21 July 2020 Release from AUSA:
After careful and detailed consideration, we’ve made the difficult decision to convert the 2020 AUSA Annual Meeting from an in-person meeting to a virtual experience. Based on health and safety considerations and on-going restrictions on large gatherings, it is not possible for us to conduct an in-person meeting as we had originally envisioned.
This was a tough call. The Annual Meeting is an incredibly important event and one of our favorite ways to celebrate everything that unites us, but health and safety must come first.
The ongoing issues related to the coronavirus have had a ripple effect around the Army, across our nation and, indeed, around the world. It’s no secret that this has been a difficult time for all – soldiers and their families, our great AUSA members and volunteer leaders, defense industries large and small, and our many international partners.
We know that this announcement will come as an enormous disappointment to a wide audience that includes speakers, exhibitors, industry professionals, AUSA volunteers who planned to attend the event, Congressional staffers and the global defense community. Following increased and overwhelming concerns about the COVID-19 virus, we felt this was the best, frankly the only, way to proceed. We are very disappointed that we are unable to hold this event as we had envisioned, but we know it’s the right decision.
We’re sad, but you can’t wring your hands if you’re rolling up your sleeves, and your AUSA team is doing just that! We’re coordinating details for a large virtual event this October. While it may not replace the full experience of the in-person AUSA Annual Meeting, it will serve to keep us connected with Army senior leaders and messages, with industry partners and with AUSA members around the globe. We are planning for a forum that allows reach beyond the 33,000-plus people we expected to see in Washington, D.C., this year.
Our team will be reaching out directly to exhibitors and sponsors with information about new opportunities to support their own and AUSA’s missions, as well as information about refunds. We will post virtual event information on our website as quickly as possible.
We thank everyone who shared their views on reimagining the Annual Meeting this year. More than 1,500 responded to our survey. We read every one of your comments and we’ll strive to make the virtual experience a meaningful one for all of you.
While we’re very disappointed not to be able to host you all in person this year, please know that we are already looking forward with great anticipation to next year’s Annual Meeting from 11-13 October 2021 and a grand reunion in Washington, D.C.
For more information, visit the Annual Meeting page here. https://meetings.ausa.org/annual/