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James Rees

President, ICCA

James has 25 years’ experience in event organisation and major venue management. He began as a conference organiser for UK-based Water Research Centre organising national and international events then made a move into venue management, joining Wembley Stadium Ltd as an event manager across Wembley’s Stadium, Arena and Conference & Exhibition Centre venues, managing international conferences and exhibitions, concerts for artists such as Madonna and Michael Jackson and also the FA Cup. After 3 years he moved into a commercial role, focusing on the exhibition and conference side of the business.

Subsequent roles included London Arena as Sales & Marketing Director then Hilton International as Director of Hilton Direct. He is now responsible for the Sales & Marketing Strategy for the Conference & Events Division of ExCeL London which has become globally recognised in the congress and convention industry.

As a venue owned by Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), he is also responsible for helping to promote ADNEC to international event planners to host their events in the Middle East region.

History on the ICCA Board of Directors:

Co-Chair of the Sector Venues

  • Elected: 2012
  • Re-elected: 2014
  • Re-elected: 2016

ICCA President

- Elected: 2018

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