December 2015

Highlights from the 2015 Annual International Conference

Glancing in the conference rearview mirror, let’s take a quick look back at AAMVA’s 82nd Annual International Conference (AIC). Held in the beautiful state capital city of Des Moines, Iowa, Midwestern charm and perfect weather surrounded the Iowa Events Center this past August 25–27.

Hosted by AAMVA’s immediate past Chair of the Board Mark Lowe and the Iowa Department of Transportation, the AIC provided attendees with a combination of hot-button sessions and fun events. From timely issues such as mobile driver’s licenses and facial recognition technology, to new topics like fighting human trafficking and staff recruitment and retention, conference goers took advantage of a wide variety of informative sessions. Among this year’s presenters was National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Administrator Mark Rosekind, who discussed the U.S. Department of Transportation’s safety agenda and the importance of AAMVA members’ efforts in reducing highway fatalities.

Along with educational meetings and concurrent sessions, conference attendees also experienced some wholesome, Iowa-themed entertainment. During the “Night at the State Fair,” attendees took to the dunk tanks to see their favorite AAMVA members take a splash. The night was capped off with a corn-on-the-cob eating contest, where willing participants attempted to eat 12 ears of corn within eight minutes. Viewers of the event watched in awe and were overheard asking, “Is this a typical meal in Iowa?” All in good fun and in the name of charity, the event raised over $10,000 for Special Olympics Iowa.

Conference festivities wrapped up with a sock-hop themed closing banquet. Attendees donned their best ’50s style poodle skirts, white tees and leather jackets, while a massive hand-jive contest overtook the dance floor.

NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind takes questions from conference attendees.
Opening ceremonies of the 82nd Annual International Conference begin.
Martha Irwin Award winners Kim Snook and retired Lt. Col. Jack Miniard accept their awards alongside AAMVA President and CEO Anne Ferro and immediate past Chair of the Board Mark Lowe.
Presented this year to Utah’s Brad Simpson, the Chair’s Award of Excellence is a special honor given to an individual or organization whose contributions and service have left a lasting impression on the AAMVA community.
Corn-on-the-cob eating contest champion Tim Benz celebrates his well-deserved victory.
Ladies of the Iowa DOT take time to show off their sock-hop poodle skirts.

View more photos from the 2015 AIC on AAMVA's Flickr page.