William Eggers, author and Executive Director of Deloitte’s Center for Government Insights and Sen. Steve Padilla (SD 18) among dignitaries joining Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis, State Treasurer Fiona Ma and Asm. Greg Wallis (AD 47) at California Economic Summit in Indian Wells

SACRAMENTO, Calif., Aug. 31, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — More excitement is on the horizon for the 2023 California Economic Summit in Indian Wells, CA on October 11-13. This year’s Summit, produced by California Forward(CA FWD) in partnership with members of its California Stewardship Network, marks the 12th annual gathering of state policy, regional, business, civic and community leaders from across the state’s diverse regions.

Gov. Gavin Newsom, honorary Summit co-chair, said at last year’s Summit, “Change is difficult, but we’re in the change business and California has long been in the future business. The future happens here first. We’re America’s coming attraction. The world looks to us for leadership, entrepreneurial energy.”

Joining CA FWD in making these changes—with the goal of building an inclusive and sustainable economy where all Californians can prosper—is keynote speaker William Eggers, co-author of “Bridgebuilders: How Government Can Transcend Boundaries To Solve Big Problems.”

“I look forward to being a part of this year’s California Economic Summit, an event that brings changemakers together at the same table,” said Eggers. “It’s an ideal space to share my work on how government can solve big challenges by bridging gaps between agencies, levels of government and across the public and private sectors.”

In addition to keynote speakers and working sessions, a defining feature of the Summit is that a different region within California hosts the event each year, providing the host region with the opportunity to make a distinct and important impact on attendees. Joining regional tours focused on Lithium Valley, healthcare in the region and local agriculture, two new tours have been added to this year’s Summit agenda, including:

  1. The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians Indian Canyons Tour, an immersive experience of the ancestral home of the Agua Caliente people, featuring a one-mile loop hiking tour of Andreas Canyon, a visit to Palm Canyon and more
  2. The Frontline and Colonia Communities of the Salton Sea tour, an insightful opportunity to listen and learn directly from the people that live in and call the Imperial Valley home

A listing of all the tours, speakers and the Summit agenda can be found here.

“The Summit is a different kind of event, designed to focus the ideas and energy of leaders from across California’s geography, sectors and industries,” said CA FWD Interim CEO Ismael (Ish) Herrera. “Attendees get to roll up their sleeves and directly apply their best thinking through the Summit’s working sessions that take on issues key to a prosperous California and result in tangible next steps.”

Working sessions at this year’s Summit will focus on housing, broadband access, infrastructure, manufacturing, the creative economy, small business ownership by women and people of color, climate resiliency and more.

Regional co-hosts of this year’s Summit include Conrado Bárzaga, CEO of Desert Healthcare District & Foundation; Tim Kelley, President and CEO of Imperial Valley Economic Development Corporation; Luis Olmedo, Executive Director of Comite Civico del Valle; Silvia Paz, Executive Director of Alianza Coachella Valley and Heather Vaikona, President and CEO of Lift to Rise.

For more information and to register, visit Complimentary registration is available for credentialed press; contact Sarah Walsh for press code.

California Lt. Governor and featured speaker at the 2023 Summit, Eleni Kounalakis shares this video message about the event!


California Forward  (CA FWD) leads a statewide movement, bringing people together across communities, regions and interests to improve government and create inclusive, sustainable growth for everyone. A 501(c)(3)organization, CA FWD drives collective action to identify solutions that can be taken to scale to meet the challenges the state is facing. CA FWD serves as the backbone for the California Stewardship Network, an alliance of regional economic development leaders, and is home to the California Economic Summit and the California Dream Index. To view our work product from last year’s Summit, which informs our agenda for the year and will be built upon at this year’s Summit, see the 2023 Roadmap to Shared Prosperity.

Sarah Walsh 
[email protected]

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