OLS alumna plans for a living

This story was originally posted on 9/24/10.

Tammy (Vandeveer) Wiley has received a lot of attention lately, for her past success and her future potential. As president and owner of Brownsburg, Ind.-based Professional Conventions and Meetings Inc. (ProCaM), she won an Infuse Initiative award to help her successful company increase its exposure and market share. She worked hard for her success, working her way through a varied career. Most recently, she bought out her ProCaM partner to become the sole owner in 2003. “When I graduated from Purdue in 1993, I never would have pictured being where I am today,” she says. “The possibilities were endless. I pictured myself in a manufacturing department or in human resources at a factory. Now I can’t picture doing anything else.” Her duties entail being the logistics person behind large and small meetings and events across the country and internationally. While she was happy with her company’s results, she had never taken the time to create a marketing plan. Instead, she relied on word-of-mouth recommendations and repeat customers. When she heard about Infuse Initiative and its list of pro bono professional services, she applied for the grant, focusing on the strategic marketing aspect. As she has taken advantage of the cadre of services, she has found them to be just as beneficial. “I have found that I am getting so much out of the other services,” she says. “The accounting and bookkeeping component has been helpful. The legal services are helping me create an employee handbook. And the technology support is helping me whittle down what I’m paying out in communications services.” As Wiley and her company receive this business makeover, she still must maintain the services they’ve become known for. One of ProCaM’s biggest events will take place in December: the International Motorsports Industry Show. In only its second year, the show has already doubled in size, and the City of Indianapolis has signed a lifetime contract to host the event. Wiley says it is one of the top 50 fastest growing tradeshows in the country. Wiley believes her organizational leadership and supervision classes at Purdue have been very helpful to her. “It was the classes where I stood in front of class and gave a presentation that helped me most,” she says. “The ones that required group projects, where you had to work together and go from A to Z logistically and then present in front of a class.” She’ll continue to receive lots of practice in logistics and presentations in the coming months and years. As Indianapolis hosts Super Bowl XLVI in 2012, Wiley anticipates the need for local meeting planners. She also hopes to move forward on ProCaM’s plans to build a dedicated banquet hall and meeting facility in the Brownsburg area, just northwest of Indianapolis. The plan received seed money from a local economic development business plan competition in 2007. Wiley is now courting investors to help make the plan a reality.