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Dallmeyer Celebrates 50 Years as a Trade Show Leader


Los Angeles, CA – Trade Show Executive Power Lunch interviewer extraordinaire Bob Dallmeyer marked his 50th anniversary in the trade show industry on March 25 — an admirable achievement in any sector, but particularly in one that has seen so much change over the past half-century.

Dallmeyer is a man of many talents — show organizer, exhibit manager, association leader, teacher, mentor, speaker, world traveler and journalist — who firmly believes that passion is a key to success in any industry. Over the past 50 years, he has aptly demonstrated his own passion for the trade show sector.

From his roots in Hartford as the exhibit manager for United Technologies right up to his role now as president of RD International, Dallmeyer has seen the highs and lows of the industry — and those of the USA — in his work and travels that have put him at the center of the Paris Air Show, the post-9/11 trauma in 2001, and in the growth of the industry overseas that led him to teach CEM classes in China, Mexico, Brazil and Europe. At United Technologies, he managed a $6 million budget (about $25,254,184 today). His experience there was the basis later for the exhibitor training and marketing programs he wrote for the Center for Exhibition Research (CEIR).

In addition to the shows he organized and managed, he has been the chair of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) and Trade Show Exhibitors Association (TSEA). He was chairman of IAEE in 2001 and was faced with rebuilding morale in the wake of the terrorist attacks that September.

Dallmeyer caught both the travel and teaching bug from his parents, chalking up 10 weeks on the road in Europe between high school and college and living by the mantra “if you really want to learn something, teach it.” He also counts writing as a hobby he started to hone in high school. While readers may know him best for the Power Lunch feature, he also has written a book of poetry.

In Dallmeyer’s eyes, today’s trade shows face new challenges, among them global economic challenges, market oversaturation and the threat of terrorism. He has seen the growth of convention centers and the increasing complexity of technology they offer. He has witnessed partnerships of show organizers with exhibitors, something unfathomable decades ago. Social media, mobile marketing and the digital revolution have made it easier, faster and more cost effective to market a trade show globally.

Looking ahead, Dallmeyer said he has no plans to retire anytime in the foreseeable future. “I intend to keep writing, lecturing and teaching CEMs as long as I’m relevant,” he said. And relevant he remains, judging by his heavy volume of fan mail and hectic schedule.

Reach Bob Dallmeyer at (323) 934-8300 or


Here are some postings on Bob’s Facebook page: 

Steve Barry of TWI: “Bob, we’re very proud to be your friends and you’ve certainly repaid the industry with everything you’ve given back. Bravo for 50 great years!”

Sandy Angus of The Montgomery Group: “What an achievement. Fantastic!  Hope you are doing something special to mark the day.  Here’s to the next 50. You are indefatigable and a legend.”

Jai Sokoloff Cole of Plum Communications, Inc.: “Bob, congratulations! Your enthusiasm is contagious. You have been an inspiration to all of us in the industry. To another 50 years!”

Barbara Stroup of Bodden Partners: “We are all blessed you found this opportunity and joined the industry. I, as many, wish to thank you for sharing your knowledge, friendship and guidance throughout the years, helping us grow in both our professional and personal lives. You are a class act my friend, a one-of-a-kind. Thank YOU!”

Jaqueline Russo of Kuehne & Nagle: “Congratulations on your 50th Anniversary in the exhibition industry.  How lucky we are that you found us.  You are a mentor, teacher, colleague and most of all, a wonderful friend.”