Well, it's done. FMC Policy Summit 2009 is over. I'm very proud of the conference we put on. I'm also in an unfamiliar place personally as a result. This multi-day, three-ring circus of a conference has been my goal for a few years...and now it's a goal attained.
Graduating high school and college count as milestones reached, but those were expectations as much as achievements and weren't choices I made. Moving to DC and making a life here is a personal goal that I've also seen through (four years today, as a matter of fact!) Organizing this conference was different though, because it was the first long-term professional goal that I chose and embraced.
What also makes this moment unique for me is that there isn't an obvious next step. When I graduated from high school, the next step was college. When I graduated college, the next step was getting a job that had something to do with college. Those were questions and answers that were anticipated and prepared for. But I didn't anticipate these questions to spring up right now: What's the next big goal? What drives me professionally now? Are incremental goals enough for the moment?
All questions I'll be figuring out how to answer. But don't mistake me, this is a very cool place to be. Having decided to do something and then succeeding is a point of pride and glee.
As to the conference itself, here were a few of the moments that stand out:
- The sight of the line to get into our SRO crowd on the first day. I know we put on a great conference, but I never really believe other people agree until they start arriving
- Finally getting to see Copyright Criminals; trailer here
- Rob Kaye's hair (one day we'll get him to dye/shave the FMC logo into his head before he arrives)
- We had to get a campus group to relocate their canned food drive when we arrived which resulted in statements like "I gotta go get rid of the food drive."
- Maps, directions, signs, maps, more directions, bad directions, driving directions, what if they take our signs down?, no clue how to direct you here, and the wonderful volunteers who took it upon themselves to stand at strategic locations and direct people
- Sorta making the live video feed work and "beaming" Peter DiCola in for the sampling panel
- The rock show...and having already seen it before so missing the last half wasn't so tragic
- Scene from Office Space + the room above + two turntables = Mike Relm soundchecking on Tuesday morning
- Our closing night cocktail party at the Eighteenth Street Lounge
- Thursday evening after the Summit at 7:46 PM, when I shut my computer down and realized the marathon was over