Senator Bob Bennett, in conjunction with the Utah Rural Development Council, will host the Fourth Annual Rural Business Conference at the College of Eastern Utah in Price on May 3 and 4.
"Economic growth in rural Utah will be driven by homegrown development, with the local entrepreneur providing the vision and innovation that will fuel economic success," said Bennett. "My hope is that this conference will provide information, tools, and valuable contacts to assist rural business leaders and community officials in their efforts to strengthen local economies."
Gov. Jon Huntsman, Jr. will keynote the conference's breakfast session. Prior to his election as Utah's governor in 2004, Huntsman held several leadership positions with Huntsman Corporation, most recently as chairman and CEO of its holding company. He has also served the United States government in several commerce and trade development positions and was the U.S. ambassador to Singapore.
The luncheon keynote address will be offered by Dr. Patrick M. Byrne, chairman of the board and president of Overstock.com, a Utah-based online liquidator. Overstock.com has become an e-commerce leader by reselling excess inventory from manufacturers, distributors, importers, retailers and catalog companies. Dr. Byrne is also the general partner of High Plains Investments LLC, an investment company located in Park City, and considers himself an investor by trade.
Bennett, a former Inc. Magazine regional entrepreneur of the year, will speak on small business growth during the breakfast session and will host discussions on government economic development efforts during other sessions of the conference.
Breakout sessions will focus on specific areas of interest to rural entrepreneurs including access to business capital, finding and retaining quality employees, surviving in a cyclical business climate, online and traditional marketing, and more.
Corporate sponsors for the conference include, ATK Aerospace, Deseret Certified Development Company, Emery Telcom, Hunt Oil Company, Utah Power, Utah Rural Electric Association, Western AgCredit, Sun Advocate, Emery County Progress, Utah Department of Commerce, Bill Barrett Corporation, Central Utah Telephone, Eastern Utah Community Credit Union, Fannie Mae, USDA Rural Development, and Utah Rural Telecom Association.
Attendance at the event is $20 and includes the May 3 reception, and breakfast, lunch and all conference sessions on May 4.
For information visit www.ruralutah.com, or call (801) 851-2525