Sponsored by Lane Powell

Powerlist: Meeting perspectives

| Print |  Email
Articles - March 2014
Tuesday, February 25, 2014


Bruce headshotBruce Goldberg

Director, Events and Catering Sales
Portland Art Museum

Oregon Business: Why are so many “unique meeting venues” like museums, zoos and historic sites hosting business events these days?

Bruce Goldberg: You’re dealing with a more sophisticated client than in years past. Their exposure to TV and magazines and the Internet has made their demand for something unique that much greater. That demand for unique venues actually spans well outside of the type of venues you just mentioned. They now include things like refabricated warehouses, parking garages and buildings in the process of development, you name it. It makes for a more interesting event when people can’t go, “Oh, right, it’s another event at that hotel in that ballroom and having that menu.” I think the clients out there are demanding it.

OB: How important are private events to PAM? 

BG: The revenue source for the museum is essential. The museum’s a nonprofit, so much like charging tickets for people to walk through the gallery, the revenue that’s generated from events goes straight to the bottom line and supports the operation of the facility. We do well in excess of 400 events a year.

OB: What types of companies and organizations book events at PAM?

BG: All manner of businesses, individuals, groups and nonprofits throughout the country who, for whatever reason, find themselves in Portland. The art museum probably is responsible for the lion’s share of the more high-profile nonprofit events. Plus, you’ve got convention business. There are a handful of large corporate clients that make use of our facility — the Nikes, the Columbia Sportswears. We have everything from small meetings to major multiday events that involve primary registration areas and breakout rooms. 

OB: Do art collections influence the event business?

BG: Yeah, but to a lesser degree than you might think. A variety of our clients will respond very positively to the notion of incorporating museum tours as part of their overall event package. For example, if somebody were planning a dinner or a fundraiser, and we suggested they give their guests the opportunity to go through anywhere from one to four floors of the CMCA wing, you’d be amazed how many people that hadn’t even occurred to. There are specific exhibits; the most recent that had a very large impact on overall business would have been the “Allure of the Automobile” exhibit about two years ago. Because that covered such a wide demographic of interests, everything from car enthusiasts to art and design students, there were people who had never set foot in a museum in their lives. And as a result, there were a lot of events tailored to appeal to that broad demographic.

OB: What are your expectations for event business at PAM in the coming years?

BG: Short of a repeat of what happened in 2008 or ’09, I think we’re going to continue to grow. There was obviously a stunted growth period from 2008-11. This last year, I think, is when the spring flowers began to blossom and people started kind of saying, ‘Yeah, we’re back.’


More Articles

More Than Meets the Eye

Guest Blog
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
Janet Yellen official Federal Reserve portrait-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | CFA

On September 17, the much anticipated Fed decision was delivered and the equity markets haven't liked it.


Back to School

September 2015
Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Oregon is home to an abundance of gritty warehouses reborn as trendy office spaces, as well as crafty hipsters turned entrepreneurs. Does the combination yield an equally bounteous office products sector? Not so much. Occupying the limited desk jockey space are Field Notes, a spinoff of Portland’s Draplin Design Company, and Schuttenworks, known for whittling Apple device stands. For a full complement of keyboard trays, docking stations and mouse pads, check out the GroveMade line, guaranteed to boost the cachet of even the lowliest cubicle drone. 


One Tough Mayor

October 2015
Monday, September 28, 2015

Betty Roppe steers Prineville into the future.


Video: 100 Best Nonprofits to Work For in Oregon 2015

The Latest
Monday, October 05, 2015
100-best-NP-logo-2015-video-thumbVIDEO BY JESSE LARSON

Profiling some of the organizations featured in the 2015 list.


Light Reading

September 2015
Thursday, August 20, 2015

Ask any college student: Textbook prices have skyrocketed out of control. Online education startup Lumen Learning aims to bring them down to earth.


New green wood building product takes off in Oregon

Thursday, September 10, 2015
091115-cltjohnson-thumbBY KIM MOORE

Oregon is set to become a hub of a new type of wooden building design as a southern Oregon timber company becomes the first certified manufacturer of a high-tech wood product, known as cross-laminated timber, or CLT.


Summer of acquisition

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02