Willie Nelson, Mother Hubbard and JAM Execs Earn EventPros

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Honoring excellence in live event production, the EventPro Awards were presented in ceremonies last night at the Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino during EventPro Forum, the fifth annual confab for key players in the live events industry, held this week in Las Vegas.

Country music legend Willie Nelson was honored last night by professionals in the live events production industry as Humanitarian of the Year.

Nelson shared the EventPro Humanitarian Award with Tom Duncan, owner of Stage Call Corporation, which provides tour coaches and tractor trailers for the singer's tours. The duo were recognized for their efforts in promoting bio-diesel fuel made from vegetable oils, which can be burned without modification to diesel engines.

Honoring excellence in live event production, the EventPro Awards were presented during EventPro Forum 2006, the fifth annual conference for live event production professionals, held this week at Golden Nugget Las Vegas.

Dubbed "Mother Hubbard" by the late Bob Hope, veteran college events producer Barbara Hubbard received the Living Legend EventPro. After a 30-year career as special events director at New Mexico State University, Hubbard serves as executive director of ACTS Scholarships, which provides scholarships for students seeking a career in the performing arts industry.

Concert and special events producers Arny Granat and Jerry Mickelson, owners of JAM Productions Ltd., Chicago, Ill., were jointly honored as EventPro of the Year. JAM Productions Ltd., the largest independent producer of live entertainment in the United States, has produced events with virtually every top name in the entertainment industry, including Garth Brooks, Billy Crystal, Paul McCartney, Steve Martin and U2.

Jeff Howard, a rookie agent with Nashville's Agency for the Performing Arts (APA), was honored with the Rising Star EventPro, which is presented to an industry newcomer who has demonstrated exceptional achievement, creativity and perseverance.

Access Pass & Design was named recipient of the Vendor of the Year EventPro. Based in Sparks, Nev., the company manufactures backstage passes and security credentials for venues, festivals, sporting events and concert tours for American Idol, Tony Bennett, Dixie Chicks, George Strait, Pink, Jessica Simpson and others.

The awards gala was emceed by comedian and magician Mac King, currently appearing at Harrah's Las Vegas. Songstress, TV actress and comedienne Lisa Donovan also performed on the awards show with the EventPro Awards Band.

Awards presenters included Marilyn Monroe impersonator Coty Alexander, Jay Leno clone Marcel Forestieri, "Las Vegas Review-Journal" Vegas Confidential columnist Norm Clarke, interntaional event producer Steve Lemon and Dennis Bono, host of "Las Vegas Now."

Nominations for EventPro Awards were solicited online at http://www.EventProForum.com from the live event production community. An advisory committee of EventPro Forum attendees determined Award Finalists. Recipients of EventPro Awards were determined by online voting by EventPro Forum attendees.

About EventPro Forum

The fifth annual EventPro Forum, a power networking conference for live event production professionals, was held March 6-8, 2006, at Golden Nugget Las Vegas. Attendees included key players in the production of live events for amphitheaters, arenas, auditoriums, casinos, concerts, conventions, corporate meetings, fairs, festivals, political campaigns, sports events, theme parks and touring entertainment. Website: http://www.eventproforum.com.

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