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Tammy Koolbeck, CVE Announced as the 2024 Charles A. McElravy Award Recipient

IAVM is pleased to announce Tammy Koolbeck, CVE, as the recipient of the 2024 Charles A. McElravy Award.

Currently, Koolbeck is the Executive Director of Stephens Auditorium at Iowa State University, a position she has held since 2015.  She is only the 5th Director to lead the organization since the venues opened in 1969.  She works for the Ames- based company, VenuWorks and has worked in the venue management industry for over 25 years. 

Before coming to Ames, Koolbeck was a senior member of the VenuWorks corporate staff as Senior Vice President/Chief Marketing Officer.  Prior to her corporate work, Koolbeck was Assistant Executive Director of Marketing and Programming for the U.S. Cellular Center Arena/Paramount Theatre and General Manager of the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena. Koolbeck started in the public assembly management field as the Director of Marketing for the Five Seasons Center and Paramount Theater.  Her past work experience includes hotel, convention and visitor bureau, and professional sports.

Koolbeck has been a member of IAVM since 2001.  She served as the 2019-2020 Chair for the International Association of Venue Managers Board of Directors and is currently heavily involved in the Association’s federal and state advocacy efforts.  In 2014 and in 2021, she was honored with IAVM’s Chairman Citation. She currently serves as Chair on IAVM’s Board of Regents, on the Industry Affairs and Governance Committees, and serves as a mentor.

“I am excited to celebrate Tammy and her contributions to IAVM and our industry at VenueConnect,” stated Brad Mayne, IAVM CEO and President. “Tammy was instrumental in the advocacy work that IAVM did during the COVID-19 pandemic. Her volunteerism and service to IAVM have  been extraordinary, and we are honored to name her as the 2024 Charles A. McElravy Award winner.”

“Tammy has served on countless committees and ultimately as the chair of our association in 2020 during an unprecedented year,” said Kerry Painter, CVE, CEM, CMP, IAVM’s Chair of the Board of Directors. “We will forever remember the advocacy efforts she engaged in which resulted in millions of recovery dollars for our industry. I could not be happier to congratulate Tammy as a perfect representation of the McElravy award.”

Upon being notified of receiving the award, Koolbeck stated, “To join the list of McElravy honorees means a lot, as it’s nominated by IAVM members and awarded by the IAVM Board of Directors.  This association has so many great volunteer leaders and members that I’ve had the opportunity to connect with and develop long term relationships with over the years, and I am the fortunate one to be a part of this great community of peers.  I’m definitely the recipient of many hours of shared wisdom and knowledge from others as passionate about this industry as I am, and I sincerely appreciate this recognition.”

Koolbeck will be presented with the award at VenueConnect 2024, which is being held in Portland, Oregon, July 28-31.  For more information on VC24 or to register, please visit


Source: International Association of Venue Managers (

Author: Amy Fitzpatrick, Director of Marketing of IAVM

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