Q: What is ILEA?


A: ILEA stands for the International Live Events Association. The IInternational Live Events Association (ILEA) is the premier society for Event Professionals, connecting you to Seattle event planner networking opportunities locally and beyond. Your membership in ILEA also allows you to build relationships with other professionals in Seattle and within the special events industry. ILEA Seattle is a 100% volunteer run organization.


Q: What is the SEARCH Foundation?

A: Founded in 1997, the SEARCH Foundation supports special event industry professionals in times of crisis through fundraising, volunteer services and donations. To learn more about the foundation, click here.


Q: If I join the Seattle Chapter am I also a member of the International Chapter?

A: Yes, when you join a local chapter, you also become a member of the international organization.


Q: When does my membership expire?

A: No matter when you join ILEA throughout the year (July-April); your membership will expire on June 30th. However, if you join in May or June your membership will not expire until the following calendar year.


Q: How much does membership cost?

A: Annual ILEA membership fees are $499 for corporate or individual; $399 for any additional corporate member; or $399 for non-profit ($50 application fee is included in this cost). Student memberships are $50 and require volunteer service to the chapter and approval from a university representative. ILEA also holds two international membership drives each year in December and May. These membership drives offer additional incentives for joining ILEA.


Q: Does ILEA accept student members?

A: Student memberships are $50 per year and can be held for a maximum of two years (additional years beyond two will be addressed by ILEA International and the schools’ Program Coordinator). Student members must be enrolled as a part or full-time student in a recognized certificate or degree program. Student members are encouraged to get involved with the chapter by volunteering ten (10) hours to the ILEA Seattle chapter per year, helping with chapter meetings and event registration, mailings, and other chapter business such as coordinating chapter community service and special projects.However, student members do not receive full ILEA member privileges. Student members are not eligible to have a listing in the ILEA Membership book or on the ILEA Web sites; they do not qualify for Member Discounts; nor can they vote on chapter business or hold an office in ILEA. In addition, student members are not be permitted to use the ILEA logo on business cards or any promotional material.


Q: How do I join ILEA?

A: The easiest and fastest way to join ILEA is online at www.ILEAHub.com. Your membership will be immediately activated and will not expire until June 30, of the following year. If you prefer to pay by check, your membership may not be activated for 6-8 weeks; due to ILEA Headquarters check processing procedures.


Q: Who can/should join ILEA?

A: ILEA Membership brings together professionals from a variety of special event disciplines including caterers, meeting planners, decorators, event planners, audio-visual technicians, party and convention coordinators, entertainers, educators, journalists, photographers, hotel sales managers and many more professional disciplines.


Q: What are the benefits of membership?

A: The association encourages professional development and certification and presents countless opportunities for networking and connecting with industry resources. For a complete list of member benefits refer to the member benefits sheet.


Q: When and where are the ILEA Seattle Chapter Educational meetings held?

A: ILEA Seattle Chapter Educational Meetings are usually held on the 3rd Wednesday of the month. Locations, times, and meeting topics can be found on our Event & Education page.  ILEA meeting notices are sent via our Constant Contact Email List.


Q: Is there a charge to attend monthly meetings?

A: Yes, there is a charge to both members and non-members to attend monthly educational meetings: $35 for members, $55 for non-members, and $25 for students.  The quarterly Lunch 'n Learn events are $10 and are open to ILEA Seattle members only.


Q: Does ILEA Seattle accept credit card payments for meetings and events?

A: Yes, you may pay for ILEA meetings online through the registration portal.


Q: What type of educational opportunities does ILEA offer to members?

A: ILEA offers comprehensive, year-round, local and international educational experiences for professionals in the special events industry such as ILEA Live: A Conference for Professional Development. ILEA Live is a continuing education conference for the special events industry where attendees have the opportunity to improve their professional skills and knowledge. The traveling conference is held annually in August. Information and registration forms are mailed to members and are also made available online at www.ILEAHub.com. In addition, ILEA has a “Cooperative Alliance” with Special Events Magazine which produces The Special Event, an annual industry Tradeshow and Conference for Event Professionals in the United States.


Q: Does ILEA offer any type of certification?

A: Yes, the Certified Special Events Professional or CSEP designation. The CSEP designation is the hallmark of professional achievement in the special events industry. It is earned through education, performance, experience, and service to the industry, and reflects a commitment to professional conduct and ethics. The CSEP designation is awarded by the International Live Events Association (ILEA) and its Certification Committee. ILEA is the only international umbrella organization representing professionals in all disciplines of the special events industry. Education and a commitment to professionalism are cornerstones of ILEA. For more information click here.


Q: I would like to log-in to my ILEA account at  www.ileahub.com and make changes to my personal information. How can I do that; and what is my password?

A: If you are a new member or have never logged into the International Web site, you will use the membership number listed on your ILEA ID; and your password is welcome. However, once you change your password after your first log-in; you will need to retain it for your reference and future entry to the site.


Q: What if I can’t make it to a monthly meeting, can I send someone from my company in my place at the member rate?

A: Yes. If you are unable to attend a monthly meeting but would like to send a representative from your company to take your place, they are able to attend at the $35 member rate. However, if you attend along with someone else from your company that is not a member; you would pay the $35 member rate and the additional person would pay a fee of $55.


Q: Why should I serve on the board or join a committee?

NETWORKING: Gain closer relationships with members of the chapter.

EDUCATION: Attending special leadership retreats, educational parts of the chapter meetings, and be considered for scholarship opportunities.

CHAPTER GROWTH: Recruiting new members, giving input to the chapter for new ideas and improvement, and working with a board.

PERSONAL GROWTH: Gain personal and business relationships and personal achievement to help further your career.

VOLUNTEERING: Getting more involved in the community outside the special events industry.

EXPAND HORIZONS: ILEA allows you to travel the globe, become more cultured and meet other individuals in the industry all over the country.

PROFESSIONAL GROWTH: Work alongside your peers, gain new ideas.

GIVING BACK: What you get our of ILEA is what you put in!

KNOWLEDGE: Learning more about the industry such as new ideas, trends etc

HAVING FUN!!: The main goal for ILEA is for our members is to have fun while networking, learning, and serving as a leader!


Q: How do I promote my business with ILEA?


  • NETWORK – Mingle before and after the monthly chapter meetings, come to the various Lunch 'n Learn events – these are smaller groups with 10-20 event professionals discussing a selected topic – another great way to get to know people in an more intimate environment.

  • JOIN A COMMITTEE – Contribute a few volunteer hours per month to the chapter working with others who may become customers, refer you to new business or help you land your next job.

  • JOIN THE CHAPTER LEADERSHIP – Become a member of the ILEA Seattle Board to increase your contacts and strengthen new relationships.

  • SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES – Provide venue space, catering, event services, products or materials to showcase your company’s capabilities.

  • RAFFLE AND AUCTION GIFTS – Donations are needed for raffles at chapter meetings and the annual chapter fundraiser; and are recognized during the meeting and in the chapter newsletter

  • ADVERTISE – Advertise your business’ products and services in ILEA Seattle chapter.

  • AWARDS – Participate and submit your work for a local, state or international award.  Our local chapter hosts the Emerald City Applause Awards (ECAA).  On an international level – submit your work for an Esprit Award.


Q: How do I get the most out of ILEA?


  • Go to meetings

  • Network

  • Volunteer

  • Join a committee

  • Attend Regional/or national conferences


Q: What are my member benefits outside of ILEA?


  • Staples business advantage discounts

  • FedEx/Kinkos Discount card

  • Alamo discount

  • DHL/Airborne Express Shipping Discount

  • Shaker Group inc Trade show shipping discount, and MORE