Explore the 2018 Annual Training Conference Program

Posted on: October 8th, 2018 by Brett Schwartz

Click here to view the conference program (PDF) 

We look forward to seeing you at NADO’s 2018 Annual Training Conference (ATC), Investing in the Future of Regional Development, which will occur in Charlotte, North Carolina on October 13-16, 2018.  The conference will be held at the Westin Charlotte (https://www NULL.marriott NULL.com/hotels/travel/cltcw-the-westin-charlotte/), located at 601 South College Street in Uptown Charlotte.  We are excited to host more than 500 regional development leaders from across the country and trust that you will find this year’s conference to be interesting, informative, and relevant!

With more than 40 plenary and breakout sessions, learning labs, conversation cafés, and mobile workshops, as well as special events that will allow for great networking, we have planned a strong event that covers a wide range of issues and topics important to your organizations and regions.  The conference also provides ample opportunity for peer networking and showcases various members’ noteworthy programs and services.

With a full slate of learning labs, mobile workshops, and various membership meetings on Saturday, October 13th  and Sunday, October 14th, the 2018 ATC will officially begin with an Opening Reception on Sunday, October 14th.   This year’s Opening Reception honors NADO’s past presidents while welcoming our newest members, board members, and executive directors.  The reception is a perfect kick off to the conference and a great setting to catch up with colleagues over light snacks and beverages.  You’ll have plenty of time after the reception to enjoy the many restaurants in Uptown Charlotte located within easy walking distance of the hotel.

This year’s Opening Plenary Session, The Future of Regions and Implications for NADO, on Monday, October 15th will feature David Beurle, CEO of Future iQ (https://future-iq NULL.com/), who is leading NADO’s strategic planning efforts.  He will discuss emerging trends that will shape regional development over the coming decades.  Attendees are encouraged to stop by the Future iQ exhibit table throughout the conference to participate in a brief survey to provide input to our ongoing strategic planning process.  Completing the survey also makes you eligible to win a 10” Touch-Screen Microsoft Surface Go!

EDA Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional Affairs Dennis Alvord will be joining us in Charlotte and will provide remarks during the luncheon on Monday.  He will be joined by EDA’s regional directors.  Please reach out to  Deputy Assistant Alvord and your Regional Directors to let them know about the critical value EDA funds have across your region.

NADO’s 2018 Aliceann Wohlbruck Innovation Awards reception on Monday afternoon will provide an opportunity for you to learn about the many exciting projects our winners have to share. This year’s awards are presented in honor of Aliceann Wolbruck, NADO’s first Executive Director, who passed away in March 2018.  Aliceann served 24 years as a tireless champion for regional approaches to economic development in rural communities.  The annual awards program was her creation as a means to help NADO members promote their successful projects locally, regionally, and nationally.  Visit with our Innovation Awards winners and become eligible to win various gift baskets.

For attendees on social media, please follow NADO’s Twitter account, @NADOWeb (https://twitter NULL.com/NADOWeb).  You can communicate with fellow attendees and NADO staff about the conference (and get conference updates) by using the hashtag #NADOATC.  We encourage you to use social media to learn more about NADO and to share your program successes and achievements.

We are pleased to offer complimentary wireless access throughout the conference in the meeting rooms, registration, and coffee break / exhibitor areas.  Free wireless access is made possible by generous support of VC3 (https://www NULL.vc3 NULL.com/).  To access the wireless signal, open Westin Meeting and enter the access code: nado2018. 

Conference registration will be held on in the Grand Promenade (2nd floor) of the Westin Charlotte at the following times:

  • Friday, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Monday, 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Please note that meeting room temperatures are not within our control and we suggest you plan accordingly and bring a sweater just in case the room is too cold. The conference is meant to be a comfortable learning experience for attendees and business casual dress is encouraged, except for the President’s Award Dinner which is business attire.  If you are attending a mobile workshop we suggest that you wear comfortable shoes.

Click here to view the conference program.

We look forward to seeing you in Charlotte for what should be an energizing and inspiring event!

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