I was born and raised in New Jersey. In April 1989 I moved to Miami. At this time, I had many years in theater and lighting, so when I was looking for work, I answered an ad for an administrative assistant at a laser company. That is how I came to work for Tom Harman’s company, then called Laser Productions. After a 1993 merger it became Laser Production Network – “LaserNet” for short.
LaserNet is a founding/charter member of ILDA. In 1995, LaserNet hosted its first ILDA conference, in Miami. I was very involved in producing this conference. In many ways this was my introduction to many members of ILDA.
In 1996, I was made Vice President of the company.
In 2003 I decided to become more involved with ILDA. I joined the Conference Committee. In 2004 I worked to achieve ILDA’s first self-hosted conference, in conjunction with the LDI show in Las Vegas.
Due to this success, LDI worked with us again in 2007, assisting us with a large demo room. LDI in Orlando had its own Laser Theater! Everyone attending LDI could come in, have a beer, and watch lasers! ILDA was also able to offer laser display space to smaller members without them having to pay a large fee to be on the main trade show floor. The theater was extremely well attended. I recall it was here that most of us saw real 60k scanning for the first time!
I continued to work as Conference Committee chair. Every year, planning the conference, getting the hotel, food and beverage, working with the Awards Committee so they had what they needed, etc.
During this time, LaserNet continued its support by hosting additional conferences: In 2008 we hosted that year's Conference on board the Carnival Imagination; 2010 we hosted again on the Carnival Destiny; 2014 again in Las Vegas; and assisted again on 2019 in Orlando.
In 2008 I was first elected to the ILDA Board of Directors. In 2011 I was elected President and kept that position until 2016. During my term as President, I incorporated many changes to ILDA. Education and branding were very important to me. Giving the members value for their membership fee was also important to me. Here are some of the items I helped implement:
- Branding ILDA's logo. I worked with Patrick Murphy, ILDA Executive Director, to make sure magazine and trade shows knew who we were and printed our logo.
- Due to an issue some of our members were having in Arizona, I asked Patrick to work with Greg Makhov (ILDA Laser Safety Officer) to develop a course to give our members the training they need without having to take a 3-day Rockwell class. Greg and Patrick did a fantastic job and that course is now called the Laser Safety Officer class, thus creating the ILDA education track. ILDA now has a collection of 3 courses and provides the education our industry needs as well as bringing in some additional funds for ILDA. A win-win!
- Created the framework for “ILDA Pro”, the ILDA Accredited Professional Lasershow Company certification, which officially launched in 2013.
- As President, I asked all Board members to get involved and asked each of them to liaison with an existing committee like Awards, Conference, Technical, Marketing, etc. This way the monthly Board meetings can be productive with information coming directly from the committees.
- During my tenure, ILDA also made important changes to its Bylaws making it easier for Members to vote. These changes were voted and approved by the entire Membership.
Being a long time Girl Scout troop leader, my personal goal for anything I do is to "leave it better than you found it". I feel that is what I have done with ILDA. As ILDA's president from 2011-2016, I feel I left ILDA in a much better place than I found it. (And of course I continue to work for ILDA as Conference Committee chair.)
But don't take my word for it. Below are a couple of quotes from others who have worked with me for ILDA.
From Alex Hennig, Former Board member, ILDA 2017 CAA Winner (formerly of LOBO electronic):"When serving on the board of directors it was a great pleasure and an honor to me to work with Christine as a president for 6 years. A president who led the association through challenging times. Who always developed the right strategies and found the right words. She brought people together, but was also never scared entering conflicts when it was right for the betterment of the association. Whatever she did, she did it passionately. With her work she brought ILDA to an unprecedented level of professionalism and awareness in the entertainment industry."
Steve Heminover, Aura Technologies, Former ILDA President, Board member, and 2011 CAA Winner:"Here are a few things that make Christine Jenkin an outstanding candidate for the Career Achievement Award.
1) Only the second woman elected president of ILDA in 2011.
2) The only ILDA member to serve as president for 6 consecutive years!
3) She led the team that created the first "No Host" ILDA meeting in Las Vegas in 2004, which many thought impossible.
4) She was able to get LDI to join with ILDA for a combined conference in Las Vegas, also in 2004.
5) She has been a shining resource to many people over many years for promoting Laser Safety.
6) She is one of the pioneers that have helped to make this an industry that is known throughout the world."
In conclusion, I would like to say thank to the person(s) who nominated me and to those who decide to vote for me. I consider this a great honor to be included among so many fellow members that I have long admired.