About Us

FitnessFest Conference and Expo is the largest fitness and wellness conference in the Southwest, attracting novice and veteran group exercise instructors, personal trainers, aquatic instructors, mind/body practitioners, and healthcare professionals.

Janice Jaicks, Owner

Janice has been teaching water aerobics since 1985 when she was asked to teach at the Mesa YMCA. She has worked with all populations (athletes, older adults, special populations) at health clubs and resorts since that time. Her sense of humor, motivating attitude and caring nature make her one of the most sought-after instructors in the valley. Janice has also managed and trained hundreds of aqua instructors over the past 20 years. She is the creator and presenter of Aqua Progressions, a training designed for new and veteran water aerobics instructors to learn choreography tools, review safety and contraindications for all populations, and understand the principles and properties of water for a safe, effective workout. Janice has presented for several national organizations such as IDEA World, SCW Mania, and her own FitnessFest and AquaCon conferences. 


Gretchen Carter, B.A. English, worked as an editor and instructional designer before joining up with Janice Jaicks and FitnessFest. Gretchen has been the conference coordinator, office manager and jack-of-all-trades for FitnessFest for fifteen years. Putting her writing, editing, planning, organization and customer service skills to use, Gretchen sees FitnessFest and our other events through from start to finish each year.


Amber May comes to FitnessFest with over 10 years of event management experience and a proven track record of planning and facilitating trade shows, conferences, meetings and special events. Her career encompasses the medical, advertising specialty, and software development industries. Amber holds a B.S. in Mass Media Arts, Journalism, and Communication Studies, and her CMP certification. She is also a certified Zumba Instructor. Being able to combine her love of fitness and events makes her a great fit for FitnessFest. She manages a lot of the promotional efforts for the team, performs important industry research, and has a knack for finding new attendees and vendors. Amber also assists with the social media efforts across multiple platforms.

Joanna ferguson

Joanna Ferguson has been with FitnessFest Conference & Expo for the last year, serving as a jack of all trades until finding her niche in sponsor/vendor relations. After focusing on her family and being a stay at home mom for ten years, FitnessFest coerced Joanna into rejoining the workforce as part of the team. With a strong customer service background from more than 15 years working in hospitals, restaurants and volunteering with local charities, Joanna is known for her exceptional customer service skills and outstanding attention to detail. Joanna has also organized numerous charity golf tournaments, parties and other functions throughout the past ten years, which fits perfectly with her new job here!

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