2018 IN THE GAME has been such an inspirational, educational, and fun event. The event was full of changemakers, big thinkers, and downtown champions. This year we took our conference location back into the mountains in Aspen, and show cased the innovative ideas coming from the community through our speakers, lunches, and tours. As always, our conference differs from most where instead of using the typical formula of session, break, session, etc., we got our participants out of their seats engaging with one another and seeing the City of Aspen first hand. Our theme for this year's conference was "Stewardship, Equity, and Unintended Consequences" where our discussions investigated ensuring that all members of our communities are heard in the process of building stronger communities. Our Colorado Challenge Program was once again very successful, helping the communities of Aspen, Center, Eagle, the Southwest Corridor, and Trinidad. We hope to continue our discussions and collaboration and we can't wait to see you all IN THE GAME in Colorado Springs in 2020!

Photos below are credited to Caleb Alvarado and Keifer Johnson of the National Research Center

Thank you to our Sponsors!

Featuring Keynotes from:

Charles Marohn // Strong Towns

Known as "Chuck" to friends and colleagues - is a Professional Engineer (PE) licensed in the State of Minnesota and a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). Chuck is the founder and president of Strong Towns. He has a Bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Minnesota's Institute of Technology and a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Minnesota's Humphrey Institute. He is the author of Thoughts on Building Strong Towns (Volume 1) and A World Class Transportation System as well as the host of the Strong Towns Podcast and a primary writer for Strong Towns’ web content. He has spoken in dozens of towns and cities across North America, and speaks regularly for diverse audiences and venues. Chuck grew up on a small farm in Central Minnesota. The oldest of three sons of two elementary school teachers, he graduated from Brainerd High School in 1991. Chuck joined the Minnesota National Guard on his 17th birthday during his junior year of high school and served for nine years. Besides being passionate about building a stronger America, he loves playing music, is an obsessive reader and religiously follows his favorite team, the Minnesota Twins. Chuck and his wife live with their two daughters and two Samoyeds just north of Baxter, Minnesota. Learn more about the work of Strong Towns at

Chris Lane // Aspen Center for Environmental Studies

Chris Lane has 25 years of executive environmental management and corporate sustainability experience across varying sectors. Currently, Lane is CEO of Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, a 48-year old nonprofit environmental organization that tackles regional environmental issues around ecological literacy, forest health, sustainable agriculture, land restoration and climate change. Prior to that Lane was vice president of sustainability for Xanterra Parks & Resorts, the country’s largest national park and resort management company where he pioneered the development of environmental management systems in our country’s national parks. Lane served as director of environmental affairs at Aspen Skiing Company. He has consulted with large corporations throughout his career. He has served as an elected official and on the Colorado Governor’s Pollution Prevention Board. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental engineering and is a LEED Accredited Professional and a Certified Environmental Systems Manager. He lives in Basalt with his wife and two kids.

Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler // The Equity Project, LLC.

Dr. Nita Mosby Tyler is the Chief Catalyst and Founder of The Equity Project, LLC – an organization designed to support organizations and communities in building diversity, equity and inclusion strategies. She is the former Senior Vice President and Chief Inclusion Officer for Children’s Hospital Colorado and the former Executive Director of the Office of Human Resources for the City and County of Denver – the first African American woman to hold either of those positions. Dr. Mosby Tyler, a consultant accredited by the Georgetown University National Center for Cultural Competence, is nationally recognized for her equity work with non-profit, community, government and for-profit organizations. Dr. Mosby Tyler has had a strong academic presence in Colorado as a popular guest lecturer at The University of Denver, University of Colorado, Regis University and many other social, political and community organizations. Dr. Mosby-Tyler has a vast, 32-year background in human resources, diversity & inclusion, training and operations management. She has held leadership roles at AT&T, Kaiser Permanente, the McKesson Corporation and Statline. Dr. Mosby Tyler holds a doctorate in the field of Organizational Leadership, a Master degree in Management and a Bachelor of Science degree in Education.

Eric Kornacki // Re:Vision

Eric Kornacki is a food system visionary, community wealth building leader, and racial equity champion. He is a social entreprenuer. A committed to organizing power from the ground up, challenging the status quo, and creating a new economy where people and the planet matter more than profits. I am a husband, father, gardener, chef, brewer, builder and baker. Re:Vision’s mission is to work with people in economically marginalized neighborhoods to develop resident leaders, cultivate community food systems, and create an economy owned by the community.

Michelle Kobayashi // National Research Center

National Research Center Vice President Michelle Kobayashi has helped local governments maximize public opinion for more than twenty years. She is a thought-leader in the field of survey research and evaluation, and has written numerous books and articles on the subject. She travels the country to speak professionally and lead workshops about resident surveys, local government employee surveys, strategic planning and more.

Scott Wasserman // The Bell Policy Center

Scott has served as president of the Bell Policy Center and the Bell Action Network since August 2016. Scott leads a talented staff who plays a major role in fiscal reform, education policy, economic security, and other issues affecting Coloradans. Previously, Scott was deputy chief of staff to Gov. John Hickenlooper and chief of staff to both Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia and Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne. He worked in the governor’s office from 2013 to 2016, advising on health care, education, and workforce development. Before that, Scott spent eight years in leadership positions at SEIU and Colorado WINS. He also has worked as a lobbyist and served four years as director of communications and press secretary for the Colorado House Minority Office. Scott graduated from George Washington University with a bachelor’s degree in Middle East studies.

Colorado Brief Speakers

Dine Around Sessions 

Our sponsored Dine Around sessions were a chance for some our participants to dive deeper into subjects such as "Activating Downtown Red Cliff" sponsored by Hunn Planning & Policy, "Turning Brownfields Green: Electric Vehicle Charging Stations" sponsored by the Colorado Division of Oil and Public Safety, "Opportunity Zones and Colorado Real Estate" sponsored by Development Research Partners, "Loveland Artspace: A Creative Housing Development" sponsored by the City of Loveland, and so much more! The beautiful restaurants in these pictures are some of Aspen's bests including Mezzaluna, The Pyramid, Mi Chola, Hops Culture, The Red Onion, and Su Casa.


Our tours showcased many of Aspens's amenities including the American Planning Association (APA) award winning pedestrian mall - designated as one of the "Great Places in America", the Aspen Art Museum designed by internationally renown architect Shigeru Ban, the Wheeler/Stallard Historical Museum, and the pleasant surprise that Aspen hosts beautiful examples of Bauhaus architecture at the Aspen Institute right outside of downtown! Participants also got to learn about Glenwood Springs' monumental achievement, the Grand Avenue Bridge project, through a panel discussion and tour with all the big players that made the project happen - PR Studios, Community Builders, the City of Glenwood Springs, and Bohannan Huston.  

Location | Limelight Hotel - Aspen, CO &
the Jewish Community Center - Aspen, CO

See you in Colorado Springs in 2020!

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