Patrick Ibarra, Co Founder and Partner, Mejorando Group

Image removed.Patrick Ibarra is an architect of innovation and entrepreneur of ideas, who seeks to challenge the status quo thinking of the "we've always done it that way" approach. With experience as a city manager and consultant in a Fortune 500 company, he advises government leaders and high achievers from around the world, helping them clarify their direction, focus their efforts and execute to achieve sustainable change and improved performance. Patrick is co-founder and partner of the Mejorando Group, an organizational effectiveness consulting firm that brings fresh thinking, innovation, and next practices to help governments succeed in the 21st century. Mejorando is a Spanish word meaning "getting better all the time" and it reflects Patrick and his firm's approach with clients who seek to improve the performance of their organizations and the individuals within them. The Mejorando Group's clients include a variety of state and local government agencies nationwide.

Stephen Goldsmith, Daniel Paul Professor of the Practice of Government and the Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government

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Stephen Goldsmith is the Daniel Paul Professor of the Practice of Government and the Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He currently directs Data-Smart City Solutions, a project to highlight local government efforts to use new technologies that connect breakthroughs in the use of big data analytics with community input to reshape the relationship between government and citizen. He previously served as Deputy Mayor of New York and Mayor of Indianapolis, where he earned a reputation as one of the country's leaders in public-private partnerships, competition, and privatization. Stephen was also the chief domestic policy advisor to the George W. Bush campaign in 2000, the Chair of the Corporation for National and Community Service, and the district attorney for Marion County, Indiana from 1979 to 1990. He has written the The Power of Social Innovation; Governing by Network: the New Shape of the Public Sector; Putting Faith in Neighborhoods: Making Cities Work through Grassroots Citizenship and The Twenty-First Century City: Resurrecting Urban America.

Neil Kleiman, Director of the NYU Wagner Innovation Labs

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Neil Kleiman serves as the Director of the NYU Wagner Innovation Labs.  He has spent nearly 20 years building a career at the intersection of many sectors—policy, media, philanthropy, government and academia. He has established new organizations and divisions within organizations focused on developing innovative and practical policy solutions. Neil has written and edited over thirty policy reports and his work has been featured in many media outlets including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Chronicle of Higher Education, Education Week and National Public Radio. In February 2011, Neil joined New York University to create new vehicles focused on urban innovation nationally and globally. Neil has established the first set of initiatives including projects with Bloomberg Philanthropies, federal agencies in the Obama administration and the New Cities Foundation.

Amy Holloway, President and Chief Sherpa, Avalanche Consulting

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Amy Holloway is the energetic leader of Avalanche Consulting, Inc., one of the nation’s leading economic development strategy firm. Avalanche generates and translates research into targeted economic development strategies, brand identities, and marketing platforms. For the past 19 years, she has crafted economic development strategies for economic development organizations across the US and abroad. Amy and the Avalanche team have had the privilege of working for great organizations such as Team Texas, the Greater Houston Partnership, Innovation Gainesville, the Upstate SC Alliance, Southeast Coahuila, GO Topeka, Provo City, the Charleston Regional Development Alliance, the JAXUSA Partnership, Miami-Dade County’s Beacon Council, the Bastrop EDC, the Brownwood EDC, and CenterPoint Energy, just to name a few.