MBEP: Catalyzing Community Well-Being
By Kate Roberts
Monterey Bay Economic Partnership, President
Special to Santa Cruz Tech Beat
October 26, 2016 — Santa Cruz, CA
During this crazy election season, it’s easy to feel discouraged by all the rhetoric and general peculiarity of this election. No matter what happens on November 8th, there’s an opportunity to generate and share positive energy at the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership’s Second Annual State of the Region Conference on December 1, 2016, at the Embassy Suites in Seaside. Our theme this year is “Catalyzing Community Well-Being.”
How will you tap into the positive energy I’m talking about? You’ll be surrounded by folks who care about this region and are engaged in making a difference, whether they are employers contributing to our local economy, city staff working to enhance public policy, or nonprofit and community leaders involved in education, social and environmental programs striving to improve our communities.
We also have amazing speakers that will open (and maybe blow!) your mind with innovative and real solutions that our region and other communities around the state and country are implementing today. When it comes to using technology to connect our youth to well-paying jobs, or finding creative housing solutions, or fixing to our transportation woes, you’ll hear about state-of-the-art solutions being implemented now. Have you ever heard the phrase “housing as healthcare?” Well, you’ll get to meet the doctor that coined it and learn how this approach is changing lives. And there are some exciting things happening with the rivers in our region – you’ll get to hear experts discuss how we can activate these resources while ensuring their protection. Health care is undergoing a rapid transformation, and we’ll be discussing all the impacts on whole person health. MBEP is all about finding innovative solutions and both partnering and taking action to help our region thrive. We’ll share some of the innovative ways this is already happening and some inspiring food-for-thought for 2017.
You’ll get the first look at a new web-based regional tool that will be unveiled to help us track progress against the key metrics for a thriving region. We say we need 10,000 new houses to meet our housing crunch, but how are we actually doing against that goal? You’ll have to come to the State of the Region and find out! And we have some special keynote speakers—Governor Jerry Brown, to give us an update on the Well-Being of California, and Secretary of Natural Resources John Laird.
You’ll also be able to talk to our Marketplace participants, nonprofits such as Opportunity Fund (small business loans), Digital NEST (tech training for youth) and Santa Cruz Works (tech scene connector) among others. If all that doesn’t tempt you, maybe the wine reception following our interesting and interactive day will! Wineries from the tri-county area will be pouring delicious wines as you mingle with the who’s who of our region.