Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Live from L.A.: The annual ACCE Convention

By Kathy Young, Director of Operations.

Last week I traveled with Market Street's CEO, Mac Holladay and our Directors of Projects and Research (Alex Pearlstein and Ellen Cutter) to attend the 2011 American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) annual convention.  Market Street serves as the  national economic development sponsor for ACCE and so our team was also there as a presenter and exhibitor. The convention provided an excellent opportunity for us to visit with old friends and former clients, and meet new friends. We were also able to congratulate ACCE's newest "CCEs" (Certified Chamber Executives) during our annual breakfast on Saturday morning. Jim Page at the Decatur-Morgan County Chamber and Ruth Littlefield, at the Tulsa Metro Chamber were among the new CCEs, representing two Market Street client Chambers. Congratulations to all the new CCEs and award winners!

While there were a wide range of interesting workshop and forum sessions, two of my favorites (and I admit a certain bias) featured Mac and Ellen. Ellen's session focused on "the Baby Boomer Economy."  Ellen framed a number of issues and presented a wide variety of information to session attendees, reflecting all the while that though the Great Recession has hurt Boomers' 401k plans, the generation remains the country’s economic driver.  Ellen's presentation explored demographic trends, growth industries, and workforce implications facing the nation and every community now that more and more boomers reach retirement age.

While there is a tremendous amount of information in the presentation, the value that Ellen brought to the session was the ability make the data, charts, and complex trends incredibly relevant for Chamber executives. It's not just about the numbers, it's about the story - in this case, the story of how we're changing, and what the practical implications of those changes are today, and in the years to come. To view Ellen's full presentation, click here. In the days to come, we'll be adding Mac's presentation as well, so stay tuned!