Program

9:00 am - 12:30 pm

Tour: Buffalo's Blue Economy ($)

The Niagara Power Vista is where science meets the playground - an exciting, interactive adventure from the New York Power Authority designed for inquisitive minds of all ages. You will understand electricity through the eyes of pioneers like Nikolai Tesla and Thomas Edison as well as modern-day scientists. Experience what it was like to build one of the largest hydro plants, harnessing the power of Niagara Falls, and then see how it provides power to the world's largest machine - the U.S. electrical grid.

Price: $55

2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Opening Plenary Session

IEDC's 2018 Economic Future Forum kicks off with welcoming remarks from the Host Committee and presentations from economic development leaders.

Master of Ceremonies:

Thomas A. Kucharski, CEcD, President & CEO, Invest Buffalo Niagara, Buffalo, NY

Welcoming Remarks:

Byron Brown, Mayor of Buffalo, City of Buffalo, Buffalo, NY

Moderator:

Calandra Cruickshank, President & CEO, StateBook International, Kingston, NY

Keynote Speaker:

Chuck Vollmer, Founder, Jobenomics, Vienna, VA

3:45 pm - 5:25 pm

Concurrent Sessions - Speed Sessions

Each Speed Session will be offered from 3:45 - 4:30 and from 4:40 to 5:25, allowing attendees to attend two different sessions during the 100 minute timeframe.


Reducing the Achievement Gap Across Racial and Socio-Economic Divides

The obtainment of a high school or college degree by African Americans and Hispanics lags far behind that of white working-age adults. This is a growing problem that is reducing the number of people companies consider “employable” in your workforce. As unemployment declines in the U.S., it is time to make sure there’s opportunity for all and we are maximizing opportunities for all people of employable age. In looking at the cause and possible remedies of this educational attainment gap, it has been recognized that community colleges, employers and other educational partners can make a difference at the local level. This session will dive into some of the causes of the educational attainment gap and how economic developers can play a role in growing this underutilized segment of the potential workforce in your community.

What you will learn:
• The economic cost of the education attainment gap and why every economic developer needs to be concerned
• Barriers that prevent some student from completing high school or college
• What’s working: community colleges and other educational partners that are building success with minority students

Speaker:

Rebecca Naragon, Economic Development Director, United South and Eastern Tribes (USET), Inc., Nashville, TN


Natural Wonder Tourism: Mother Nature’s Gift

From caverns to the Milky Way and everything in between, natural wonders can provide a unique draw for people looking for a refreshing tourism experience. This session will highlight communities that have developed their natural assets for tourism purposes. We will delve into how to maximize the time spent and the dollar expended through developments in lodging, dining, shopping and other outdoor activities.

What you will learn:
• How small and rural communities can prepare to handle an influx of tourists
• Ensuring the tourism of natural wonders does not turn detrimental for your precious assets
• Special designations and certifications that can help put your natural destinations on the map

Speaker:

Bryan Bossuyt, Vice President of Marketing, Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau, Stroudsburg, PA
Diane Wieland, Director, Cape May County Department of Tourism, Cape May Court House, NJ


Future of Work

The work place is a-changin’. From punch clocks to flextime, cubicles to treadmills desks, and headquarters to remote workers, the workplace is rapidly evolving. This session will look at the changes in workplaces across a variety of industries and will help economic developers recognize change on the horizon so they can continue to support new and established businesses.

Moderator:

Andrew T. Levine, President & Chief Creative Officer, Development Counsellors International, New York, NY

Speaker:

John Karras,Senior Consultant, TIP Strategies, Austin, TX
Dean Whittaker, CEcD, President, Whittaker Associates, Inc., Holland, MI

8:30 am - 9:30 am

A Primer to the CEcD Exam Process: What You Need to Know

New candidates applying to sit for an exam must participate in "A Primer to the CEcD Exam Process: What You Need to Know" either in-person or via webinar. This workshop provides candidates with a complete overview of the Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) exam process, from application to the oral examination. They will learn tools and techniques for preparing for the exam and witness a mock oral interview.

Price: Free, but registration is required

8:30 am - 10:00 am

Monday Plenary Session

Conference attendees will hear from the IEDC Chair and from speakers offering an exciting view of economic development from their perspective.

Keynote Welcome:

Mark Poloncarz, Esq., County Executive, Erie County Government, Buffalo, NY

Keynote Speaker:

Norma Nowak, Executive Director, NYS Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics & Life Sciences, Buffalo, NY

10:15 am - 11:45 am

Concurrent Sessions

The Benefits of Transit-Oriented Development

Transit-oriented development (TOD) is defined as mixed-use development within a half mile of quality public transportation. Encouraging TOD helps to reduce sprawl, results in less traffic and lowers the financial burden of owning a car. In addition, jobs that are accessible via public transportation make them more accessible to segments of the population that are lower income. Economic developers have a role to play in encouraging TOD and this session will explore successful examples.

