Reflections from CTA Conference 2008

NextGen Leadership Team

NextGen Leadership Team

It was a busy, festive weekend of catching up with old friends (and meeting some new ones) this past weekend in Milwaukee.  I am pretty indebted to the NextGen Leadership Team for providing a spark to my faith throughout the year, especially our outgoing members (Shane, Emma and Dawn).  I would highly encourage any of you who are interested in being a part of this creative, committed team to consider nominating yourself (or a friend).  You can get nomination forms by emailing Nicole.

I personally had a good time doing a presentation with a new buddy, Matt Bigelow (I had never met Matt until we began presenting on Saturday).  We were talking about how to use web technology in order to better reach people.  The workshops were well received, probably about 40-50 people in attendance at each session.  There was a lot of interest because of Barack Obama’s recent election to the White House – and his use of technology to get there.  As Matt pointed out, Obama was named Advertising Age’s marketer of the year.  The audience was great because of being patient – many in our audience use technology like it’s second nature, and others needed help in defining key terms.  The two best pieces of feedback that I got were that it was nice to see young people doing a presentation at the conference that was catered to an audience of any age.  It was also nice to hear that this blog has helped to create new leadership positions for editors, writers, and commentators.  Honestly, the real reason I wanted to do the workshop was to promote this blog, and we did see an abnormally high readership for a weekend this past weekend.

Finally, if you’ve never been to a CTA conference in Milwaukee – I would highly recommend you go!  You never know who you are going to meet there, whether it’s Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (the daughter of the late Robert Kennedy) or Bishop Remi de Roo (one of the few surviving bishops who attended all four sessions of the Second Vatican Council).  I dragged my wife along for her first trip, and she was in awe when she found herself riding an elevator with Dolores Huerta.  She wasn’t able to find the words that first time, but luckily we found Dolores later for a few sips of boxed wine and got to learn about her foundation.

Mike, Erica and Dolores Huerta

Mike, Erica and Dolores Huerta

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