Meet Beth Koenig, Pennsylvania's Wonder Woman

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At 4 a.m., most people are lying peacefully in bed with at least a couple of hours left to snooze. At 4 a.m., Beth Koenig, president at Brass Tacks Events PHL, has already started her day and is up working and sending emails. She sleeps only about five hours a night, leaves for work at 6 a.m., comes home and then gets back to even more work. 

“I have an extra pack of toothpicks to hold my eyelids up most of the day, but it all works out in the long run,” she says. “The busier I am, and the more stressed I am, the better I do in business.”

Koenig spent 17 years in catering before leaving to take a breather in 2016. Turns out that break was short lived— she opened her wedding and event company just a few months after stepping away from her job.

“I took a sabbatical from catering because I worked all of the time,” she says. “Now, I’m kind of right back into it.”

As if running a less-than-one-year-old company wasn’t enough, Koenig also took on the position of director of events for the Schulson Collective restaurant group in February 2017 and is the presidentelect of ILEA, an organization she credits for helping grow her professional career.

With so many responsibilities and plates in the air, it’s clear that Koenig enjoys what she’s doing—you don’t spend 15-plus hours a day doing something you hate. She’s been in the industry since high school, having worked for her local country club, then later majored in hotel restaurant management at Penn State. It’s almost as though meeting and event planning is in her blood. If anything, it’s definitely a part of her personality. 

“I’m very type A and I like organization, so I thrive on planning events for people and keeping them organized,” she says. “Every day brings new challenges, and when you overcome those challenges, you feel good about yourself.” 

The Pennsylvania Meetings + Events second annual Best of 2017 readers’ choice awards were held at The Fuge in Warminster on Oct. 4. The event was attended by 85 industry insiders who anxiously awaited the announcement of each category’s winners, selected online by the readers of the magazine. The Fuge, home to the centrifuge where the astronauts trained to adjust to the G-force of the rockets, played up its otherworldly theme with blue-and-white lighting and space-themed accents, including a bar tucked inside the base of the centrifuge.

 

Mark Ryan makes is mark and takes the lead at Robert Ryan Catering and Design.

 

Philadelphia's Festival O presents a new take on an old saw about how you get to Carnegie Hall (practice, practice, practice), but in this case, it’s plan, plan, plan. “We started planning for this four years ago,” says Frank Luzi, vice president of communications for Opera Philadelphia.