What you will learn:
• Examples of states that have pioneered the use of subsidies to encourage transit-oriented development
• How to bring together economic development land use and transportation planning to achieve transit-oriented development
• The impacts of transit-oriented development on different racial groups and socio-economic classes

Speaker:

Kevin Gremse, Director, National Development Council, New York, NY
Darren Kempner, Manager, Grants and Government Affairs, Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, Buffalo, NY
Hal Morse, PMP, Executive Director, Buffalo Niagara Regional Transportation Council, Buffalo, NY
Melissa Ziegler, CEcD, Principal and Lead Practioner, CDM Smith, Knoxville, TN


Industry Forecasts and Roundtables – Real Estate, Retail and Entertainment

Things are changing quickly in the industries that are major job creators and sustainers in your communities. This session will start with 10 minute presentations from experts in a variety of industries that will report on what they see to be the biggest disruptions and bright opportunities in the years to come. After the presentations, the experts and presenters will be invited to engage in a conversation about the future of certain industries.

Industries that will be covered include:
• Real Estate
• Retail
• Entertainment

Moderator:

Jarred Kessler, CEO, Easyknock, New York, NY

Speaker:

Chris Fair, President, Resonance Consutlancy, Vancouver, BC
Kent Gardner, Chief Economist, Center for Governmental Research, Rochester, NY
Julian B. Kiganda, CEO & Founder, JBK Brand Design LLC


Industry Forecasts and Roundtables – Professional Services, AI, Finance

Things are changing quickly in the industries that are major job creators and sustainers in your communities. This session will start with 10 minute presentations from experts in a variety of industries that will report on what they see to be the biggest disruptions and bright opportunities in the years to come. After the presentations, the experts and presenters will be invited to engage in a conversation about the future of certain industries.

Industries that will be covered include:
• Professional Services
• Artificial Intelligence
• Finance and Banking

Speaker:

Brian J. Wishneff, President, Brian Wishneff & Associates, Roanoke, VA

12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Keynote Luncheon

The most extensive plenary session of the conference, this luncheon features a presentation on economic development from senior leaders.

Keynote Speaker:

J.P. Bak, Esq., Chief Executive Officer, Bak USA, Buffalo, NY
Ulla Bak, Esq., President, Bak USA, Buffalo, NY

1:45 pm - 3:15 pm

Concurrent Sessions

Waterfronts: On the Banks of a New Economic Development Opportunity

Once used mostly for the movement of goods and people, waterways are being cleaned up and reimagining as recreational opportunities and as enhancements to historic downtowns. Clean rivers and other waterways can be an attractive addition to a city center or a destination in their own right for recreation. This session will look at successful examples of communities that have brought together volunteers, public institutions and private investors to take their industrial or underutilized waterways and have turned them into destinations within the community.

What you will learn:
• How communities of all sizes are finding new growth opportunities through the redevelopment of their waterways from industrial to exhilarating uses
• Examples of turning a riverfront into a business attraction tool and community gathering place
• Maximizing rivers and trails for tourism and as a quality of life asset for local residents

Speaker:

Thomas Blanchard Jr., HLM, Blanchard LLC, Buffalo, NY
William Needelman, Waterfront Coordinator, City of Portland, Portland, ME
Bob Radliff, Executive Director, Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, Waterford, NY


The Deal with Data Scientists

Data scientists are in demand in many different industries. By some estimates, there will be 700,000 openings for this job by 2020. These individuals are utilized by a variety of industries that use their skills to unlock the mysteries in vast amounts of data by developing algorithms to detect patterns or anomalies and by applying machine learning concepts so that algorithms can constantly improve themselves. This session will look at the rising demand for this profession and what economic developers need to know in order to support the workforce development.

What you will learn:
• Industries and cities that are producing the largest demand for data scientists
• Career pathways for data scientists, from college to specialized boot camps
• Educational and workforce development programs being deployed by communities in order to meet rising demand

Speaker:

Kirk Borne, PhD, Principal Data Scientist and Executive Advisor, Booz Allen Hamilton, Junction, MD
Michael Moskal, CIO & Sr. Vice President, CUBRC, Inc., Buffalo, NY
Joshua Wright, Director of Economic Development, Emsi, Moscow, ID


Brownfields: So Much Potential, So Much To Do

Brownfields are found in every city - be it a shuttered factory, a dead strip mall or a local business that used dangerous chemicals. No matter their history, there is potential for new life and business opportunity at each site through redevelopment efforts. This session will look at how you can put brownfield spaces to work in your economy. We will look at the common impediments to brownfield redevelopment, such as location factors, dedicated leadership and resources that will ensure the project is seen through until completion. We will also explore the traditional and creative uses for rehabilitating vacant buildings and old industrial sites.

