Economists, strategists and an Olympic medalist are all on their way to Grande Prairie. They will be three of 13 speakers at next year’s Growing the North Conference. Organizing Committee Spokesperson Tom Pura says those 13 come from a wide variety of industries and backgrounds.

“We have anywhere from an Olympic medalist in Jon Montgomery to a vice president from Eastlink Dan MacDonald. We have an Economist Pierre Cléroux and we’re very excited to have Chief Clarence Louie coming to speak about Indigenous economic development. It is truly a variety of speakers that we are very excited about.”

Growing the North is a conference that was started by the County of Grande Prairie in 2010. It gives leaders and business people from across the province the chance to get together and hear about innovation and economic development opportunities in the B.C. and Alberta Peace region.

Pura hopes to see around 400 to 500 people at the conference. He says he wants them to leave the event looking at the economy in a different way.

“It’s about giving people a chance to take a look as we call it from 20,000 feet at the economy as a whole in this region and how it’s affected by events outside this area. These speakers are coming in and bringing some of that information letting people know that this is what’s going.”

Other speakers expected include; Entrepreneur Jay Baer, Producer Jim Barr, Co-Founder of Cultural Dynamics Inc. Hugh Evans, AgNition Inc. Partner Peter Gredig, Strategist Shawn Kanungo, Speakers Joanne Leskow and Curtis Weber, Tool Shed Brewing Company Co-Owner Graham Sherman and Professor Kristof Van Assche. Pura says one more speaker will still need to be locked in which he says should be done shortly.

The conference will be held at Evergreen Park from February 20th to the 21st, 2019. Tickets are still available and can be purchased on Growing the North’s website or by calling 780-532-5340.