundation Board of Trustees 2017 – 2019. Johnson has received many industry recognitions including one of 2019’s top meeting influencers.

He has a Certificate in Artificial Intelligence: Implications for Business Strategy from MIT, the Digital Event Strategist (DES) credential from PCMA and is a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP). A graduate of the University of Florida, Derrick holds a Master of Science in Business Leadership and Management from Western Governors University.

About the LGBT MPA

The LGBT MPA is the first and only organization solely committed to the professional advancement of LGBT+ meeting professionals. The LGBT MPA Board of Directors have years of experience and are devoted to networking, educating and mentoring to develop successful business leaders who continue the work of promoting the essential elements of inclusivity and diversity throughout the profession.

David Jefferys, President and CEO of the Altus Agency, a Philadelphia-based marketing enterprise firm specializing in LGBTQ+ travel, founded the LGBT MPA in August 2016. The LGBT MPA is a 501c3 organization based in Philadelphia, PA. Membership for LGBT Meeting Professionals is free. To join the organization, visit  

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