• The STM Drifter Energy Travel Backpack is perfect for meeting pros on the road

    FROM THE Spring 2016 ISSUE

Thanks to this new energy-saving travel backpack, you’ll never have to worry about your phone or tablet running out of juice again. The built-in charger gives travelers an extra 15 to 20 hours of talk time, and it’s powered by Smart Power, so your backpack can simultaneously recharge its battery and your electronics, while also emitting minimal heat to protect items in the bag.

According to Adam Ziegelman, vice president of marketing, the bag is also very fashionable, which adds “a secondary protection to disguise the fact that you’re carrying thousands of dollars worth of equipment.”

He also adds that the company’s clients are more of a fan base due to the extreme thoughtfulness of the design. “Once you’re an owner of one of these bags, it’s really a discovery moment when you’re like, ‘Wow—this company really thought of everything.’” Bags also come in messenger styles.

In 2020, Houston First Corp. (HFC) reported that the city was slated to host 252 meetings and 611,000 room nights. By March 14, the Bayou City had already hosted 115 conventions and 137,400 room nights. Then the pandemic hit, and meetings and events across the country came to a screeching halt.

We asked Michael Heckman, acting president and CEO of Houston First Corp. (HFC) how the health crisis has influenced the organization’s business model moving forward.


Chances are, you won’t know you’re living through history until it’s too late. It’s already happening. A chain reaction has been set in motion and the ground has begun to slide beneath your feet.

This past year has been a whirlwind to say the least. As a global pandemic sent the world reeling, planners were left grasping for footholds as the event industry was brought to a standstill, and many of the most fundamental elements of live meetings and events were cast in a new light.


Great lighting is key. Smart décor is a must. But the mood of any gala, auction or awards ceremony lies largely on the shoulders of its master of ceremonies. Who you choose to represent your cause or organization on stage can be the difference between an event that is “ho-hum” or “electrifying.”

Texas Meetings + Events reached out to three of Texas’s favorite emcees. They shared with us how they got where they are—and what they’re doing now—along with some sage advice.