SPECS SHOW 2018
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MARCH 18-20, 2018 • GAYLORD TEXAN, DALLAS

Full Agenda

SPECS 2018 PROGRAM


Sunday

8:00am-6:00pm

SPECS/2018 Registration Desk Open
Grapevine Ballroom C Foyer


10:00AM-12:00PM   |   1:00-2:30PM   |   4:30-6:00PM

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SPECS App Station
Grapevine Ballroom C Foyer
Visit the SPECS App Station for downloading instructions and quick tutorials on features and benefits. Sponsored by Atlas Sign Industries.


1:00-2:00pm

Supplier Welcome Luncheon and Orientation Panel Discussion
►Yellow Rose Ballroom

The annual luncheon, which is a gathering of SPECS exhibiting companies, is augmented this year by an Orientation Panel Discussion, designed to help exhibitors — particularly new participants — maximize their SPECS experience.  Moderated by Gary Esposito, SPECS chairman and Chain Store Age group publisher, the panel includes:  Robin Baskin Ladner, VP of sales, Global Facility Management & Construction; Jim Gorman, senior strategic account manager – national accounts, Benjamin Moore; and Warren Zysman, president, All-Rite Construction; as well as veteran SPECS retailer attendee Aaron Ancello, VP and regional facilities lead, TD Bank. The luncheon begins at 1:00, and the panel discussion will start at about 1:40pm.
Who should attend: SPECS 2018 exhibiting companies


3:00-3:30pM

Retailer Orientation Panel Discussion
Austin 4-6
New at SPECS this year is the Retailer Orientation Panel Discussion, designed to help retailers — particularly new attendees or those who haven’t been in a while — maximize their SPECS experience. Moderated by Melissa Murphy, SPECS event attendance manager, the panel includes:  Mike Gordon, senior manager, facilities management, Rent-A-Center; Randy Pannell, VP of construction, Saks Fifth Avenue; and Renee Tobin, strategic sourcing manager, Brookdale Senior Living; as well as veteran SPECS exhibitor and executive advisory board member Craig Hale, associate, HFA. The panel discussion begins at 3:00, and will be followed by the annual Retail-Only Networking Reception at 3:30 in Austin 1-2-3.
Who should attend: SPECS 2018 retailer attendees, whether new or veteran


3:30-4:30PM

Retailer-Only Networking Reception
Austin 1-3
Retailers, come mingle and network with your peers; cocktails served.

Supplier-Only Networking Reception
Longhorn Exhibit Hall B-D
Open to all SPECS/2018 exhibiting companies; cocktails and networking on the menu.


4:45-6:15PM

Solution Center Open
Longhorn Exhibit Hall B-D


6:30-8:00PM

SPECS/2018 Welcoming Reception
Grapevine Ballroom C-D


Monday

7:00AM-6:00PM

SPECS/2018 Registration Desk Open
Grapevine Ballroom C Foyer


7:30-8:00AM

Breakfast
Grapevine Ballroom C-D


8:00-9:00am

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Keynote Address
►Grapevine Ballroom C-D
He advises millions across the country on how to find business success through his primetime reality series “The Profit” – and at SPECS 2018, active investor, retailer and prolific entrepreneur Marcus Lemonis talks about the role that brick-and-mortar stores play in today’s marketplace, and how to drive growth, elevate the customer experience, and improve business processes.
Marcus Lemonis, CNBC’s “The Profit”

 

9:00AM-12:00PM

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SPECS App Station
Grapevine Ballroom C Foyer
Visit the SPECS App Station for downloading instructions and quick tutorials on features and benefits. Sponsored by Atlas Sign Industries.


