State chamber to host Economic Summit in Williamsburg Friday

Staff writer

The Virginia Chamber of Commerce will return to the Williamsburg Lodge for its 9th annual Virginia Economic Summit from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. this Friday, Dec. 7.

Hundreds of the state’s business leaders and policy leaders are expected to attend the day-long conference, according to spokesman Brian Coy, including individual businesses, local chambers of commerce and economic development authorities along with state and local policymakers.

This year, the conference is themed around transforming Virginia’s future, and Coy said major topics of discussion are expected to include Amazon’s recent announcement that it will establish a corporate headquarters in the state, as well as making sure all segments of the state’s economy are flourishing, from its urbanized centers to the more rural areas.

“This is their largest convention, and I think that this is their way of getting policy makers and business leaders all in the same room and really focusing discussion on the future of Virginia’s economy,” Coy said.

The conference will feature panel discussions on economic growth and marketing the state as an advantageous place to do business for both new and existing companies.

“There are going to be panels with a good combination of business leaders as well as public officials,” Coy said. “One will be on really examining the value proposition that Virginia offers to businesses that may want to relocate here. The other one will be about how to calibrate the economic development approach to make sure that it's benefiting every economic community, including rural areas, in every corner of the commonwealth.”

Gov. Northam is expected to deliver keynote remarks during the summit’s luncheon. Other confirmed speakers at the Economic Summit are listed as follows:

  • Brian Ball, Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade
  • Tommy Norment, Majority Leader, Senate of Virginia
  • Katherine Rowe, president, College of William and Mary
  • Mark Vitner, managing director and senior economist, Wells Fargo Securities
  • Jennifer Boykin, executive vice president, Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc.and President, Newport News Shipbuilding
  • Ken Sullivan, president and CEO, Smithfield Foods
  • Howard Willard, chairman and CEO, Altria
  • Calvin “Woody” Fowler Jr., president and CEO, Williams Mullen
  • John O. “Dubby” Wynne, chairman, Virginia Growth and Opportunity Board
  • Dave Henderson, president, United States Operations, Commercial and State Government, CGI
  • Evan Feinman, executive director, Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, and chief broadband adviser, Office of Governor Ralph S. Northam
  • Stephen Moret, president and CEO, Virginia Economic Development Partnership
  • Chris Lloyd, senior VP and director, Infrastructure and Economic Development, McGuireWoods Consulting LLC

For more information, visit: vachamber.com/event/2018-virginia-economic-summit.

Arriaza can be reached at 757-790-9313 or on Twitter @rodrigoarriaza0.

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