John Patronski Headshot


John “Jack” Patronski

Inducted in 2016

Shaping the Industry

Jack is a member of the GES Senior Leadership Group.  With over 35 years of experience in the exhibition and events industry, he has worked with clients with a focus on strategic planning, continuous service improvement and operations to include many “Top 200” Trade Shows. His experience includes executive management in sales and operations, business development, marketing, facility operations, account management, acquisitions and integration plans. He is an incredible leader and actively keeps all groups he leads on task and with a clear focus. He is passionate about the industry and everything he does is for the greater good.

Single Most Important Contribution

Jack’s most important contribution to our industry is his ability to make us “care and contribute” beyond our narrow spheres. He has led GES in funding multiple causes, rallied organizations around these causes and enabled our industry to demonstrate to the communities in which we meet, the impact we can and do make. Since the inception of Jack’s and GES’s charitable funding endeavors, over a million dollars has been donated to enhance lives and enrich the perception of our industry. 

Expansive Influence

Jack has been recognized for his leadership by IAEE, the PCMA Education Foundation, CEIR and the Exhibition Service Contractors Association. He was recently honored with the “Chicagoland Four Star Award”, in the category of Best Industry Advocate at Chicago Meetings Mean Business 2015 North American Meetings Industry Day. Throughout his career, Jack has been invited to participate as a speaker and panelists for various organizations to include CESSE, AMPROFEC, ASAE, PCMA, IAEE, CEMA, and ESCA and has been a contributor to industry publications. As an active member of PCMA, IAEE, ASAE, ESCA and CIER, Jack has lent countless volunteer hours to various industry boards to advance the industry. There is no assignment too big or too small for Jack, he takes them all on with pride and sees them through to completion.

Distinguished Achievements of Last Value

Jack in a “word” is a “connector” of people in our industry.  He is passionate about the hospitality community and about assisting others in building relationships. Jack is committed to our industry, as evidenced by the multiple volunteer leadership roles he has taken on. His career is one of ever evolving responsibilities with ample proof of his ability to solve problems and work collaboratively with his fellow industry leaders to advance common causes. Jack has work for GES since 1993. Throughout his tenure, the organization has experienced significant growth, both organically and through acquisition.  Through Jack’s endeavors, each growth step GES has taken has been well communicated and seamlessly brought to market. 

Outstanding Service to Industry Organizations

Jack has been an outstanding contributor beyond his own organization particularly holding positions on boards, councils, advisor groups and panels. Some of these contribitions have been PCMA Education Foundation Trustee, President of the Northern Illinois University Alumni Association, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce Board of Director, CEIR Fundraising Council Member 2013, MPEA (McCormick Place) Labor Management Council Member, Chairman of the Exhibition Industry Foundation, Chairman of the Board, Chairman of Choose Chicago (formerly CCTB) Chairman of the Board, Chairman of PCMA Education Foundation Chairman of the Board, PCMA Board of Director, and much more. 

Contributions to Society

Most notably, Jack is a tremendous supporter of local charities – he always seeks to give back to the destinations where industry events are held. He aligns with causes where his dollars will make the most impact – he does his due diligence in researching each charity before he decides to make the gift. Further to that Jack draws in attendees to the cause by inviting beneficiaries to share their stories. These causes are near and dear to his heart and he is passionate about giving back and making an impact through meetings.