9:15-10:55AM

Face2Face: Retailer/Exhibitor Information Exchange
Longhorn Exhibit Hall A
Open to retailers that pre-registered for Face2Face and to SPECS/2018 exhibitors


9:15-10:30am

Main Stage
Creating Culture and Building a Team
►Grapevine 5
Every company faces change; how you deal with it can make or break you in your role as a leader.  Presented by former EVP and President of North America Buffalo Wild Wings, Judith Shoulak, and her millennial daughter/communication specialist Sarah Shoulak, this presentation provides a multi-generational approach to building corporate culture, fostering teamwork, enhancing employee engagement, and learning to innovate with jeopardizing the integrity of your brand.
Who Should Attend: All titles and attendee categories, except those participating in Monday morning's Face2Face meetings.     


10:30-11:00AM

 Sponsored by

Networking Break
Grapevine 4 Foyer
Coffee and beverages (served from 9:00-11:00) sponsored by Benjamin Moore


11:00AM-2:00PM

Solution Center Open
Longhorn Exhibitor Hall B-D
Lunch served 12:00-1:00


2:00-4:15PM

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Sponsored Refreshment Break
Outside Breakout Session rooms
Coffee and beverage service sponsored by Benjamin Moore


2:10-3:00pm

Big Ideas:
TreeHouse: The Future of Energy is Here
►Austin 4-6  |  CEU Approved
Eco-friendly home improvement newcomer TreeHouse has done what no veteran retailer yet has – created the world’s first energy-positive big-box store. What’s next for this forward-thinking company? Hear from its VP of Creative & Design Aaron Moulton as well as the Head of Store Design & Construction Jenny LaBarge about how TreeHouse created a hub for smart, thoughtful building, and find out what the brand has on the boards for the future.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, contractors, consultants and vendors.

Personal Growth & Talent:
Leadership Workshop: How to Navigate Conflict
►Grapevine A  |  CEU Approved
Even All-Star teams have conflict.  And being an effective leader means learning to practice the art of understanding toward resolving that conflict. Recently retired EVP and President of North America Buffalo Wild Wings, Judith Shoulak, and her millennial daughter/communication specialist Sarah Shoulak show session attendees how to identify and navigate conflicts in a variety of situations — presented in an engaging and interactive workshop format.
Who Should Attend: All titles, including store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, development, real estate, marketing, contractors, consultants and vendors.   

Nuts and Bolts: 
Collaboration – Breaking Down Silos by Building Up Your Team
►Grapevine 1-3  |  CEU Approved
Collaboration is what drives true success, so why are so few of us collaborating? Many job functions are involved with designing, building, operating, and maintaining brick and mortar stores. Listen in as leading retail companies discuss how early collaboration between Real Estate, Construction, Design, Facilities Management and Store Operations helps to identify best practices, drive long-term financial benefits and avoid pitfalls down the road. Moderators:  Susan Hecht, VP, Solutions Development, Sales, SMS Assist, and Lisa Schwartz, president, ProCoat, both members of the SPECS Advisory Board. Panelists include E. Jane Williams, VP of Store Design & Construction Services, JCPenney, Joshua Witte, director of store operations, brand maintenance and repair, Ross Stores, and Jennifer Grieser, senior store and corporate facilities manager, Tuesday Morning.
Who Should Attend: All involved in the process from designing to maintaining, and anywhere in between.

Product Bytes: 
Virtual Reality – Impact on Construction, Remodels, Facilities Management
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved
This rapid-fire session – at 25 minutes – provides quick hits on VR technology that’s being used in the retail space, including tips for use in construction, remodels and facilities management. Presented by Joel Pennington, AR and VR Strategy Development.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, operations, development, real estate, contractors and consultants
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Lighting Trends
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved
This session offers up a 25-minute highlights-reel of the latest in lighting trends and technology, presented by Amy Laughead-Riese, president and principal lighting designer of 37 Volts Lighting Studio and Chairperson of the Illuminating Engineering Society’s Retail Lighting Committee.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, contractors, consultants and vendors.


