Upcoming LTI to Feature Range of Expert Insight on Economic Development

by Sandi Burtseva

The upcoming Leadership Training Institute seminar, "Formulating Effective Economic Development Policy, Marketing and Communication Strategies," will be held May 17-19 in Manhattan Beach, Calif. The seminar will focus on helping local elected officials advance their leadership capacity in economic development.

Manhattan Beach Council Member Richard Montgomery is eager to welcome attendees to the seminar. "The City of Manhattan Beach is ... a strong community with business leaders and economic development experts who are proud of our city and it's heritage," he said.

While the current financial climate makes taking on large, capital-intensive development projects a challenge, local leaders know that economic development creates jobs and prosperity - and is therefore indispensable. For these reasons, development must be undertaken thoughtfully, with sensible policy, creative leveraging of available resources, a united approach that ties together all branches of local government and enthusiasm from community stakeholders, including residents and local businesses.

City leaders will converge in Manhattan Beach to hear from leading scholars, economic development experts, business leaders and trainers presenting an engaging program that will examine workable solutions for their community.

"As the Nation's economy struggles out of the worst economic cycle since the Great Depression, I cannot think of a more important program for America's mayors and council members," said Michael Kasperzak, Vice Mayor, Mountain View, Calif., and 2012 League of California Cities president.

Program Features

On Friday, May 18th, local leaders will be able to attend "Tools for Communicating, Marketing and Evaluating Economic Development Goals," 8:30 a.m. to noon. Workshop presenter Anatalio Ubalde is the CEO of GIS Planning Inc., an online economic development company, which sets the industry standard for site-selection websites in economic development with its ZoomProspector Enterprise web-based GIS product. He is also a co-author of the books "Economic Development Online" and "Economic Development Marketing: Present & Future."

Also on Friday, "Creating a Supportive Business Environment," will feature a panel discussion from 1 to 2 p.m., followed by a presentation until 5 p.m.

The panel discussion will feature Manhattan Beach Council Member Montgomery, as well as local business leaders: Body Glove International President Russ Lesser; Nova Medical Products Founder and CEO Sue Chen; The Simms Restaurant Group Managing Partner Mike Simms; entrepreneur, restauranteur and hotelier Michael Zislis; and General Manager of Dealer.com's West Coast Office Chad Beasley.

Following that discussion, Wayne Shell, president, CEO and founder of the California Association for Local Economic Development (CALED) will speak. Shell also serves as a Board member and officer of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and has been selected as a fellow member of IEDC for his significant contributions to the profession and practice of economic development nationally and internationally.

On Saturday, May 19th, seminar attendees will have a chance to tour large, national retailers based in Manhattan Beach: Body Glove International and SKECHERS, USA, Inc.

"Please join us in Manhattan Beach; give us the opportunity to make you feel at home as we share our work in economic development and see first-hand our successful business community," said Montgomery.

Reduced group rates (including buy two, get one free) are available to encourage cities to come as teams. The seminar is an opportunity for city officials and staff to learn together, get on the same page about critical economic development issues and be better equipped to translate new ideas into action back home. 

Details: For a special team registration rate, please contact the Leadership Training Institute at (202) 626-3170 or lti@nlc.org.