ILA Marketing Forum Mini-Marketing Conference

Navigating Through These Challenging Times

2024 ILA Marketing Forum Mini-Marketing Conference

Friday, April 26, 2024, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Friday, May 17, 2024, 11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Online (Zoom)

The ILA Marketing Forum is excited to announce the return of its Mini-Marketing Conference, scheduled to take place virtually over two days on April 26 and May 17, 2024.

The conference's theme, "Navigating Through These Challenging Times," will be highlighted by an engaging presentation featuring keynote speakers Michelle Mekky and David Viggiano from Mekky Media Relations bringing their expertise to the forefront with a media training session.

In addition, Adora Namigadde, WBEZ Chicago Metro Reporter and host of the morning episodes of the station's daily podcast "The Rundown," will provide insights into establishing and maintaining positive relationships with local media.

More details will be posted soon, so please check back. Registration for both days of the conference closes on Friday, April 19. If you have any questions about the conference, please contact Tamara Jenkins at tjenkins@ila.org


Registration Rates 

Mini Conference Registration Single Session Both Sessions
ILA Personal & Institutional Members $65 $80
Illinois Non-Members $75 $90
Out-of-State Registration* $100 $150

* Please note that if you are out-of-state and you do not register at the appropriate rate, your registration will be adjusted and an invoice will be sent for any differentce in rates. 

If you have any questions about registration, please email ila@ila.org

Register to attend



Statement of Appropriate Conduct 
All participants are expected to observe the rules and behaviors described in the Statement of Appropriate Conduct in all conference venues.

Cancellation Policy - Cancellations must be received in writing before April 19, 2024. Please e-mail your cancellation request to ila@ila.org. Cancellations received before April 19 will receive a refund and are subject to $10 processing fee. No refunds will be given for cancellations received after April 22, 2024.


Schedule coming soon!


About the Speakers

Michelle Mekky is a veteran, award-winning broadcast journalist and public relations executive. She is founder and president of Mekky Media Relations, Inc., a boutique PR agency with clients in Chicago and coast to coast that range from startups to industry leaders. Michelle started her career as a senior producer for Fox-TV in Chicago, then transitioned to PR and marketing, working at top agencies before starting her own company in 2016. Mekky Media strategically partners with organizations that represent a broad range of verticals – including nonprofits, technology, healthcare, restaurants, retail, fitness, financial and B2B. Michelle and her team of nearly 20 PR professionals help clients tell their stories to new audiences and fuel their growth, through services such as PR strategy, media relations, media training, social media strategy, integrated digital and PR programs, and personal branding.

Michelle and Mekky Media have been widely recognized for their success, with national honors like Gold and Silver Stevie Awards in 2018, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023. The agency also was named to Expertise PR’s list of Best Chicago PR Firms and received a PR News Top 100 Agency Elite Award and several Publicity Club of Chicago Gold/Silver Trumpet Awards, to name just a few of the many honors in the agency’s first seven years. Michelle was named PRSA Chicago Skyline Awards 2023 Professional of the Year, Niles West High School’s 2022 Distinguished Alum, 2021 Ragan and PR Daily Communicator of the Year, a 2020 PR News Top Women in PR Honoree and a 2019 Crain’s Chicago Business Notable Entrepreneur. She also won the 2023 Daily Herald Entrepreneurial Excellence Award and a 2018 Bronze Stevie Award for Women in Business, in the Entrepreneur of the Year category.

Michelle is part of the prestigious International Public Relations Network (IPRN), Forbes Agency Council and Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). She is a Forbes blogger and motivational speaker, sharing about leadership, her journey as an entrepreneur and more. Michelle is a member of the Strategic Advancement Committee for Start Early, a nonprofit that helps close the opportunity gap by advancing early learning and care for children. She graduated from Northwestern University, with Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from the renowned Medill School of Journalism.


David Viggiano is media relations specialist who brings over 15 years of experience as a broadcast journalist to his role at Mekky Media Relations. David’s knowledge of working with journalists and understanding their needs is key to developing relationships with members of the press to help develop feature stories and guide his clients to becoming go-to experts in their field.

Before joining Mekky Media Relations, David was the media relations director at O’Malley Hansen Communications and Alpaytac PR and was a founding partner at MediaPros 24/7. David spent many years as a broadcast journalist, television personality, producer, actor and director. He was the entertainment and feature reporter at WFLD-TV, Fox 32 in Chicago for more than a decade. During his tenure at Fox, David interviewed hundreds of celebrities, traveled the world covering movie premieres, anchored a daily, live entertainment segment, and hosted the regularly featured segments, “Fox in the City” and “Man About Town.”

David holds an MFA in Acting and Directing from Northern Illinois University in Dekalb and a B.A. in Theatre Arts from the Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, Virginia. He appeared in numerous stage productions including being an original cast member of the Chicago production of “Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding,” as well as appearing in dozens of commercials, print ads and corporate videos. He was a founding member and director of Brewhaha Comedy Troupe and artistic director of the Toucan Players, a traveling children’s theatre company, and toured the U.S. with the National Theatre for Children.


Adora Namigadde is a metro reporter and host of the morning episodes of The Rundown for WBEZ, Chicago's NPR station. 

She loves reporting on the intersection of arts, culture and belief. After taking a job in Chicago, she was surprised to find libraries at the forefront of cultural and political controversy. She soon learned libraries and reading have long been battlegrounds for the freedom of speech and spread of information.

As the daughter of two professors, Namigadde is passionate about learning and grew up doing all sorts of things at her local library. From summer reading challenges to studying to chess tournaments, she is grateful for all the free education and play she got from her library. Namigadde is participating in this conference because she wants future generations to be able to access the same swath of resources. 

Namigadde studied journalism at Wayne State University in Detroit. Before working at WBEZ, she reported for the public radio station in Columbus, Ohio and a CBS affiliate in Cadillac, Michigan.
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