Conference Location

The Alexander, 333 Delaware St, Indianapolis, IN 46204

Room Block

Rate $159 - Reserve by November 21


Registration Fees

Member | $325 (Starting DEC 1 $350) 
Nonmember | $425 (Starting DEC 1 $450) 

Additional Fees

Workshop | $40

Donate to the Silent Auction!



thursday, December 15

BR&E Workshop

8:30 am | Registration
9:00 am | Workshop
11:00 am | End of Workshop
Sign up for the workshop when you register for the conference. 

Business Retention and expansion

National statistics suggest that most new business investment and jobs come from existing companies in a community. Local economic developers often find themselves stretched between preparing for the potential of an unknown new company or spending time with local companies that have already invested in the community. ‘Business retention and expansion,’ like the name says, is the process of connecting with local companies to head off problems that may send them searching for relocation options or to facilitate their growth in your community.

This workshop will cover the basics of an effective BR&E program and how to leverage and manage the information you collect from your local companies.

The workshop will also include case studies from successful BR&E programs, highlighting results from IEDA’s Rural Economic Development Model and will include a preview of the BR&E program being launched by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation.

Jason Hester, president of the Greater Columbus Economic Development Corporation will lead and facilitate this workshop.

12:00 PM

Registration Opens

12:20 PM


12:30 PM

Fireside Chat with IEDC

Ann Lathrop, IEDC
Wendy Dant Chesser, One Southern Indiana

1:30 PM

Eric J. Holcomb, 51st Governor of the State of Indiana

1:45 PM

Networking Break

2:00 PM

Indiana Power Partners: Indiana Electric Providers and Mega Projects

Get an update from the Indiana Power Partners on their 2022 activity and their plans for 2023. Then stick around to learn more about how Indiana’s electric utilities are approaching today’s ever growing power requirements of economic development prospects. The scale of MEGA projects are growing at an exponential rate, and with it RISK. This session will dive into the unique challenges, risks, concerns, and some of the solutions utilities face when serving these MONSTER projects.
Speaker: Brian Anderson, Wabash Valley Power Alliance

3:00 PM

Networking Break

3:15 PM


Hear from industry experts in the fields of rural, technology, and mental health to learn about new and existing tools and resources that you can take away and apply to your community. Attendees can choose to participate in two of the three break out sessions. 

Social Media

Even if you don’t ‘know’ Alan Tio, you may know Alan Tio from his pervasive and effective use of social media to promote Kosciusko County. Alan will share thoughts, strategies and techniques for continuously finding new ways to keep people engaged with social media.

Alan Tio, Kosciusko Economic Development Corporation


Creativity in Rural Economic Development: Deploying the Co-op model to address challenges in small communities
Economic development in rural communities can be challenging and it takes outside-the-box thinking to solve problems that rural practitioners are often defining on the go. In this session, we look at one of the topics challenging rural Indiana communities, local and regional food systems, and how some communities are addressing this through a cooperative-based model. The session will be joined by representatives from Hoosier Harvest Market and Rosehill Farm Stop to explore the history of each co-op, how they defined and identified the need of their communities, and how they are measuring their successes today.

Deb Trocha, Indiana Cooperative Development Center

Mental Health

In the Mirror: Burnout, Mental Health, & the Economic Developer
We don’t talk much about burnout in economic development leaders. There is an overwhelming sense of commitment to service and the mission — at all costs. Burnout shows up for each of us differently, yet we experience common elements. Our energy is depleted. We’re exhausted. We have a negative perspective and become cynical, especially about our job. Sound familiar? You're not alone. This interactive session is designed for attendees to share and learn best practices to help cope with job stress as an economic development leader.

Wendy Dant Chesser, One Southern Indiana
Corey Murphy, New Castle-Henry County Economic Development Corporation

4:15 PM

Networking Break

4:30 PM

Breakouts Repeat

5:30 PM

End of Sessions

5:30 PM


9:00 PM

IEDA After Hours

Not sure what to do after dinner or the reception? Want to meet more attendees in a relaxed atmosphere? Join attendees at the hotel bar, Plat 99. 

Friday, December 16

7:30 AM


8:30 AM


8:45 AM

IEDA Legislative Update

Wendy Dant Chesser, One Southern Indiana
Heather Ennis, Northwest Indiana Forum

9:35 AM

Networking Break

10:00 AM

Activating Industrial Real Estate for Economic Development

Hear from a panel of economic development peers and real estate experts on real estate trends (2020-present and looking forward). The pressures and considerations shaping current development such as unsustainable industrial real estate markets. Strategy updates including the Strategic Sites Initiative (SSI), multistate review of econ dev real estate strategies & efforts, and case studies / execution.
Moderator: Devin Hillsdon-Smith, Hyphen Strategies
Victor Leotta, Leotta Location and Design
John Mandabach, Southwest Indiana Megasite
Dr. Treva Hodges, Mayor, City of Charlestown

11:05 AM

Keynote Presentation

Alex Perry

Alex is the CEO of Practically Speaking, LLC, host of Crash Courses in Communication podast and author of Minivan Mogul: A Crash Course in Confidence for Women. Her passion for communication comes from spending nearly two decades as a Speech-Language Pathologist, helping people regain the ability to talk after illness or injury. Alex is a motivational TEDx speaker, facilitator, and mentor. She helps others speak and share their stories with confidence using strategies she’s learned the hard way throughout her career. Her background includes advanced work in adult neurology and emotional intelligence. Alex blends her scientific approach speaking with her love of storytelling and humor into her work with individual clients and corporate teams. Most importantly, she’s a mom, minivan driver, and front-row fan of her clients.

Courageous Confidence: Conquering Self Doubt with Communication

From social media make-believe to unrealistic lifestyle standards to workplace inequality, it is no wonder today's workforce struggles to find confidence. It's easy to believe that there's a checklist of traits, possession, or accomplishments we must have before we can say, "I'm confident." In this sixty-minute engaging keynote, Alex teaches three fundamental keys to confidence and shares how overcoming doubt is within our power, starting with how we talk with ourselves.

12:05 PM

End of Conference

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