Conference

  • 2020 Annual Training Conference
  • COVID-19 Response
  • Registration
  • Hotel & Travel Information
  • Exhibitor Info
  • Award Nominations
  • Agenda
  • Election
  • Silent Auction
  • APAI Tours
  • Conference History
  • 2019 ATC Photos
  • Training

  • Audio Training
  • Affiliate Trainings
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

    Dear APAI Members and Attendees:

    It is with great sadness and disappointment that we announce that APAI’s 2020 Annual Training Conference will not be taking place in Nashville in April of 2020. State and Federal Emergency declarations, along with recommendations from CDC, Nashville Metro Public Health, and Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation allowed us to void our contract with the hotel.

    This was an incredibly difficult decision for the APAI Executive Committee, as we understand the importance of this conference and how hard so many of our committee members have worked to prepare this for each of you. Our Professional Development Committee worked tirelessly to create a robust agenda and our Host Committee worked to make this conference a great success and unforgettable time for our attendees. The diversity of workshop topics, the dignitaries arranged, and the activities planned all worked together to create what would have been one of the best conferences yet. We are devastated that we will not experience "Parole: International Perspectives, Common Goals" at this time. Thank you so much to each of our committee members for your hard work. It is our hope that we can reschedule this, with as few changes as possible, to still be able to host this conference for our attendees.

    In the following days, in collaboration with the hotel, Executive Committee, and Host Committee we will explore a multitude of rescheduling options for APAI. Nashville is an incredible city and we would love to bring our attendees there for the atmosphere, training, and networking opportunities. As stated in our previous communication, we ask for your patience in the coming weeks. As we explore the rescheduling options, we will be holding off on processing refunds. We hope to make an announcement by the end of March or early April about this option and we will process refunds and at the same juncture inform you of our future plans. We will be working with our financial offices to streamline the process once refunds begin being processed.

    We are hopeful that we can help flatten the curve of COVID-19 and believe it is something we can and should do as an organization. Our members' health and safety are of the utmost importance. We invite you to take a look at the questions below for answers to questions we expect may commonly arise.

    This will create a trying time for our association, but with your patience and support, we will come out stronger. We send our warmest regards to our APAI family and best wishes for yours and your loved ones health during this global crisis. We look forward to the hugs and handshakes in person soon.


    David Blumberg, President


    Ashley Koonce, Executive Director

     

    Questions

    Once we have information about rescheduling, we will let you know. If we are not able to host the conference this year, we will begin the process of issuing refunds. This action will take some time as we only have one person who can process the refunds and with multiple conferences impacted, the University processing times may be slowed.

    Please consider letting us “hold” your sponsorship until decisions are made regarding the reschedule. This would help the organization immensely. I also ask for input or ideas concerning exhibitor or sponsor steps. I can assure you that prices will not be raised for 2021 and that of course, you will be given a refund if you ask. For products sponsored, we request that you allow us to retain the funds to cover the costs of these, as they will be used next year. Thanks for your understanding and support for our association.

    The hotel has canceled all hotel reservations. No action should be necessary on your part

    When you call your airline, be sure to tell them that your conference was canceled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Most airlines are being lenient due to COVID-19.

    There will be no change in the election timeline or process, other than the announcement of the winners. The announcement is typically made during the Business Meeting. This year, we will announce the winners via email, after the elections close. The elections will still be open in the same manner as if the conference were being held. Voting will open at 12:01 am Eastern, April 2, 2020 and will close at 5:30 pm Central on April 6, 2020. Election Results will be given during the Annual Business Meeting on April 7, 2020.

    This is a great question and one that we have spent an incredible amount of time attempting to answer. We have reviewed the association's current financial status, as well as the impact of not holding the conference. The Annual Conference is currently the association's only source of income, so the inability to host the conference does present an economic situation, which we will work to overcome during the year. If you are aware of any grant or funding sources available for our association, we encourage you to contact the Executive Director.

    Additionally, in accordance with our bylaws, we will make our proposed 2020-2021 budget available to the membership in April, just as we do each year at the Annual Business Meeting. Once you have reviewed that, please do not hesitate to reach out to ask any questions you may have.

    APAI leadership has been discussing COVID-19 for the last few weeks, and more recently every day, almost every hour. We have been in contact with our hotel consultants, emergency management experts, and other industry experts. We closely monitored all relevant websites, including Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation, Metro Nashville Public Health, the CDC, and the Tennessee Department of Health, and centered our discussions around the most current recommendations from each, as they changed. APAI agreed to keep members informed with emails as the situation changed, with a hope of providing updates every two to three days. We also created a web page with links to all relevant websites and our most current statement on the situation.

    APAI started looking at this option even before our first announcement was made, as the health of each of you is truly what is most important. Unfortunately, at that time, due to contractual obligations and because there were no CDC travel notices for areas with any person registered to attend, as well as Tennessee authorities not recommending the postponement or cancelation of such events, canceling at that time would have required penalty fees for breach of contract, which financially would have ruined the association.

    On March 12, 2020, updated CDC recommendations and the Tennessee State of Emergency Declaration allowed the association to re-discuss cancellation under an event of force majeure with the hotel. Within one hour of the declaration from the Tennessee Governor, a conference call was scheduled for March 13, 2020, with the hotel to discuss cancelation. On March 13, 2020, the call was postponed for approximately three hours, so that all parties could watch the Presidential Press Conference. With the National State of Emergency Declaration, we were able to confirm that a cancelation under an event of force majeure would apply, resulting in no financial penalties. We sent correspondence to members, attendees, and sponsors immediately, to allow for those who still had travel arrangements made to be able to adjust those.

    We want to reiterate that the only reason this was not "canceled" earlier, was simply because we would not have been able to afford the penalties and still exist. We had to wait until events took place which would allow us to invoke force majeure and to cancel without penalty, but at no time did we ever intend to put any person's health at risk. We would have allowed for full refunds and cancelations, whether we ever had the option to officially cancel.

    Our Professional Development Committee worked extremely hard on putting together one of the best agendas we have had to date. We will be working with them, as well as our speakers to prepare another incredible agenda.

    Our Annual Awards are one of the most exciting parts of the Annual Conference. The awards had already been determined and we will be working with our Executive Committee to decide the best way to honor these deserving recipients.

    Great question! The most important thing we need at this time is patience. Please be patient as we sort out the issues of canceling and trying to arrange a reschedule. With the exception of our Executive Director, APAI runs on all volunteers.

    Second, promote your APAI connections. This organization is strong because of each of you.

    Lastly, wash your hands and stay home if you are sick! We cannot wait to see each of you at the next conference! I promise to keep everyone updated on when and where that is! We will have so much to celebrate next year and we look forward to seeing you all!