Iowa Ideas
Iowa Ideas

To provide a nonpartisan, statewide learning experience

designed to explore the key questions and big ideas that will shape the future of Iowa.

Iowa Ideas

Iowa Ideas Conference tickets on sale

This year's event to host some 200 panelists

Feb 14, 2019 at 5:57 pm
    Iowa Workforce Development Director Beth Townsend delivers remarks during a keynote forum moderated by Zack Kucharski, Executive Editor of the Gazette (far left) at the second annual Iowa Ideas conference at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cedar Rapids Convention Complex on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018. Keynote speakers also included Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise (second from left) and Iowa Economic Development Authority Director Debi Durham. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

    CEDAR RAPIDS — Tickets are on sale for The Gazette’s third Iowa Ideas Conference, set for Oct. 3 and 4, an annual two-day gathering of government and business leaders, educators, economists and other concerned Iowans to discuss issues vital to the state.

    The 2019 event, set for the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cedar Rapids Convention Complex in downtown Cedar Rapids, will feature 11 themed tracks with some 200 panelists.

    This year’s themes will be:

    • Agriculture

    • Diversity and inclusion

    • Education

    • Energy and environment

    • Health care

    • Human and social services

    • Infrastructure

    • Policy

    • Regional development

    • Workforce

    • Young professional

    “We continue to expand and make new connections to help plan this event,” Executive Editor Zack Kucharski said Thursday.

    “We’ve been working with advisory councils consisting of experts and leaders from around the state in building the most engaging panels possible. The ideas and the interactions have been fascinating, and will make the third conference our most exciting yet.”

    Individual sessions for the conference will be announced in coming weeks, he said.

    Tickets can be purchased at A limited number of tickets are available at $100, half the regular conference price, on a first-come basis.

    The conference will include lunch, a keynote speaker, networking opportunities and a Pints & Politics session at Theatre Cedar Rapids. Last year’s event saw more than 500 attendees.

    The Iowa Ideas initiative, which includes the conference, electronic newsletters and five glossy magazines published throughout the year, received the Iowa Newspaper Foundation’s Bill Monroe Innovation Award in 2018.

    ITC Midwest will be the presenting sponsor and will offer, along with The Gazette, a limited number of scholarships for K-12 and higher education. Deadline is May 31 to apply at

    Also new for 2019, the conference has been recognized by the Society for Human Resources Management for professional development credits for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.

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