Featured Associate Members

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November 19, 2018 

Steve Backer
Sales Manager
University Plaza Hotel
& Convention Center 


Steve helps planners execute brilliant events for professionals of all industries. As the associations Sales Manager for University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center in Springfield, Missouri, he knows the positive impact that a conference can provide to a professional’s career and how that can improve a workplace or an entire field. He says he entered the hospitality industry on accident and when asked about the best part of his job, he says “witnessing two people in the lobby reconnect after not seeing each other since their last meeting. We know it’s our job to provide them a great venue and we make it our responsibility to provide them a great experience.”

Prior to University Plaza, Steve worked in the education field with roles in fundraising and event planning and earned two degrees from Southeast Missouri State University. Steve lives with his wife Laura (whom he met at an association's meeting) and his step-dog, Molli – an eight-year-old pug. In his spare time, he volunteers with his fraternity and his church, enjoys college football and the St. Louis Cardinals, and is an aspiring amateur golfer.


September 17, 2018 

Kay Samuelson
Regional Sales Mgr.
The Lodge of
Seasons Golf
Resort, Marina and
MSAE Associate 
Member Director

Kay is a dedicated and seasoned regional hotel sales manager who works diligently to lay the groundwork for successful association and government conferences for her clients.  With an 18 year career at the same beautiful lake property, steeped in tradition and excellent customer service, she strives to demonstrate a long history of excellence in the hospitality industry.

While skilled in the sales process, hotel contracts, return on investment for clients, catering trends, hotel & property management operations, and event management – Kay has especially enjoyed building strong long-lasting industry relationships along the way, as well as mentoring the next generation of sales talent for their career and life goals.

Kay is a member of the ISAE, SLSAE, KCSAE, KSAE and the Iowa Society of Association Executives, along with the Society of Government Meeting Professionals (SGMP), and the Missouri Travel Council.  Married for 25+ years to her husband, Bruce.  They share 4 grown children and very much enjoy spending quality time with their grandchildren.

Kay has one year remaining of her current 2-year MSAE Associate board member position and has served 4 prior terms.  She has been active on several MSAE committees including the MO Event Summit committee, the 

Education/Programs committee, Funfest committee, and has served as a round table and panel discussion leader on numerous occasions during her nearly 16 years as a member of MSAE.


September 1, 2018 

Emily Kampeter
Second Vice President
Central Bank

Emily develops and maintains financial relationships with governmental entities, and interacts with state and local agencies, statewide associations and a variety of public institutions, including non-profit organizations and foundations. From cash management to investments or credit cards to fraud protection, She is happy to use her association expertise to assist your organization.

Emily received a degree in Communications from Truman State University. She’s currently seeking a graduate degree in banking from the American Bankers Association’s Stonier Graduate School of Banking at the University of Pennsylvania and a leadership certificate from The Wharton School. She has been married to her husband, Joshua, for 12 years and they have two children, Sophie and Eli. They are very involved with Immaculate Conception Catholic Church and School, Young Life and their children’s activities.

Emily will complete her term on the MSAE Board as an Associate Member Director this month. She brought a unique perspective and energy to the board and MSAE thanks her for her service to our society and our industry.