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Trailblazing Co-Founder of Cypress Planning Group Recognized Among
Top Entrepreneurs in 2024 Smart Women in Meetings Awards

March 4, 2024

Cypress Planning Group is proud to announce the recognition of company partner, co-owner, and hospitality industry veteran Kathan Dearman among the top Entrepreneurs in the 2024 Edition of Smart Women in Meetings Awards.​

Now in its ninth year, this annual awards program from Smart Meetings has become an important industry landmark and a cherished achievement for women who are making a significant impact and elevating the meetings industry.

The industry’s top female meeting professionals are highlighted in seven prestigious categories: Hall of Fame, Visionaries, Industry Leaders, Innovators, Entrepreneurs, Stellar Performers, and Rising Stars. Recognized in a special edition of Smart Meetings and honored at the bespoke Smart Women in Meetings Gala, Kathan ranks among a distinguished list of visionary women in the Entrepreneur Award category.

Known best for her “client-centric, strategic, and collaborative” nature, Kathan Dearman has a passion for discovering shared interests, building connections, and consistently delivering unparalleled service and value to her esteemed clients.

Adds Dearman, “In my world, relationships are the heartbeat of connection.”

Kathan talks about the moment that she knew she belonged in the meetings industry:


During my hotel career, I assisted a client who had never used an official RFP in creating a hotel RFP for their 500-person annual conference, guiding them through the process of presenting their needs to a hotel in a structured format. Years later, while establishing Cypress Planning Group, the same client sought meeting planning support for their expanding conference. They became our inaugural client, and to my surprise, they were still utilizing the RFP I had crafted for them years ago. Today, they remain a loyal client, and the conference has surpassed well over 1,000 attendees.

Cypress Planning Group began its adventure nearly nine years ago, with a vision to bring industry insight, meeting sourcing, and planning services to clients. Since then, business has continued to grow and flourish.

To read the full feature on Kathan, click here

Kathan Dearman and other Smart Women in Meetings Award winners can be found featured in the Smart Meetings online and print publications, and will receive on-stage honors at the Smart Women in Meetings Awards gala at the Smart Woman Summit held at Caesars Palace Las Vegas on Friday, Aug. 16, 2024.

About Smart Meetings

Smart Meetings is the leading meetings industry publisher and voice of inspiration for meeting professionals. We inspire our audience of meeting and event professionals to dream big—and create brilliant experiences that delight attendees, achieve desired results and elevate the impact of the meetings industry. Smart Meetings publishes cutting-edge meetings content in print and digital magazines 12 times per year, hosts world-class networking events, produces CEU-accredited webinars and offers a myriad of digital resources.


Cypress Planning Group

Collette Csintyan

Manager, Marketing & Meeting Services

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