so the AWC Top Michigan Women in Computing Gala was Saturday night. It was a bit more chaotic than I'd expected, from the running it end. The reception went smoothly but the coat room was far from the entrance most came in and registration table was even further, and then our group didn't get access to the dining room to set it up as early as they were expecting. They also found putting together the name tags took longer than anticipated, so when I got there at 5:30 our greeters were still up in a hotel room helping with the name badges. The table layout to preassign corporate tables in the room and show people where to find them that I had suggested didn't happen and we had to hustle to get some sponsors their tables because we were missing signs to reserve them, but dinner was served to all and the awards ceremony went well.
The hotel (the Novi Sheraton) had cleverly told Lisa the banquet room could only hold 23 tables when it could in fact hold 25, and that saved us. Their catering servers so far as I interacted with them were also terrific. On the other hand, they were completely incorrect about which door everyone would come in, and for this event, that was something it would have been much, much better to be right about. I'm going to be looking for another location for next year, I think.
(it was fun to see everyone's outfits though.. it was a "black tie optional" event, very posh.)
Teri Takai was a terrific speaker and I was all around impressed with her as a person - we all were. She's very personable.
There were lots of other impressive women there, most of whom I didn't get to meet. That was mainly because I was posted as a greeter at the door most people did _not_ come in, so I guess I'm a little extra bitter about that. They all came past me, and I helped direct them through the maze of hallways to the registration desk, but most of them didn't pause long enough to say hi. I was particularly grateful for the few who did, however.
I gave the closing remarks after the award ceremony and it went quite well, I'm pleased to say. People laughed where they were supposed to and started clapping after the quote, which I did not expect. I received complements afterward on the speech and how clearly I spoke. It wasn't a long speech, but I'm really glad I got that opportunity to be visible, because otherwise as a job search/networking opportunity, this event was something of a bust.
I guess the way to make it not a bust is to take advantage of all the contact info I now have for all these incredible women and let them know I'm looking for a job. I'll work on that.