<< All News Thursday, September 17, 2020 - 11:22 am

The North Dakota Department of Commerce today announced the featured speakers for the 2020 Main Street ND Summit, to be held virtually Oct. 6-7. 

Commerce, in partnership with the Economic Development Association of North Dakota, the North Dakota Council on the Arts and Prairie Business Association, will host this year’s summit with a focus on building resilient communities. 

Participants will have the opportunity to learn virtually about resiliency from local and national leaders and hear about future opportunities from statewide youth representatives. As a result of industry support, registration is only $20 for those wishing to participate. 

The two-day interactive virtual summit will serve as a forum for information on the community planning principles behind the three pillars of Gov. Doug Burgum’s Main Street Initiative: a 21st century workforce; smart, efficient infrastructure; and healthy, vibrant communities. 

Featured speakers for the summit will include: 

Jeff Speck, a city planner and urban designer who advocates internationally for more walkable cities. 

As the director of design at the National Endowment for the Arts from 2003 through 2007, Speck presided over the Mayors' Institute on City Design and created the Governors' Institute on Community Design. Prior to his federal appointment, Speck spent 10 years as director of Town Planning at DPZ & Co., the principal firm behind the New Urbanism movement.  

Stephen Goldsmith, is an artist and founder of Artspace Utah, a non-profit organization developing affordable living and workspace for artists and other creators, including incubator spaces for other non-profit agencies and start-up businesses. Goldsmith also has served as the executive director of the Center for the Living City, a non-profit organization that inspires civic engagement and leadership, and invites creative solutions to community challenges.  

Dennis Fraise and Jason Hutcheson, hosts of the Develop This! Economic & Community Development podcast, are seasoned economic development professionals with versatile combined backgrounds. 

Jeffon Seely, is a senior consultant, transformational speaker and workshop facilitator. Seely speaks about subjects that are at the forefront of our thinking and is a highly recognized leading resource in the field of diversity and inclusion, millennials, mindfulness and leadership. Seely is a frequent contributor to news organizations, podcasts and blogs and is a TEDx speaker. 

Jay Salinas from the Wormfarm Institute, an evolving laboratory of the arts and ecology and fertile ground for creative work. With the mission to integrate culture and agriculture, Wormfarm’s work brings together farming, conservation and the arts to rekindle cultural expression and enhance the economic possibilities of our region while celebrating its unique natural and human history. 

In addition to featured speakers, the summit also will feature special guest appearances from North Dakota musician Jessie Veeder and North Dakota’s official state troubadour Chuck Suchy. 

Additional summit information and registration can be found at https://msnd.link/2020.  

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