Nation’s economic development leaders coming to Tampa for Summit

January 30, 2020

On February 9-11, Tampa will play host to a highly influential group of economic developers from around the country at the International Economic Development Council’s (IEDC’s) 2020 Leadership Summit. I’m especially proud of the fact that we are hosting this prestigious event together with our partners in Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas and Polk counties and that both City of Tampa Mayor Jane Castor and City of St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman will kick off the Summit and welcome the 400+ attendees to Tampa Bay.


Hosting the IEDC Leadership Summit here is significant for several reasons. First, the theme of the conference, social impact, will engage leaders in discussions about how to successfully align inclusion and growth. The accelerated pace of innovation and change have favored certain industries like tech and highly skilled, highly adaptable workers – while others have fallen behind. Certain regions – mostly densely populated metropolitan areas – that have benefited from an economic rebound have also seen a steep rise in housing costs, cost of living and income inequality.


At the Leadership Summit, economic development professionals will engage with thought leaders and peers who have implemented or are developing innovative approaches to addressing these challenges as part of their economic growth strategy. Through keynote and plenary presentations, breakout sessions and tours, attendees will gain fresh perspectives on how to intentionally foster more inclusive and sustainable growth and maximize identifiable positive impacts from projects. Summit attendees will have a chance to experience some of the most exciting placemaking projects our region has to offer: the Water Street Tampa and St. Petersburg Pier sites, Jabil’s Innovation Center and the St. Petersburg Innovation District.


The second reason our hosting this event is significant is because it allows us to showcase some of the finest thought leaders in our market. Those speaking at the Summit include Jeff Vinik of The Tampa Bay Lightning and SPP; Troy Taylor, Chairman and CEO of Coca-Cola Beverages Florida; Lorna Taylor, CEO of Premier Eye Care; Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida; Paul Anderson, CEO of Port Tampa Bay; Joe Lopano of Tampa International Airport; and Tim Moore, CEO of Diamond View Studios. These extraordinary people and the passion they bring to their respective missions are guaranteed to leave the audience fired up and inspired.


If you care to learn more about the IEDC Leadership Summit or attend, please check out their web site.


I hope your 2020 is off to a great start!


All the best,