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Business, economic leaders keynote 2012 summit

POSTED September 25, 2012 5:35 p.m.

The fifth year of the Turlock Chamber of Commerce Business Leadership Summit could be the best yet.

The annual business summit will feature two keynote speakers this Oct. 10, including the President and CEO of the California Chamber of Commerce and a former top economic advisor on both the state and federal level.

“It’s really about economy and dollars,” said Turlock Chamber of Commerce CEO Sharon Silva.

Breakfast keynote speaker Lon Hatamiya formerly served as Secretary of the California Technology, Trade, and Commerce Agency – the state’s primary agency for economic development and job creation. Hatamiya will bring his experience to bear at the summit, discussing the future of the economy and how local businesses should plan.

Following Hatamiya, a breakout session will see three luminaries on different types of funding – government, bank, and angel investing – discuss the future of business financing. Among the speakers is Mark Plovnick, the Director of Economic Development for the University of the Pacific and President of the San Joaquin Angels investing group.

“Funding has been really difficult for our businesses,” Silva said. “We want to provide a venue where they can get info about the different types of funding available.”

Then, speaking at lunch, comes perhaps the biggest name of the summit: Allan Zaremberg, the President and CEO of the California Chamber of Commerce. The talk, expected to cover the upcoming elections and the economy, marks Zaremberg’s first visit to Turlock, and a rare trip to the local level for the supremely-busy executive.

“This is really unheard of,” Silva said. “It’s very exciting to have him.”

After lunch, one last breakout session helmed by consultant Michael Loschke will discuss how entrepreneurs can build their businesses like Warren Buffett.

All those speakers will visit a new venue for the Business Leadership Summit this year – the Assyrian American Civic Club of Turlock. In past years, the summit has been held at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds.

Despite the change in venue, the summit will still include a Business Expo in addition to speakers and breakout sessions. The Expo allows businesses to showcase their offerings, and to network with other businesses and members of the public.

The new, smaller venue will see fewer business booths than a year ago – between 38 and 40, compared to the 45 to 48 in 2011. Though the number has decreased, the quality has increased, Silva said.

“The booths are superior this year,” Silva said. “They’re just great businesses that are coming in to showcase.”

The summit will be held from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Oct. 10, at the Assyrian American Civic Club of Turlock, 2618 N. Golden State Blvd.

General admission, full-day tickets are $75. Half-day tickets, good for either from 8 a.m. to noon or from noon to 5 p.m., are $50. Luncheon keynote tickets are $25. Student tickets are $20. Expo-only tickets are $10.

For more information, or to purchase a ticket, call 632-2221.

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