What you will learn:
• Assessing the current desirability for brownfield development based on the real estate market and available resources
• Helping private sector see the potential in brownfield sites to create a market and momentum for redeveloped sites
• Best practices from brownfield sites in a variety of different communities

Speaker:

Susan Boyle, Senior Consultant, GEI Consultants, Inc., Mount Laurel, NJ
Pete Lopez, Regional Administrator, EPA Region 2, New York, NY


Innovating Beyond Borders

The increasing globalization of innovation is forcing regions to think beyond their borders. However, borders remain a barrier, even for neighboring regions. Many regional strategies don't take this lucrative cross-border dimension into account, constituting missed opportunities.

Collaborating with cross-border neighbors can serve as a catalyst to creating a global presence, expanding commerce, tech commercialization, jobs creation, and increasing economic impact. Partnering beyond borders also heightens political strength given that funding at the national level for most countries, and the allocation of resources often stop at the border.

This free flowing roundtable type discussion will equip participants with implementable tools and actionable insights for the creation of a cross-border ecosystem.

What you will learn:
• How to gather key stakeholders to the table for discussions on the benefits of cross-border collaboration
• How to assess cross-border strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats
• Tips on governing cross-border collaboration through MOU’s and treaties
• Ways to develop goals and objectives for an effective cross-border strategic plan
• Why measuring success through data collection, and reporting out through case studies is vital to the success of the initiative

2:30 pm - 5:15 pm

Tour: Buffalo's Industrial Transformation ($)

Buffalo's industrial heritage was once a blight on our community but has been transformed to accommodate emerging technology and provide employment opportunities for area residents. Tour of former brownfield sites that are now home to advanced manufacturing operations, including the joint venture between Tesla and Panasonic, a state-of-the-art logistics center (Sonwil) in a business park on a reclaimed brownfield (Buffalo Lakeside Commerce Park), a unique technical services company that helps manufacturers innovate (Buffalo Manufacturing Works), and the site of the future Advanced Manufacturing Campus on Northland Avenue.

Price: $55

3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Concurrent Sessions

#SoInfluential: Helping the Social Media Entrepreneurs in Your Community

Armed with an eye for aesthetic, an articulate voice, and at least a moderately good internet connection, people are creating their own businesses via social media. These days, people are using their free time to develop an online persona and social media following that launches them into the realm of being an influencer. Whether they are blogging about food, fitness, or fashion, there are opportunities for people in communities of all sizes to find their fame and fortune online. This session will dive into the world of social media influencers and bloggers as a profession, and what you can do to provide them with business assistance.

What you will learn:
• How people are making money on social media as influencers
• The role for economic developers in providing support for social media entrepreneurs
• Broader understanding of career and revenue-generating opportunities available to social media influencers

Speaker:

Alissa Sklar, PhD, Vice President of Marketing, GIS Planning, Inc., Westmout, QC
Sandy Sponaugle, CEO, Platinum PR, Shepherdstown, WV
Sherron Washington, MA, CEO, The P3 Solution, Silver Spring, MD


Industry Forecasts and Roundtables - Manufacturing, Education and Healthcare

Things are changing quickly in the industries that are major job creators and sustainers in your communities. This session will start with 10 minute presentations from experts in a variety of industries that will report on what they see to be the biggest disruptions and bright opportunities in the years to come. After the presentations, the experts and presenters will be invited to engage in a conversation about the future of certain industries.

Industries that will be covered include:
• Manufacturing
• Education
• Healthcare

Moderator:

Ryan Silva, Executive Director, New York State Economic Development Council

Speaker:

Iryna Lendel, PhD, Director, Center for Economic Development, Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, Cleveland, OH
Benjamin Rand, President, Insyte Consulting, Buffalo, NY


Industry Forecasts and Roundtables - Construction, Agriculture, Energy

Things are changing quickly in the industries that are major job creators and sustainers in your communities. This session will start with 10 minute presentations from experts in a variety of industries that will report on what they see to be the biggest disruptions and bright opportunities in the years to come. After the presentations, the experts and presenters will be invited to engage in a conversation about the future of certain industries.

Industries that will be covered include:
• Construction
• Agriculture
• Energy

Speaker:

Ron Bertasi, CEO, GIS WebTech, Cumming, GA
Crystal Stiles, Director of Economic Development, Florida Power & Light, Juno Beach, FL


Future Ready: How EDOs can Prepare for Tomorrow’s Economy

Artificial intelligence (AI), Big Data, 3D printing, robotics, machine learning, blockchain. These terms are not just fancy words used by sci-fi geeks, but real technological advancements disrupting entire industries in ways that are not completely understood yet. This session will launch IEDC’s latest research paper, “Future Ready: How Economic Development Organizations Prepare for Tomorrow’s Economy” – developed by our elite think-tank, the Economic Development Research Partners (EDRP) program. The paper examines trends and cutting-edge developments in a broad array of industries that have the potential to impact economic development in the future. Most importantly, it offers a framework for EDOs to be better prepared for disruptive changes.

