As of August 20 Information will be updated often, check back soon.

Friday, September 6

8:30 am – 11:30 am Southern States Energy Board (SSEB) Associate Members Meeting
9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Southern Growth Policies Board Conference: Re-imagining Workforce Development

9:00 am         Welcome and Presentation of the 2013 Report on the
                        Future of the South
Ted Abernathy, Executive Director, Southern Growth
                        Policies Board

                       Chris Masingill, Federal Co-Chair, Delta Regional

9:45 am        The Role of Business in Workforce

                       Tom Volta, Vice President, Human Resources, UPS
                       Air Group

10:30 am         Break

11:00 am       The State of the U.S. Workforce System
                        Kathy Krepcio, Executive Director, Heldrich Center
                        for Workforce Development, Rutgers University and
                        author of The State of the U.S. Workforce System:
                        Time for Incremental Realignment or Serious


12:00 pm       The Future of Higher Education
                        Jeffrey Selingo, Editor-at-Large for the Chronicle of
                        Higher Education
and author of College (Un)bound

1:30 pm         The Future of Higher Education: The Public's
Jean Johnson, Public Agenda

2:00 pm        Building Resilient Workers
                       Doug Henton, CEO Collaborative Economics and
                       author of The Cornerstones of Economic Security
                       for Resilient Workers

2:45 pm          Break

3:00 pm        Panel: State Workforce Development Leaders
                       Facilitator:  Ted Abernathy, Executive Director,
                       Southern Growth Policies Board
                       Thomas Zawacki, Secretary, Kentucky
                       Education and Workforce Development Council

                       Andres Alcantar, Chairman, Texas Workforce

                       Russell Fry, Acting Executive Director, WorkForce
                       West Virginia

                       Andy Moser, President/CEO, Maryland Workforce

                       Mickey Hutto, Supervisor, Workforce Investment,
                       Alabama Department of Economic and Community

                       Burns Phillips, Commissioner, Tennessee Department
                       of Labor and Workforce Development

State workforce development leaders will react to the themes presented earlier in the day and discuss what they think are the most important workforce development trends, what their states are doing to respond to these trends, and the challenges and opportunities they see for the future.

4:30 pm          Wrap Up and Next Steps

5:00 pm          Adjourn

12:00 pm – 5:30 pm

SGA Golf Outing Tournament
Advanced registration required.  Space is limited.
Quail Chase Golf Club

6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

SGA Welcome Reception
All attendees

7:00 pm – 8:00 pm Host Committee Reception
(By invitation only)

Saturday, September 7

10:00 am Opening Ceremonies
10:15 am – 11:00 am Business Session:  Understanding the Manufacturing Resurgence

What is really driving the revival of US manufacturing, particularly throughout the American South? This annual meeting will explore everything from taxes and regulation, energy, and workforce skills, to infrastructure, and innovation. We kick off the weekend’s business with a private sector perspective on what governors should consider when making policy decisions aimed at maintaining and growing the region’s manufacturing sector.


Charles "Chip" Blankenship
President and Chief Executive Officer
GE Home & Business Solutions

11:00 am – 12:15 pm

Business Session:  Energy Policies Impacting Manufacturing

Energy policies and pricing have a direct impact on manufacturers’ bottom line and thus their decisions to site, expand and/or relocate their facilities. Governors will explore how current energy trends and policies may affect their efforts to grow and strengthen manufacturing in the American South.


Karen Alderman Harbert
President and CEO
U.S. Chamber Institute for 21st Century Energy

Michael A. Levi
David M. Rubenstein Senior Fellow for Energy and the Environment and
Director, Program on Energy Security and Climate Change
Council on Foreign Relations

James Slutz
President and Managing Director
Global Energy Strategies, LLC


12:30 pm – 1:45 pm

Luncheon: Impacts of International Trade and Investment on Manufacturing in the U.S.


Leslie Griffin
Senior Vice President, International Public Policy

Nancy L. McLernon
President and Chief Executive Officer
Organization for International Investment

1:45 pm – 2:00 pm Break
2:00 pm – 3:15 pm

Business Session: Achieving Economic Growth Through Exports, Supply Chains and Innovation Ecosystems

Small and medium-sized manufacturers dominate the industrial landscape, thus, presenting significant opportunities for economic growth with the right mix of policy supports. Governors will explore how state government can help maximize exports, connect small businesses to the supply chain of larger manufacturers and further develop the region’s innovation ecosystem.


Page Siplon
Executive Director
Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics

Phillip Singerman
Associate Director for Innovation and Industry Services
National Institute of Standards and Technology

Suzanne Berger
Raphael Dorman-Helen Starbuck Professor of Political Science
Co-chair, Production in the Innovation Economy Project
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

3:15 pm – 3:30 pm Business Session: A Private Sector Perspective on Innovation

The ability to innovate is the key to survival for businesses of all sizes. The day’s discussion will be capped off with one company’s approach to innovating its business model, with an emphasis on how state government policy impacted its decisions and ability to adapt.


