The annual Next Generation Conference, held at the W Atlanta Midtown from July 29th to the 31st, brought together those new to the industry and those looking to mentor the younger generation of shopping center professionals for education, mentoring and networking opportunities.
The conference began on Sunday, July 29th with a day chock full of networking events at some of Atlanta’s top attractions. Attendees watched the Atlanta Braves take on the Philadelphia Phillies, while beating the heat in the 755 Club, which provided breathtaking panoramic views of Turner Field and the Atlanta skyline. Those attending the conference also had the option of visiting the Georgia Aquarium, the largest aquarium in the world, and the World of Coke Museum, where they could sample over 100 flavors of the brand’s beverages!
Later that evening, attendees gathered in the Living Room, the cool swanky bar at the W Atlanta Midtown, to socialize and sip cocktails before turning in to get a good night’s rest for the conference kick-off the next morning.
Monday was a full day of educational programming and networking sessions, giving all the attendees the opportunity to engage in the conversation. The General Session that morning combined all three elements of “Next Gen” when attendees broke off into teams to compete for the best terms of valuating a shopping center. Afterwards, attendees made their way to the Art of Networking and Speed networking sessions, allowing everyone to really collaborate and get to know one another.
The highlight of Monday afternoon was our lunch time speakers, which included the Honorable Mayor Kasim Reed giving the Outlook for Retail Real Estate in Atlanta; the CEO and President of Jones Lang LaSalle, Greg Maloney, giving the Keynote Presentation; and our ICSC Chairman, Brad Hutensky, giving the Industry Update.
Lunch was followed by a series of Concurrent Sessions, which included topics such as International Expansion, Development and Redevelopment in the post-recession era, Restaurant Deal Negotiations, and New Mobile Technologies. We finished up Monday evening with our Member Hosted Reception and several Dine Arounds.
Tuesday was a morning packed full of industry driven activities, delving into pertinent challenges and issues in today’s industry and political climate. A slam dunk General Session with live polling on Sales Tax Fairness included Adrielle Churchill, Staff for U.S. Representative Steve Womack (AR-3); Heather Kennedy, Director of Government Relations for The Home Depot; Ernie Pomerleau, President of Pomerleau Real Estate; and The Honorable Matt Ramsey, Georgia State Representative.
The conference commenced with the Executive Boardroom Sessions, where top executives shared their experiences and expertise with attendees. These sessions were led by:David Birnbrey, Chairman and Co-CEO of The Shopping Center Group; Anthony F. Buono, SCSM, Executive Managing Director of CBRE; Charlie Hendon, President of Hendon Properties, LLC; Brad Hutensky, ICSC Chairman, President and Principal of Hutensky Capital Partners; and Gary Rappaport, SCMD, SCSM, SCLS, SCDP, ICSC Past Chairman and Past State Director, and President of The Rappaport Companies.
ICSC would like to thank all of our speakers, sponsors, and attendees for making this event such a great success! Special thanks to our Conference Program Planning Committee, our Atlanta Next Generation Host Committee, and Conference Co-Chairs, Jordan Claffey and Geoffry Brouman, for their hard work and dedication. See you all next year!
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