Keynoter announced for Outlook Conference

Rebecca Neipp

News Review Staff Writer

Keynoter announced for Outlook  ConferenceDetails are emerging for this year’s Indian Wells Valley Economic Outlook Conference — historically the most significant IWV gathering of leaders from the community, county and base, who give an annual report on challenges and opportunities ahead.

The Ridgecrest Chamber of Commerce presents the event each year to offer local businesses and members of the community an opportunity to network and share information. This year’s conference will be held Thursday, Feb. 23, in the Kerr McGee Center starting at 7 a.m.

Keynote speaker this year will be Scott O’Neil, the new executive director for the IWV Economic Development Corp. and the China Lake Alliance.

O’Neil brings to his new roles contacts and experience from more than 40 years at China Lake, the last 11 of which he spent as the former executive director of Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division. As the lead of the EDC, O’Neil is focused on recruiting compatible businesses to the valley. For the CLA, he helps advocate for political and logistical support for the mission on the base.

Other invited speakers include NAWCWD Commander Rear Adm. Brian Corey, NAWCWD Executive Director Joan Johnson and Naval Air Weapons Station Commanding Officer Capt. Paul Dale.

Ridgecrest Regional Hospital CEO Jim Suver is expected to discuss the hospital’s new partnership with the U.C. Davis Cancer Care Network, which will expandoncology services to residents of the IWV and beyond.

Clint Freeman of Coldwell Banker Best Realty will report on real estate trends and data.

“One of the ways we help you in planning your business’s future direction is to keep you informed,” said Janis Bottorff, chair of the chamber board of directors.

“The Economic Outlook Con-ference and Business Expo is a great opportunity to learn what some of the major employers in our community anticipate and foresee for the upcoming year — which could impact your business.”

Tickets are $40 each for chamber members and $50 each for nonmembers.

Sponsorship opportunities, exhi-bits and reserved tables are available.

For more information call 760-375-8331.

Story First Published: 2017-02-10