3:10-4:00PM

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Big Ideas: 
Re-Imagined Retail:  Beyond the Box
►Austin 4-6  |  CEU Approved
As Wal-Mart rolls out its next-generation of superstores, it has fully reimagined its space – and has improved the shopping experience and flow. The retailer discusses the components and perspectives of the next-gen executions, including fixturing, technology, sales and merchandising, shopping efficiencies, and how e-commerce and the app tie it all together. This session, presented by Trent Miller, Senior Director, Pickup Assortment, Walmart Services, shows that the world’s largest retailer is also one of the most forward-thinking and progressive.
Who Should Attend: All titles, especially those who want a peek at how Wal-Mart approaches the next level of retailing.

Personal Growth & Talent: 
The CEO of Tomorrow: What You Need to Know
►Grapevine A
Is tomorrow’s chief executive a CIO, a CMO, a CFO or a merchant? One thing is for certain, no longer can you count on a merchandising orientation at the helm. And, as the CEO definition changes, what is the trickle-down effect on our industry? This session is led by Korn Ferry Hay Group, one of the nation's leading talent strategy and consulting firms: Craig Rowley, senior client partner, and Lilly Lin, PH.D., senior principal.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, operations, procurement, development, real estate, marketing, contractors, consultants and vendors.

Nuts and Bolts:
Small-Format Retail: Impact on Design, Construction and Facilities
►Grapevine 1-3  |  CEU Approved
Smaller footprints affect design and construction, as well as facilities management. A panel of retailers discusses the challenge of doing business in a smaller footprint, miniaturized options such as pop-ups, the impact on store opening costs, ways to save operating costs, how to increase efficiencies in layouts for stock replenishment, storage, maintenance and more. Moderated by Jason Woods, senior manager construction for Tesla, with panelists Sara Craven, senior manager of development and construction for Jamba Juice, Jeff Fisher, adviser to the CEO, Bata Brands SA, and Kevin Tierney, VP Retail, Tarkett.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, operations, development, real estate, contractors and consultants.

Product Bytes: 
Risky Business: Keeping Stores Safe and Secure
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved  
This rapid-fire session – at 25 minutes – provides quick hits on security and risk-reduction tools and solutions, such as barricades and bollards, glazed storefronts, and more. The panel features Christie King, AIA, NCARB, senior architect, proto and new formats, Wal-Mart Stores; and Patrick McEvoy, senior director of asset protection, Hudson’s Bay Co.
Moderator is Rob Reiter, co-founder, Storefront Safety Council.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, asset management, operations, procurement, development, marketing, contractors and consultants
.

Energy Idea Exchange
►Ft. Worth 5-7   |  CEU Approved
This session, led by Holly Carr, energy technology program specialist for the U.S. Dept. of Energy, offers up a 25-minute look at energy technology, practices and solutions that are reducing cost and raising efficiencies.
Who Should Attend: All titles, especially those that will effect change or be affected by the change in energy technology and solutions.


4:10-5:00pm

Big Ideas:  
Shopping Venues of Tomorrow
►Austin 4-6  |  CEU Approved  
A panel of shopping center executives, moderated by Lou Allevato, AIA, principal, HFA, discusses the big ideas for the future of the shopping center, including urban infill, how to transform dark spaces, tenant recruitment, landlord-tenant partnerships and opportunities, and how tomorrow’s center will appeal to the generational shoppers. What’s in it for retailers? Panelists include Yaromir Steiner, CEO, Steiner + Associates, Carl Tash, chief strategy officer, Starwood Retail Partners, Mike Conway, VP of national accounts and retailer partnerships, Phillips Edison & Co., and Jeff Johnson, executive VP of development, Trademark Property Co
Who Should Attend: All titles, including store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, development, real estate, contractors, consultants and vendors
.

