Peer Perspective: Michele Biordi, Halloween Industry Association (HIA)
Executive Director, Halloween Industry Association
Mt. Laurel, New Jersey
“What exactly does HIA do?” That’s the question Michele Biordi hears most often. As its executive director, a title Biordi has held since 2009, she is the best person to answer it. During her tenure, HIA has partnered with Urban Expositions to acquire the Halloween & Party Expo.
Could you tell us a little about your background?
I have been working with not-for-profit associations for most of my career and have been with HIA since 2009.
What question do you hear most from members or people in the industry? How do you answer?
People always ask me, "What exactly does HIA do?" HIA is the only organization that serves as the united voice for the Halloween industry. Our mission is to promote and grow the safe celebration of Halloween and year-round costume events in North America. Our primary membership is manufacturers but we also invite retailers, sales reps and associated entities to join us as members. In addition to the industry trade shows, HIA's largest focus is to address industry issues from Prop 65 in California and taxation issues in New York to federal regulations in Washington. By uniting together in one voice, the government and other bodies will listen and we have an opportunity to make a change, or in some cases avoid a change, to further the business interests of our members and the Halloween industry at large.
What’s been the biggest change in the industry during your tenure?
Partnering with Urban Expositions to purchase the Halloween & Party Expo has been the biggest change for HIA. Doing so has enabled us to source funding for major Halloween marketing initiatives that we'll be debuting this year! This effort will be ongoing and we look to involve all Halloween stakeholders, including retailers. Be on the lookout for more information in the coming weeks.
What do you enjoy doing for fun?
In the summer, you can usually find me out on water with my family when not gearing up for Halloween, my favorite holiday of course.