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Accelerate Upstate schedule

The following is the schedule for the Accelerate Upstate conference on Aug. 4 and Aug. 5 at various sites in the Buffalo Niagara region.

For information on registration, including discounts on advance signups, Click here. 

Day 1 - Aug. 4

Noon – 1:00    Welcome and Opening Remarks (lunch)
Location: Buffalo Niagara Convention Center
Welcome: Andrew Rudnick - President & CEO, Buffalo Niagara Partnership
Keynote Speaker - Kenneth Adams, President &  CEO, Empire State Development
1:30 – 3:00       Concurrent Sessions/Workshops
“What Motivates Us – The unique conditions in NYC and Upstate”


Location: Hyatt Regency Buffalo
Identifying the business, social and political drivers metro NYC and Upstate – and how do we make state policy that helps both?
Moderator: Lawrence Meckler - Of Counsel, Jaeckle, Fleischmann & Mugel, LLP
Confirmed speakers: Brian Sampson - Executive Director, Unshackle Upstate; Kathy Wylde - President & CEO, Partnership for NYC; E.J. McMahon - Senior Fellow, Manhattan Institute; Amy Allen - Managing Director, Advocacy and International Business, The Westchester County Association
 “Our Connection with Canada”
Location: HSBC Tower
What does collaboration with the northern side of the border mean to New York’s economy? What actions can Albany take to strengthen the relationship between New York, Ontario and Quebec?
Confirmed speaker: Kevin Johnson - U.S. Consul General, Toronto; Marta Moszczenska - Canadian Consul General, Buffalo; James Manno - Chairman, Council for Supply Chain Management Professionals WNY Chapter; Guy Gessner, PhD - Associate Professor of Management and Marketing, Canisius College
3:30 – 5:00      Concurrent Sessions/Workshops
“Big City: Bigger State – Best practices from other states facing an 800-pound gorilla”
Location: Buffalo & Erie County Public Library (downtown)
New York is not the only state that is dominated by a single major metro – how are similar states creating policy that benefits their entire states?
Moderator: Michael Montante, VP, Uniland Development Co.
Confirmed speakers: Bill Flanagan - Executive Vice President, Corporate Relations, Allegheny Conference (Pennsylvania); John Sampson - President & CEO, Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership; Hon Michael W. Frerichs - Illinois State Senator, 52nd District
 “An Education in Education: Higher Ed as an Economic Driver”
Location: Erie Community College - Auditorium
Several governors now have emphasized that a strong SUNY system is essential to the state’s growth – what can be done in New York to help higher education reach its full economic potential, and what happens if we don’t help?
Moderator: Kate Foster - University at Buffalo
Confirmed speakers: Nancy Zimpher - Chancellor, State University of New York (SUNY); John Hurley - President, Canisius College; Dr. Anne Kress - President, Monroe Community College; Rick Jurasek, Ph.D. - President, Medaille College
6:00 – 8:00      Reception
Location: USS Little Rock, Buffalo & Erie County Naval and Military Park

Day 2 - Aug. 5

8:30 – 9:30      Breakfast and Speaker
                          Buffalo Niagara Convention Center
Welcome: Hon. Chris Collins - Erie County Executive
Speaker: John Faso, former NYS gubernatorial candidate, NYS Assemblyman and Buffalo Control Board Member
10:00 – 11:30    Concurrent Sessions/Workshops
“Where’s Our Future Workforce? Who’s Going to be Running New York in 2020?”
Location: Smith Theater
“Brain drain” has already had its impact on the state’s workforce, with key industries looking for skilled employees – what do we need to do to ensure that New York has the appropriate workforce (in number and in skill) for the years ahead?
Moderator: John Darby, President, Niagara Transformer Corp.
Confirmed speakers: Jeff Tredo - Director, Bryant & Stratton (Buffalo region); John Twomey - Executive Director, New York Association of Training and Employment Professionals (NYATEP); Jeremy Cooney - Chairman, “We Live NY”; Michael Moley - Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Catholic Health
 “Jo bs and Investment – What is the right recipe for New York’s economic growth”
Location: Market Arcade 
 How can the various sectors in Upstate work together to create an environment that is fruitful for job creation?
Moderator: Kevin Murphy - Market President, Bank of America
Confirmed speakers: Brian McMahon - Executive Director, New York State Economic Development Council (NYSEDC); Tom Kucharski - President & CEO, Buffalo Niagara Enterprise; Ken Warner - Executive Director, Unions and Businesses United in Construction (UNICON); Christina Orsi - Regional Director, Empire State Development Corporation
10:00 – 11:30    Mayors and County Executives Roundtable
Location: Buffalo Niagara Partnership
A closed-door meeting hosted by City of Buffalo Mayor Brown with Mayors and County Executives from across New York State to discuss challenges, strategies and opportunities
Noon – 1:15    Lunch and keynote speaker
Location: Buffalo Niagara Convention Center
Speaker: Amy Liu - Senior Fellow and Deputy Director, Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program - "Delivering the Next Economy"
1:30 – 2:30       Summary and Next Steps
Location: Buffalo Niagara Convention Center
Summary/compilation of the conversation from the two-day event, identification of key points and themes and outline of next steps: Report issued to Governor, NYS Legislature within 4 weeks of event
Presented by: Garrick Utley - President, SUNY Levin Institute
2:30 – 2:45      Closing and Thank You
Location: Buffalo Niagara Convention Center
Hon. Byron Brown - Mayor, City of Buffalo
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