Personal Growth & Talent: 
Women at the Top: Breaking Barriers
►Grapevine A  |  CEU Approved 
A panel of female retail executives representing the c-suite, construction, real estate, and facilities management segments discusses battles, and triumphs, as they marched their way to the top. Hear from Karen Bird, CIO of Hooters of America, representing the corner office of female retail executives; Melissa Bruce, Regional VP-Midwest, Operations/Development & Construction, Dunkin' Brands, who represents women in construction as well as operations; Valerie Richardson, VP of real estate for The Container Store as well as the incoming chair for the International Council of Shopping Centers, who discusses women who lead retail real estate; and Jennifer Sorrells, senior manager of national retail facilities for T-Mobile, who represents women at the top of facilities management. The panel is moderated by Wendy Whetton, senior facilities project manager for Harbor Freight Tools and an executive member of the SPECS Advisory Board.
Who Should Attend: All titles, not limited to women, will benefit from this session.

Nuts and Bolts: 
Maintaining Dark Stores
►Grapevine 1-3  |  CEU Approved
How do you maintain shuttered buildings? Whether new and yet-to-be occupied, or dark and closed, how do you bring these buildings back to life or mitigate the effects of their closure? This panel explores the management and maintenance procedures, as well as the challenges and opportunities for maintaining dark spaces. Panelists include Nick Hanson, director of construction, Whole Foods Market/365, Casey Fitzpatrick, construction estimator for Wegmans Food Markets, and Dan Sheridan, principal, Hoffman Strategy Group. The panel is moderated by Jerry L. Hoffman, president & owner, Hoffman Strategy Group.   
Who Should Attend: Store construction, facilities management, operations, development, real estate and contractors.

Product Bytes:  
What’s Popping in Pop-Ups
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved
Immersive, experiential retail is the antidote to “rack it and stack it” merchandising. Pop-ups are leading the way for brand recognition, product launch and specialty merchandise sales in malls, on streets, at events and on tour. The session focuses on takeover of “dark” spaces, street-front/neighborhood locations and non-traditional retail venues such as residences. We’ll cover the WHY, the WHAT’S NOT WORKING, and the WHAT’S GETTING TRACTION in the world of temporary, event-focused and seasonal retail.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, operations, development, real estate, marketing, contractors and consultants.


5:15-6:30PM

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Women in Retail Networking Reception
Grapevine 5
All women registered for SPECS - whether retailer, exhibitor or consultant - are invited to attend! Wine, cheese and full bar. Sponsored by Egan Sign


6:30-8:00PM

SPECS/2018 Evening Reception
Grapevine Ballroom C-D


Tuesday—

7:00AM-6:00PM

SPECS/2018 Registration Desk Open
Grapevine Ballroom C Foyer


7:30-8:00AM

Breakfast Served
Grapevine Ballroom C-D


7:30-8:30AM

Peer Roundtable Discussions: "Tuesday Table Topics"
Grapevine Ballroom C-D
Limited to 15 tables of 10; first-come, first served; 15 moderated topics to discuss. Breakfast served first 30 minutes.


8:30-11:30AM

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SPECS App Station
Grapevine Ballroom C Foyer
Visit the SPECS App Station for downloading instructions and quick tutorials on features and benefits. Sponsored by Atlas Sign Industries.


8:30-8:45AM

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Breakout Retailers Awards presentation
Grapevine Ballroom C-D
Sponsored by Heritage Fire


8:45-9:30am

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Keynote Address
►Grapevine Ballroom C-D  
Considered one of the world’s leading futurists on global trends and innovation, Daniel Burrus reliably predicts both hard trends (what will happen) and soft trends (what might happen) with uncanny success. What do Amazon, Bonobos, Warby Parker, and a host of other e-commerce brands that are opening physical stores know that most retailers don’t? The good old days of retail are AHEAD of us.
Daniel Burrus, Futurist

 

9:45-11:25AM

Face2Face: Retailer/Exhibitor Information Exchange
Longhorn Exhibit Hall A
Open to retailers that pre-registered for Face2Face and to SPECS/2018 exhibitors


9:45-11:00am

Main Stage
Brick-and-Mortar Myth Busters: The Power of Physical Retail
►Grapevine 5  |  CEU Approved   
We dispel retail’s biggest myth – that brick-and-mortar stores are dying — with real research and insights that support the ongoing strength of physical retail. Are there challenges now and in the future? Certainly. But this session provides real-time tips to demonstrate how retailers can and should adapt their prototypes and experiences for maximum appeal, value and longevity. Presented by Neil Stern, senior partner, McMillan Doolittle global retail consultancy
Who Should Attend: All titles and attendee categories, except those participating in Tuesday morning's Face2Face meetings.


