Our First Virtual PEI Convention Was a Big Hit

November 18, 2020

UST Training staff attended the first every PEI Virtual Convention and Expo last week. And while nothing beats face-to-face interactions with old friends and new prospects, the show was actually pretty cool. UST Training was excited to make the jump to virtual conventions and we expect to see more over the next year.

Imagine going to a web page that’s a giant digital lobby. You look up and see a navigational banner at the top of the page. You can select “Sessions” to join a live class. Or you can select “Expo Hall” and browse through 60 different virtual vendor booths and live chat with a petroleum expert. Or if you just want to socialize you can stop into one of two “Lounges”, including one for PEI members and even one for Spanish-speaking members.

And yes, it sounds a bit strange and non-personal but in fact there were a number of ways to interact with conference attendees, including one-on-one chat, group, chat, email and of course Zoom.

And UST Training’s Ben Thomas was proud to have participated as a speaker, exhibitor, attendee and Board member.

Here are the convention highlights, courtesy of PEI’s Tulsa Letter)Overall

Some 900 PEI members and friends have participated in the PEI Virtual Convention & Expo, logging 67,433 visits to education sessions, Expo exhibits, games, trivia contests, lounges, breakouts and online chats.

Virtual Trade Show

Some 61 exhibitors displayed the latest in fuel handling solutions through product announcements, videos, technology demos and other resources. In its first week, the Expo recorded 11,507 booth visits and 4,695 video and document views.

PEI Board

During the Nov. 11 membership meeting, delegates elected Steve Dixon of P.B. Hoidale Co. in Wichita, Kansas, the 71st PEI president. His one-year term begins Jan. 1.

Members elected Ron Sledd of Beneficial Systems in Jetersville, Virginia, the 2021 PEI vice president. The PEI board of directors also appointed John Keller, of JF Petroleum Group in San Antonio, Texas, to a one-year term as treasurer, effective immediately.

Ben Thomas of UST Training attended his first PEI meeting in his capacity as Affiliate Division Director

Learning Sessions

At press time, the virtual convention’s 20+ education sessions have attracted 2,847 unique views. That number surpasses educational participation at any recent PEI convention in Las Vegas, Chicago or Atlanta. The two most-attended presentations are:

    • Riding the Wave of Disruption in the Fuels & Convenience Retail Industry, Brian Gray, Accenture — an optimistic exploration of how PEI members can pivot successfully to what will be a very different future. (406 attendees)
    • The State of the Industry, Rick Long, PEI — a data-driven perspective on how the industry stayed strong in 2020 and the new opportunities that lie ahead. (335 attendees)

Rounding out the top 10 most-viewed sessions are:

    • Beyond Liquid Fueling: Is EV Right for Your Business, Panel (302 attendees)
    • Forecourt Modernization: Taking EMV a Step Further, Panel (247 attendees)
    • Economic Foresight in the COVID-19 Era, Alan Beaulieu (241 attendees)
    • EPA Regulatory Update, EPA Office of Underground Storage Tanks Panel (195 attendees)
    • Safety in the World of COVID-19, Panel (172 attendees)
    • Finding and Motivating Your Very Best People, Gene Marks (145 attendees)
    • Leadership Through Change, Randy Disharoon (147 attendees)
    • Data Standards & Compliance, Panel (141 attendees) Ben Thomas of UST Training presented

The complete educational program is here.



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