2016 Future of North Carolina Forum

December 6, 2016

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Presented by:



Accelerating North Carolina’s Future > North Carolina expects to add nearly 3 million people between now and 2030. If that happens, North Carolina will become the seventh most populous state in the country. It begs the question: Are We Ready? Do we have the necessary infrastructure in place? Enough clean water? And will job growth keep pace with the growth of our population? As one of our state’s most important leaders, please join us for an engaged discussion on securing North Carolina’s future.

Get engaged: #FutureofNC


What: 2016 Future of North Carolina Forum
When: Tuesday, December 6 | 8:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Where: The Umstead Hotel and Spa | 100 Woodland Pond Dr. | Cary, NC 27513 (Complimentary valet service available)
Special Hotel Rate: Embassy Suites by Hilton Raleigh Durham Research Triangle for $149 expires at 5:00 pm on November 5 | Call 1-800-EMBASSY to book
(Embassy is Across the street from the Umstead)

Registration and Sponsorships


This exclusive, Invitation-only event will address those questions and will help find ways to use our collective influence to shape our future by leading on a number of initiatives critical to our state’s prosperity.

Your business has made a tremendous investment in North Carolina and we know that you are deeply interested in our state’s future. Please register today to join us this December. In the meantime, thank you for helping to make North Carolina a great place for business.

This is an invite-only, ticketed event designed for executive level professionals and will not be open to the public.

Draft Agenda

7:30 – 8:25 a.m.

8:25 – 8:30 a.m.
Opening Remarks
Mr. Dale Jenkins, CEO, Medical Mutual

8:30 – 9:15 a.m.
Opening Keynote
Mr. Jim Whitehurst, President and CEO, Red Hat

The Open Organization – The Open Organization is for leaders who want to create business environments that can respond quickly in today’s fast-paced world. It’s for those who want to encourage the best ideas, hear honest advice, and attract (and retain) the brightest talent. In this opening keynote, Jim Whitehurst, CEO of the largest open source software company in the world and author of “The Open Organization: Igniting Passion and Performance,” will discuss how open principles of management—based on transparency, participation, and community—reinvent the organization for the fast-paced connected era.

9:15 – 10:00 a.m.
Infrastructure and Growth
Mr. Jule Smith, President, Fred Smith Company
Mr. Louis Renjel, Vice President of Strategic Infrastructure, CSX Transportation
Ms. Rondi Furgason, Vice President of Operations, CenturyLink
Mr. Ward Nye, Chairman of the Board, President and CEO, Martin Marietta
Mr. Ted Abernathy, Managing Partner, Economic Leadership LLC (Moderator)

This session will include a sober assessment of where North Carolina stands on infrastructure as it relates to its rapid growth. Significant investments in infrastructure are happening, but is it enough?

10:00 – 10:15 a.m.
Active Break

10:15 – 11:00 a.m.
Education and Talent Supply
Dr. Randy Woodson, Chancellor, NC State University
Dr. James “Jimmie” Williamson, President, NC Community College System
Ms. Melanie Sanders, Producer & Media Trainer, Greenroom Communications (Moderator)

Business and education leaders often talk about collaboration. This session will focus on what each party really needs; where expectations are being met and falling short. Audience participation is encouraged as well.

11:00 – 11:45 a.m.
Economic Outlook for North Carolina
Dr. Michael Walden, William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor, North Carolina State University
Mr. Mark Vitner, Managing Director and Senior Economist, Wells Fargo
Mr. Ted Abernathy, Managing Partner, Economic Leadership LLC (Moderator)

11:45 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Lunch and Keynote.The Generational Disruption of Leadership: Boomers Up, No Excuse
Mr. Chuck Underwood, The Generational Imperative, Inc.

Why did America soar to such noble and visionary world leadership for a few decades after World War Two… and then plummet to such global disappointment and domestic shame during the 1990s and 2000s… but now today, stand once again at the front door of a potentially magnificent leadership era… if only the generation that is now determining America’s fate and future will undo the mess it has inherited… and live up to its generational promise, made decades ago during a turbulent time, to one day deliver the highest ethical principles, boldness of vision, and compassion for the less fortunate to their beloved nation, which gave them such a special opportunity. As it turns out, the problem was generational. As it turns out, the solution is generation. Here is The Missing Piece….

1:15 – 1:45 p.m.
Progress Update: North Carolina Vision 2030
Mr. Lew Ebert, President and CEO, North Carolina Chamber

1:45 – 2:30 p.m.
Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Mr. Chuck Howard, CEO, Autobell Car Wash, Inc.
Ms. Benji Jones, Partner, Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan, LLP
Melanie Sanders, Producer & Media Trainer, Greenroom Communications (Moderator)

Vision 2030 imagines a state that not only attracts companies to relocate but also a place where businesses are born. In this session, you will hear about significant home-grown successes and a true assessment of what North Carolina does well and how we can get better.

2:30 p.m.
Closing Remarks

Continuing Education Credit

The North Carolina Chamber is committed to providing high-quality, experience-based education programs to our attendees. The number of continuing education credits attendees earn are determined by the number and length of the sessions they attend, based on a 50-minute hour. Attendees who complete a sign-in form onsite will be provided with a certificate indicating the number of credit hours to be awarded.

5.5 Hours

Live Group Study



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