Mar 3, 2014

Madison Region Economic Partnership & Urban League of Greater Madison to Host Joint Economic Development, Diversity, & Leadership Summit

PRESS RELEASE: March 3, 2014

Madison, Wis. – In a first-of-its-kind collaboration, the Madison Region Economic Partnership (MadREP) and the Urban League of Greater Madison (ULGM) will host a joint event for Madison Region business and community leaders focused on economic development, diversity, and leadership.

Advancing Talent, Opportunity & Prosperity:
The Madison Region’s Economic Development, Diversity & Leadership Summit
Friday, May 9, 2014, 7:30am-4pm
Monona Terrace Community & Convention Center, Madison, Wis.

The event marries MadREP’s annual State of the Madison Region Summit and ULGM’s Workplace Diversity & Leadership Summit to illustrate the interconnectivity of both organizations’ strategies and missions, centered on the underlying principle that authentic collaboration is integral to advancing the Madison Region’s economy and improving opportunities for all the region’s citizens.

The day-long Summit will be a solution-oriented event, designed to engage, inspire, and empower attendees around issues related to economic, workforce, and community development. The Summit will illustrate outcomes and feature speakers related to MadREP’s five-year Advance Now Strategy for economic growth and UGLM’s initiatives designed to transform our communities into the Best in the Midwest for everyone.

“The Advance Now Strategy relies on collaboration and involvement at every level. Economic, workforce and community development are inherently intertwined,” notes Paul Jadin, president of MadREP. “With this partnership, we are committed to bringing together a diversity of voices to address the region’s challenges, celebrate our progress, and leverage the opportunities that will ensure our economy’s continued growth.”

“As we work toward a shared vision for a better community, we recognize the critical role that diversity and inclusion play in business and economic growth,” says Kaleem Caire, president & CEO of ULGM. ”This Summit marks an important milestone in our collective efforts to bring the public and private sectors together to work toward more positive outcomes for all the region’s residents.”

The Summit will feature several esteemed speakers, including:

  • Joel Kotkin, a renowned author and internationally-recognized authority on global, economic, political and social trends, will deliver the morning plenary address. Mr. Kotkin is the author of The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050, a book that explores how the nation will evolve in the next four decades. He is the Roger Hobbs Distinguished Fellow in Urban Studies at Chapman University in Orange, Cal. and executive editor of the widely read website
  • Ken Salazar, former U.S. Senator (2005-2009) and U.S. Secretary of the Interior (2009-2013), will deliver the afternoon plenary address. Secretary Salazar has a broad history as a farmer, small business owner, lawyer and politician, and is one of just nine Hispanic senators to serve the United States. He is currently a partner at the law firm WilmerHale.
  • Maria Campbell, who held a 28-year tenure as Corporate Director of Diversity for SC Johnson, will be a featured speaker in the breakout sessions. She is a consultant providing executive leadership development, training, and lecturing on diversity and inclusion as a key driver for business growth and empowerment.

Participation from across the eight-county Madison Region is encouraged, with an anticipated audience of hundreds of business executives, community leaders, economic development professionals, educators, elected officials, entrepreneurs, and emerging leaders.

Registration is available online now at Early bird rates ($199 standard/$99 nonprofit/government) are effective through April 28. Sponsorship and group rate benefits are also available.

About Madison Region Economic Partnership (MadREP)
Madison Region Economic Partnership (MadREP) is the lead economic development agency for the eight-county Madison Region with a vision to create a dynamic environment where people and businesses thrive. MadREP’s mission is a five-plank platform, which includes economic competitiveness, innovation & entrepreneurship, human capital, marketing, and leadership & diversity. Through these five goal areas, MadREP and its partners aim to proactively and strategically position the region to take advantage of economic opportunities while preserving and enhancing quality of life.  The Madison Region includes Columbia, Dane, Dodge, Green, Iowa, Jefferson, Rock, and Sauk counties.

About Urban League of Greater Madison (ULGM)
The mission of the Urban League of Greater Madison is to ensure that African Americans and other community members are educated, employed and empowered to live well, advance professionally and contribute to the common good in the 21st Century. ULGM is committed to transforming Greater Madison into the Best [place] in the Midwest for everyone to live, learn, and work. ULGM works to make this vision a reality through a comprehensive strategic empowerment agenda that includes programs & services, advocacy, partnerships, and coalition building.

Deirdre Hargrove-Krieghoff,, 608.729.1208
Betsy Lundgren,, 608.443.1961