Epsilon Sigma Phi
The Extension Professionals' Organization

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Bidding for a National Meeting

Call for Bids to Host the National ESP Conference:  

  • Regional Rotation: The host state will rotate among the four regions when appropriate and possible in the following order: Northeast, South, North Central, West.
  • The regional vice president for the host region will initiate the distribution of information to chapters and will encourage them to submit National ESP Conference host bids.  
  • The regional vice president will initiate the call for bids from the states in the region prior to the year in which the region must submit a bid. The regional vice president will direct states wishing to submit a bid to the Bid Guidelines as found in the National ESP Handbook.
  • The potential bids will be discussed during the National Conference, regional conference calls, and the JCEP Leadership Conference where the regional vice president will provide guidance to states wishing to submit bids.
  • The regional vice president will report on discussions held with interested chapters to the National ESP Board by March 1. The Executive Director will then work with each chapter in preparing a bid. 
  • Bids should be presented to the National Board in May.  
  • The final announcement of the site which was selected by the Board will be made at the National ESP Council Meeting two (2) years in advance of that National ESP Conference.  

Selecting Conference Site

Chapters interested in preparing a bid should first notify the Executive Director. The host chapter should NOT contact or negotiate with hotels prior to notification of the National Office. To do so will limit our negotiation abilities through a private firm. Our experience has demonstrated a better contract following this process resulting in less cost to ESP and its members.  

Steps to preparing a bid:

  1. Contact the National Office with a list of potential cities for the conference and potential dates that work for the Chapter.
  2. Share with the Executive Director any desirable hotels or special considerations.
  3. Executive Director will work with a private firm to solicit bids according to ESP policy and conference needs on behalf of the Chapter.
  4. Executive Director will share all the hotel proposals received with State Chapter for consideration. Will discuss options and potential concerns of each location.
  5. State Chapter will select one or two options from the list of hotels submitting bids along with concerns. The Executive Director will start negotiations with selected hotels keeping the Chapter informed.
  6. State Chapter will make a final decision which hotel to use to prepare the bid package.

Developing the Bid Package


  • Bids are considered at the Mid-Year Board Meeting of the National ESP Board for the National ESP Conference 2 1/2 - 3 years hence. 
  • Prior to bid submissions, the Regional Vice-President should lead discussion of possible bids from chapters and prepare materials for the chapters submitting bids for consideration by the National ESP Board.  
  • States considering the submission of a bid should be directed to follow the guidelines found in this section of the handbook.
  • The announcement of the selection of the bid is made at the National ESP Council Meeting. 

The Conference Bid Package

The Executive Director can work with the Chapter to help prepare the bid package as a service to the chapter if desired. 

Potential Items to Include by Host State

  • Conference planning should be based on an attendance from 200 to 225 members.
  • State/Chapter/Host City 
  • Proposed Conference Dates. Please include information indicating that the dates do not conflict with the annual conferences of the JCEP partners and any patriotic or religious holiday of members indicating sensitivity to the celebrations of a diverse population. 
  • Airport information including airlines, sample airfares from major cities, and transportation options to hotel. 
  • Capabilities for distance learning. 
  • Potential off-site attractions for tours, free time, guests, etc. 
  • Letter of invitation from host state Epsilon Sigma Phi Chapter President. 
  • Letter of invitation from State Director of Extension in host state(s). The letter of invitation should include descriptions of the information and communications technology available in the state for transmitting and receiving distance learning programs associated with the Epsilon Sigma Phi National Professional Development Conference. Access to technical support staff related to these technologies and learning applications should be included in the descriptions. Opportunities for Epsilon Sigma Phi to co-sponsor distance learning with the host university are strongly encouraged. 
  • Willingness to accept host state(s) responsibilities suggested in the handbook. 
  • Provide a listing of potential donors of financial and in-kind resources (not a requirement). (Some in-kind contributions could be flowers/corsages, decorations for banquet and general sessions, audio visual equipment, auction costs, tour costs, photographer, entertainment, registration services, printing, distance learning costs, etc.) 
  • Provide a potential listing of professional development tours which might be incorporated with the conference or which might be offered either pre-conference or post conference. 
  • National ESP Conference Proposal Evaluation Form.  
  • Any other pertinent information. 
  • Services provided and cost. 

Items the Executive Director will include in the bid package on behalf of the Chapter

  • Tentative commitment from Hotel of choice with hotel information including: 
    • Hotel charges and contractual obligations (there is a strong preference for hotel contracts that limit the financial liability for Epsilon Sigma Phi). Hotel and other facility cancellation policies and under use of sleeping rooms penalties.
    • Hotel layout/map. 
    • Fees for audio visual use (and policies for host state providing some of the audio visual equipment), microphones, hospitality rooms, and other incidental expenses. 
    • Internet accessibility and associated charges for meeting room use and in sleeping rooms. 
    • Guest Room options and room rates (25 single, 75 doubles, suites, complimentary sleeping rooms) guests make their own reservations and payment in a reserved block of rooms. 
    • Meeting rooms - 1 room large enough to seat 250 banquet style (Ruby Luncheon and Awards Banquet); 1 room large enough for 250 people auditorium style (can be the same room as banquet room); 6-8 small meeting rooms to seat 30-40 classroom style; and a conference room to be used before and after the conference must seat 20 with a U-conference table arrangement. Ideally, the 6-8 small meeting rooms would be in addition to the banquet room. 
    • Suite option(s) for ESP President. 
    • Space for Registration and up to six display tables 
    • Space for Poster sessions with display tables or wall hanging of posters, floor easels for 20 posters would also be acceptable. 
    • Place to store audio visual equipment and auction items. 
    • List any additional charges. 
    • Other information regarding - Meals, parking fees, taxes, space for small displays, complimentary sleeping rooms, shuttle service, etc. 

Epsilon Sigma Phi is a
501(c)3 non-profit organization.

55 Walton Place Drive
Newnan, GA 30263

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