Interaction: Cure for Industry Contraction
Back in the trade show swing.

It seems the electronics trade show industry had been shrinking the past year only to swell with a sudden, extreme realization venues are opening and plans that went dormant last year are coming back to life. August provided a swell of relief in the form of DesignCon. DesignCon was held Aug. 16-18 at the San Jose Convention Center, and PCEA was happy to participate with its first-ever trade show booth (FIGURE 1). A special nod from the PCEA executive staff to Eriko Yamato, our events coordinator, on design, coordination and delivery of our booth and some very special giveaway t-shirts for show attendees. Michael Creeden, PCEA vice chairman and treasurer/coordinator of our PCEA sponsors manned the booth throughout the show, with help from PCEA media coordinator Tara Dunn (FIGURE 2). Mike reports that while the show numbers seemed down a bit, the show had the spirit of a family reunion, and quite a few attendees were interested in hearing about the value of joining PCEA.

Figure 1. Michael Creeden shows off the new PCEA trade show booth.
Figure 1. Michael Creeden shows off the new PCEA trade show booth.
Figure 2. Michael Creeden and Tara Dunn looking forward to greeting show attendees at the PCEA booth.
Figure 2. Michael Creeden and Tara Dunn looking forward to greeting show attendees at the PCEA booth.
Message from the Chairman

by Stephen Chavez, MIT, CID+

As I closed out my weekly “Post-It Notes” of action items, I noticed many of them are regarding PCEA. One common theme that puts a huge smile on my face is that PCEA is active and alive within the industry. Here are a few reasons I’m ending the week on a high note:

  • PCEA had its first major physical presence (booth) at an industry conference, DesignCon 2021.
  • The PCEA Ohio had its kickoff meeting to jump-start this new chapter.
  • An industry veteran contacted me about initiating a new PCEA chapter in Texas.
  • Our Education Committee is set to publicly release an official process for publishing industry technical content on our website.

And now I am looking forward to our next major event: PCEA’s booth and presence at PCB West 2021! It will be my first face-to-face event since the pandemic hit the US. I can’t wait to get with friends and fellow industry colleagues at this event!

As I reviewed the PCB West 2021 speaker list, I noticed several are PCEA members. I love this! Let’s continue to support our fellow PCEA members and build the association at our next major event, PCB West 2021!

Warmest regards,


Next Month

As Steph mentions, our PCEA Education Committee has been hard at work crafting policies for publishing educational materials on the PCEA website and making it available to our members. Tomas Chester, our new head of the Education Committee, tells me the committee has been reviewing educational article submissions and web links to outside resources for possible posting on our website (, which he hopes will be an educational resource to the PCB engineering community. With some of the best minds in PCB engineering education on our PCEA Education Committee, I look forward to hearing more from Tomas and reporting on what they come up with.

Upcoming Events
Below is our list of upcoming events. Hope to see you at any of these!

  • PCB West 2021
    Oct. 5-8, 2021
    Santa Clara Convention Center
    Santa Clara, CA
  • SMTA International 2021
    Nov. 1-4, 2021
    Minneapolis, MN
  • PCB Carolina 2021
    Nov. 10, 2021
    Raleigh, NC
  • Productronica
    Nov. 16-19, 2021
    Munich, Germany
  • IPC Apex Expo
    Jan 22-27, 2022
    San Diego Convention Center
    San Diego, CA
  • AltiumLive 2022
    Jan 26-28, 2022
    San Diego Convention Center
    San Diego, CA
  • PCB East 2022
    April 11-13, 2022
    Marlborough, MA
Spread the Word

If you have a significant electronics industry event that you would like to announce, please send me the details at, and we will consider adding it to the list.

Refer to our column and the PCEA website to stay up to date with upcoming industry events. If you have not joined the PCEA collective, visit our website at and find out how to become a PCEA member.


We’ve been waiting for the industry to return to its robust form, once again enabling the flow of information and ideas. How great it was to experience this through our PCEA representation at DesignCon last month. Now is the time to tap the PCEA for what is coming your way. As Steph indicates, the organization is committed to trade show participation as a means to provide educational support to members. Who knows what great educational and organizational endeavors will grow from a simple booth on a show floor? I, for one, am excited to hear about any potentially historic and monumental leadership opportunities that may come about in the trade show industry as the PCEA sets up its next event right around the corner. Could we be looking forward to any big announcements? Yes, please!

See you next month or sooner!

Image of Kelly Dack
Kelly Dack, CIT, CID+,
is the communication officer for the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA). Read past columns or contact Dack at