GLADWIN COUNTY – The Gladwin County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) would like to invite local shoppers and retailers to two upcoming events featuring nationally-recognized local business expert Kimber Lanning on March 26 at Riverwalk Place in Gladwin. The events are geared toward educating shoppers and retailers on the importance of growing our local economy by supporting the businesses in our communities.
From 8:30-10:30 a.m., local retailers and business associations are invited to the morning session: “How to Leverage our Localness.” This session is designed to strengthen small businesses by providing tips on how to become more competitive and successful in a rapidly changing world.
During this two-hour presentation, Lanning will explain how our communities can collaborate to build self-reliance and strengthen our local economy. Attendees will learn how the economy actually works, and gain insight into how to inclusively retain wealth in our communities.
From 5:30-6:30 p.m. at Riverwalk Place, Lanning will focus on how our buying habits make a big difference in the success of our community in the session: “The Economy is ours to Own.” Shoppers are invited to hear Lanning explain how American consumers are driving the economy, and how the way we spend our money matters in our communities.
Kimber Lanning is Founder and Executive Director of Local First Arizona, a statewide organization implementing innovative strategies for new models of economic development that create vibrant local economies. Lanning is an entrepreneur, business leader and community development specialist who works to cultivate strong self-reliant communities and inspire a higher quality of life for people across Arizona. Lanning’s passions, which are seen throughout her work, include fostering cultural diversity and inclusion, economic resilience and responsible growth for Arizona.
Lanning has grown Local First Arizona into a widely respected organization that is leading the nation in implementing systems and policies to ensure a level playing field for entrepreneurial endeavors of all sizes. With nearly 3,000 business members and four statewide offices, Lanning leads a team of 17 who work on a diverse array of programs ranging from healthy local food access, entrepreneurial development in underserved communities, and rural community development, each of which plays a part in building sustainable and resilient local economies.
Lanning is consistently recognized and has received numerous awards for her diverse work and extensive leadership. In 2014, Lanning was recognized as the Citizen Leader of the Year by the International Economic Development Council, a pivotal moment in recognizing the use of Localist policies as a force for economic development. Her work in promoting adaptive reuse in Phoenix’s urban core was recognized by the American Planning Association, who presented Lanning with the Distinguished Citizen Planner Award in 2013. Lanning has also been named one of the “50 Most Influential Women in Arizona” (Arizona Business Magazine, 2011), was the recipient of the Athena Award by the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce in 2013, and was the 2014 Leader of the Year in Public Policy (Arizona Capitol Times).