Speaker recap for 2013 Business Outlook Conference

Outlook Speaker Recap

LANCASTER – With ticket sales stimulated by an all-star speaker lineup, the Friday, Feb. 22 Antelope Valley Business Outlook Conference is on track to break attendance records.

Drew Mercy, president of the Antelope Valley Board of Trade, which organizes this year’s 41st annual AV Business Outlook Conference, said the deadline for conference ticket reservations is 5 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Business Outlook Conference Chairman Scott Cummings reported that public interest in the conference appears especially strong this year, in part because of concerns about the economy, “and perhaps to a greater extent because of the all-star lineup of presenters. “

American Army wounded warrior, turned actor, author and “Dancing With the Stars” celebrity winner JR Martinez will deliver the inspirational keynote address, stressing the Outlook Conference theme, Freedom to Succeed.

An equally sought-after speaker on the program will be Costco Wholesale president and chief executive officer Craig Jelinek, a former Antelope Valley resident who joined Costco in 1984 as the manager of its sixth location. He has long been cited as a key player in the rise of one of the world’s most successful retailers. He assumed the role of CEO in January 2012.

The always popular regional economic forecast focusing on Northern Los Angeles and Southeastern Kern counties will be delivered by Bill Watkins, executive director of the Center for Economic Research and Forecasting at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks.

Conference attendees will also be first to receive the new annual Antelope Valley Economic Roundtable Report, packed with the most recent economic data.

For a complete list of scheduled speakers from business, industry and government visit www.avbot.org.

The Business Outlook Conference will be held on Friday, Feb. 22 in the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds, just off the SR 14 Freeway at Avenue H in Lancaster.

Doors will open at 7:30 a.m. for conference registration and continental breakfast. The program begins at 8 a.m. and adjourns at 2:30 p.m.  Lunch is included.

For ticket reservations call the AV Board of Trade office at 661-942-9581.