R.G. Conlee
SVP, Chief Innovation Officer, Corporate

3:30 pm – 3:45 pm Press Availability
6:30 pm – 9:30 pm An Evening at the Kentucky Derby: Reception and Casual Dinner
(All attendees)

Kentucky Governor and First Lady Steve and Jane Beshear welcome you to a special evening at the Kentucky Derby Museum. Sitting on the front steps of historic Churchill Downs, the Museum offers its visitors a first hand look at the event for which Louisville, Kentucky, is known worldwide. Tour the museum, enjoy the favorite foods served during Derby week, listen to some Bluegrass music and taste varieties of our spirit of choice - Kentucky bourbon.
7:30 pm – 9:30 pm Governors and Founders Dinner
(By invitation only)
10:00 pm – 12:00 am Arkansas Late Night Reception
(All attendees)

Sunday, September 8

8:30 am - 9:00 am

Continental Breakfast Available

9:00 am – 10:30 am

Business Session:  Building the Talent Pipeline

A majority of manufacturers of all sizes consistently say they have trouble finding skilled workers to fill positions ranging from engineering to skilled production. Governors will explore state strategies for improving career readiness, increasing interest in manufacturing careers, and developing effective partnerships between government, employers and the educational community build the talent pipeline among all age groups.


Stefanie Sanford
Chief, Global Policy & Advocacy
The College Board

Gardner Carrick
Vice President of Strategic Initiatives
Manufacturing Institute

Mike Price
Vice President of Administration and Secretary
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc.

Laura Knapp
Director, National Center for Innovation in Career
  and Technical Education
RTI International

10:30 am – 10:45 am Break
10:45 am – 12:00 pm

Business Session: Addressing the Diabetes Epidemic

As Southern governors work to ensure the availability of a ready workforce, so too will they have to confront the growing prevalence of diabetes and other chronic diseases that undermine the region’s productivity. Panelists will discuss policy approaches that can support efforts to address this challenge.


Audrey Tayse Haynes
Secretary of Health and Family Services
Commonwealth of Kentucky

Marti Macchi, MEd., MPH
Senior Consultant for Diabetes
National Association of Chronic Disease Directors

Tara Dall, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer
Health Diagnostic Laboratory, Inc.


12:00 pm – 12:15 pm Break
12:15 pm – 1:30 pm Luncheon: A Private Sector Perspective on Health and Wellness


Deb Moessner
President and General Manager
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kentucky

1:30 pm – 1:45 pm Break
1:45 pm – 3:00 pm

Business Session: Maintaining the Competetiveness of the Region's Infrastructure Assets

The region’s logistics assets are critical determinants of our long-term competitiveness as a hub of manufacturing activity. Governors will explore key issues impacting these assets that determine manufacturers’ ability to reach both domestic and international markets, including surface transportation, airports and shipping ports, and broadband.


Sean T. Connaughton
Secretary of Transportation
Commonwealth of Virginia

Major General Michael J. Walsh
Deputy Commanding General, Civil and Emergency Operations
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Tom Ferree
President and COO
Connected Nation


3:00 pm – 3:30 pm Press Availability
6:30 pm – 10:00 pm SGA Reception and State Dinner
Muhammad Ali Center
(All attendees)

SGA’s State Dinner will be held at yet another of Louisville’s iconic venues – The Muhammad Ali Center. Ali’s success as a boxer is widely respected but his greatest triumph lies in his legacy as a champion, leader, humanitarian, and artist, which is celebrated in this award-winning museum. Following a reception and tour, Southern governors and first spouses will host attendees for a seated dinner on the museum’s top floor, overlooking the Ohio River. Entertainment will feature graduates of the Kentucky Center Governor’s School for the Arts, followed by after-dinner music and dancing.

 Monday, September 9

8:00 am – 9:15 am Governors' Economic Development Officials Breakfast
(By invitation only)
8:30 am – 9:30 am Continental Breakfast Available
9:30 am –11:30 am

Creating a Regional Manufacturing Action Plan – A Roundtable Discussion

Representatives of the region’s manufacturing councils will participate with governors in a moderated dialog about the value of a regional approach to supporting the manufacturing renaissance in the American South.


Stephen V. Gold
President and CEO
Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI)

Report Authors:

Cliff Waldman
Senior Economist, Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity
and Innovation

Matthew N. Murray, Ph.D
Director, Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy
University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Private Sector Panelists:

Ronald W. Boles
Co-Chairman, Business Council
Alabama Manufacturing Advocacy Council

Randy Zook
President and CEO
Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and
   Associated Industries of Arkansas

Al Stimac
Manufacturers Association of Florida

Greg Higdon
President and Chief Executive Officer
Kentucky Association of Manufacturers

Jay C. Moon
President and CEO
Mississippi Manufacturers Association

Ray McCarty
Associated Industries of Missouri

Jaime L. Garcia
Executive Director
Puerto Rico Manufacturers Association

Catherine Glover
Tennessee Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Brett A. Vassey
President and CEO
Virginia Manufacturers Association

Public Sector Panelists:

Grant Tennille
Executive Director
Arkansas Economic Development Commission

Larry Hayes
Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development

Alberto Bacó Bagué
Puerto Rico Department of Economic
Development and Commerce

Bill Hagerty
Tennessee Economic and Community Development

Christopher A. Masingill
Federal Co-Chair
Delta Regional Authority

Ted Abernathy
Executive Director
Southern Growth Policies Board

11:30 am – 11:45 am Closing Ceremonies
11:45 am – 12:00 pm Closing Press Conference