11:00-11:30AM

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Networking Break
Grapevine 4 Foyer
Coffee and beverages (served from 9:30-11:30) sponsored by Benjamin Moore


11:30AM-2:00PM

Solution Center Open
Longhorn Exhibit Hall B-D
Lunch served 12:00-1:00


2:00-4:15PM

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Sponsored Refreshment Break
Outside Breakout Session rooms
Coffee and beverage service sponsored by Benjamin Moore


2:10-3:00pm

What’s Trending: 
Breakout Retailers Award-Winners
►Austin 4-6  
Chain Store Age’s Breakout Retailers award-winners share their secrets for success. Moderated by Marianne Wilson, editor-in-chief, Chain Store Age. This year's award winners are: Indochino, Punch Bowl Social, Shinola, sweetgreen, and UNTUCKit. Accepting the awards on behalf of the winning retailers are:
Janet Jensen, VP of experience, Indochino
Robert Thompson, CEO, Punch Bowl Social
Chris Delusky, head of store development, Shinola
Eslam Khalil, director of store design and construction, sweetgreen
Brent Paulsen, managing director and head of retail, UNTUCKit
Who Should Attend: All titles, including store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, development, real estate, marketing, contractors, consultants and vendors.

Personal Growth & Talent: 
The Changing Faces of Facilities Management
►Grapevine A  |  CEU Approved  
The face (literally) of Facilities Management is changing, as the average FM worker ages out and will ultimately need to be replaced by a younger, more diverse pool of successors. And, because the FM job is no longer about just maintaining buildings, tomorrow’s facilities executives will need to know how to work collaboratively to create better, smarter store environments. Moderated by Shawn Clancy, senior director, property development/retail facilities for Sephora, the panel features Maria Butters, director of facility services, Publix Super MarketsJennifer Sorrells, senior manager, national retail facilities, T-Mobile; Bracky Cooper, maintenance operations manager for AutoZone, and Aaron Ancello, VP, regional facilities lead, TD Bank.
Who Should Attend: Facilities management, facilities vendors, construction, contractors and consultants.

Retail Design: 
Retail and the ADA: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
►Grapevine 1-3  |  CEU Approved
ADA expert Brad Gaskins, AIA, CASp, of The McIntosh Group shares real-life examples of ADA compliance issues and resolutions and discusses how rising lawsuits are affecting retailers. This presentation, moderated by ADA architect, accessibility consultant and design specialist, and ADA compliance expert Gaskins, will be an open discussion format where all attendees are encouraged to participate.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, operations, procurement, contractors, consultants and vendors.

Top 10: 
Top 10 Remodel Trends
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved
Focusing on what retailers do most – remodel stores – this session counts down the top 10 trends in remodeling, from pre-fab solutions to bathroom-in-a-box, cashwrap set-and-go, refinishing versus replacement options, and more. Moderated by Keith Johnson, director of store design, Dollar Tree & Family Dollar Stores Inc. Panelists include Ben Longmire, director of construction special projects for RaceTrac Petroleum, Matthew Mangold, senior director – retail program management team for Walgreens, Joe Collins, senior director of development for McDonald's, and Chris Varney, principal and senior VP, EMG Corp.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, facilities management, operations, procurement, contractors, consultants and vendors.