What you will learn:
• How the economy and nature of work is changing
• Examples of EDOs that are deploying new programs and working in new ways to better support their local jurisdictions
• A new framework examining the cross-cutting impacts of changing technologies and evolving skills from an economic development perspective

8:30 am - 10:00 am

Plenary Session


The Economic Future Forum continue with this morning's session featuring speakers offering an exciting view of economic development from their perspective.

Keynote Speaker:

Richard Ferranti, President & Chief Operating Officer, Rich Products Corporation, Buffalo, NY
Jeremy "Jerry" Jacobs, Jr., Co-Chief Executive Officer, Delaware North, and Alternate Governor, Boston Bruins

10:15 am - 11:55 am

Concurrent Sessions - Speed Sessions

Each Speed Session will be offered from 10:15 - 11:00 and from 11:10 - 11:55, allowing attendees to attend two different sessions during the 100 minute timeframe.


Getting Ideas out of the Lab and Commercializing for Success

Institutes of higher education are hotbeds for inventions with their highly educated staff, resources and entrepreneurial support systems. However, new technologies serve no one and certainly do not promote economic development if they simply remain in the lab. This session will look at best practices in moving useful inventions from the university to commercial success and the role for economic developers.

What you will learn:
• How economic developers can connect their business community with commercialization offices to bring inventions into a profitable position
• Examples of prolific university-economic development ecosystems that are capitalizing on local research and development
• Utilizing resources at the university to help businesses protect their intellectual property

Speaker:

Andrea Margida, INBIA, President, TechGrit, Alliance, OH
Anthony Margida, PhD, CEO, TechGrit, Alliance, OH
Christina Orsi, Associate Vice President, Economic Development, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY


Health and Wellness Tourism: Offering the Fountain of Youth in Your Community

People are living longer than ever before and they want to live well. Wellness tourism is a growing segment of the industry that encompasses spiritual, mental, emotional and physical activities that help the traveler feel rejuvenated. From hot spring resorts to yoga retreats and everything in between, opportunity abounds for your community to capitalize on the wellness tourism trend. This session will look at some communities of all sizes and how they have become a destination to wellness travelers.

What you will learn:
• Trends about wellness travelers in terms of what they look for and how they like to spend their time and money
• How wellness tourism fits in overall with other niche tourism such as culinary, cultural and eco tourism
• How to support wellness businesses in your community and collective market your community as a wellness destination

Speaker:

Katherine Johnston, Senior Research Fellow, Global Wellness Institute, Bethlehem, PA
Mim Senft, CEO of Motivity and Co-founder of GW4W, Motivity Partnerships and Global Women 4 Wellbeing (GW4W), Grove, NY


Succession Planning for Businesses

Small businesses are the lifeline of the US economy. In addition to being the biggest type of employer in the US, they also pass through the hands of several generations, being a reliable employer in the local economy. However, there inevitably comes a time when either the owner wants to sell, the heir does not have an interest in going into the family business, or the economics of keeping the doors open no longer makes sense. Your community does not need to lose these businesses. Economic developers have a role to play in finding these businesses and helping them transition in a way that is least disruptive to the local economy.

What you will learn:
• How to find the businesses in your community that are entering a period of transition and how to get them connected with the services you can provide
• Succession planning for a variety of businesses and ownership structures
• Successful examples of businesses changing ownership with limited layoffs or disruption to the local economy

Speaker:

Sarah Blankenship, MBA, COO/ Financial Planner, Wilcox Financial Group, LLC, Williamsville NY
Nicholle Overkamp, MBA, Retirement Planning Specialist CEO, Wilcox Financial Group, LLC, Williamsville NY

1:00 pm - 4:45 pm

Tour: Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus ($)

The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) is an innovative and collaborative, multi-anchor project. The campus was created by community stakeholders who had the ambition of altering the trajectory of Buffalo's economic landscape. Through member institutions and partners, the campus aims to ignite urban revitalization and to build a strong thriving community.

Situated on 120-acres in the urban innovation district, the campus was created as a way to leverage the economic impact of eight of the region's leading health care, research, and education institutions. Over the past ten years the BNMC has met many noteworthy milestones:

- Received $1.4B in commercial infrastructure investment,
- Increased from 4.5m to 9m sq ft of clinical, research, and development space,
- Supported a workforce of over 10,000 employees, and
- Created a growing cluster of 150+ technology, energy, life sciences, bioinformatics, manufacturing, social innovation, and not-for-profit companies.

The ongoing placemaking efforts showcase the dynamic intersection of technology, health, discovery and collaboration.

Price: $55

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