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Jim Bracken

Jim Bracken

Deceased -1-18-2022
Jim Bracken has been involved in the tradeshow industry since 1984. He was the president and owner of Capital Convention & Exhibit Company, a tradeshow management company in the Washington, DC area. His company produced the annual modern day Marine Military Exposition. His company was acquired by bill communications in 1993. Bill communications was in turn acquired by VNU. VNU changed its corporate name to Nielsen in the late 2000s. He served first as president of the exposition division from 1993-2001 and then as chairman until 2004. He subsequently reduced his time commitment to the company and became the group show director of their three Marine Military expositions: Marine West, Marine South and Modern Day Marine. He retired from Nielsen in March, 2013. Bracken has been active in tradeshow industry affairs throughout his career and served a term as chairman of the Society of Independent Show Organizers (SISO). Bracken served 26 years as a US Marine, retiring in late 1983. Since his retirement he has been active in Marine Corps matters, having served on the boards of the Marine Corps heritage foundation (6 years) and the Marine Corps scholarship foundation (6 years). Bracken earned an ab degree from Saint Michael's college in Vermont, an MBA from Pepperdine University and he completed the Harvard Business School Advance Management program. He and his wife Judy reside in Alexandria, Virginia.


  • “Without a doubt the most valuable three days of the year for networking, learning, and meeting colleagues.”
    Tony Calanca, Calanca & Associates LLC
  • “Two of the best acquisitions Access Intelligence had executed came directly from contacts and discussions held at the SISO CEO Summit. Beyond that important networking for transactions, I learn best practices from the best in the industry. The ROI for membership is immeasurable.”
    Don Pazour, CEO, Access Intelligence
  • “The impact of SISO is so much bigger than its size. It feels more like a global council of important tribes than a traditional trade association.”
    David Adler, CEO & Founder, Bizbash Media
  • “Our industry thrives on the personal relationships that face-to-face builds, and the CEO Summit is the ultimate place to build YOUR network!”
    Tom Mitchell, President, Messe Dusseldorf North America
  • “As busy, independent, for-profit organizer, SISO keeps our company connected to all the key players working in this industry and allows great relationships and ongoing learning of best practices from the best in the business. All invaluable assets to help move our business forward."
    Howard Hauben, CEO, H2 Events
  • “The SISO membership represents the entire for-profit tradeshow community and the annual SISO conferences are must-attend events for their educational and networking value.”
    Joel A. Davis, Founder & CEO, JD Events
  • Being a member of SISO has allowed me to navigate the dynamic landscape of our industry in the most effective way possible. Personally, it’s been a journey of continuous learning, networking, and collaboration that fosters deep relationships with industry leaders. Professionally, the insights I’ve gained, the resources I have accessed, and the collaborative initiatives and advocacy work have helped to take my organization to new heights. SISO, to me, is an indispensable asset for my career and business.
    Liz Irving, President, Clarion Events