3:10-4:00pm

What’s Trending: 
Trailblazers: A panel of trend-setting retailers
►Austin 4-6  |  CEU Approved
Trailblazers = hot brands, hot companies, retail banners that are blazing a fiery trail.  What’s their secret?  Trademark Property Co. CEO Terry Montesi – an innovator in his own right – talks with a panel of retailers whose innovative brands are setting the path for the future of retail. Together they examine the current landscape and discuss what it takes to survive and thrive in the years ahead. Trailblazing panelists include Ruth Crowley, VP of customer experience design for Lowe's, Michael Koch, senior director of store development for Samsung Electronics, Andrew Newsom, president, Wisteria, Chris Delusky, head of store development, Shinola, and Kelly Radford, VP of Real Estate and Development, Warby Parker.
Who Should Attend: All titles, including store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, development, real estate, marketing, contractors, consultants and vendors.

Personal Growth & Talent: 
How to Present: Tips from the Toastmasters
►Grapevine A  |  CEU Approved
Learn from a Toastmaster expert how to effectively present yourself, both personally and professionally, as well as gain insights into technologies, tips and tools toward enhancing leadership skills and building confidence. Led by accredited Toastmaster Professional Timothy Park, assistant professor of business, Tarrant County Community College/Connect Campus.
Who Should Attend: All titles, including store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, development, real estate, marketing, contractors, consultants and vendors.

Retail Design:  
The Future of Store Design Technology
►Grapevine 1-3  |  CEU Approved
This session, moderated by Brandon Collier, director of architecture, design and store planning for RaceTrac Petroleum, offers a look at prominent 3D modeling software used to develop retail store designs. Panelists do a deep-dive comparison between Google’s Sketchup and AutoDesk’s Stingray, evaluating the advantages and disadvantages to each. Panelists include: Becky McAdams, LEED AP, VP of operations, GPD Group; Jamey Chinnock, PMP, director of design, GPD Group; Sarah Luker, senior designer, King Retail Solutions; and Andrew Swedenborg, EVP, King Retail Solutions.
Who Should Attend: Store planning, design, construction, marketing, IT, contractors, consultants and vendors
.

Top 10: 
Top 10 Construction Tech Trends
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved
This rapid-fire, 25-minute session counts down the top 10 technologies and tech trends in construction – both in use now and on the boards. Presented by Eric Russell, director of construction for L Brands; Vaun Podlogar, president of State Permits; and Brad Bogart, president of the Retail Contractors Association and president of Bogart Construction.
Who Should Attend: Store construction, facilities management, operations, development, contractors, consultants, vendors.

Top 10 Facilities Tech
►Ft. Worth 5-7  |  CEU Approved
This session offers up a 25-minute look at the latest in facilities management technology, counting down the top 10 to watch. Moderated by Thomas Kay, IoT evangelist and VP of sales and marketing for Entouch; panelists are Kelly Callahan, facilities maintenance manager, Ashley Furniture, and Harold Miller, director of operations, Corrigo Enterprise.
Who Should Attend: Facilities management, energy, operations, store planning and design, consultants, FM companies.


 4:10-5:00pm

Main Stage
SPECS Tank – Retail "Innovator of the Year"

►Grapevine 5
SPECS hosts its own SPECS Tank idea challenge and wows the audience with presentations by the next retail inventors. Modeled after a popular TV show, SPECS Tank leverages a panel of experienced judges to evaluate retail construction and maintenance ideas, tools, products and solutions conceptualized by innovative industry insiders. Winner will be named "SPECS Tank Innovator of the Year!" Contestants selected in advance. Judges are: Randy Pannell, VP of Construction, Saks Fifth Avenue; Lisa Smola-Hollo, project manager, growth and development, ULTA Beauty; Wendy Whetton, senior facilities project manager, Harbor Freight; and Craig Hale, AIA, CDP, associate, HFA. Emcee: Scott Griffin, director of design and construction, Stein Mart.
Who Should Attend: All titles, including store planning, design, construction, facilities management, energy, operations, procurement, development, real estate, marketing, contractors, consultants and vendors.


6:30-10:00PM

SPECS/2018 Appreciation Party
Glass Cactus at Gaylord Texan