Rebecca Darwin and Marianne Barnes will be among the presenters at this year's Emerge conference.
On Tuesday, March 28, more than 350 of central Kentucky’s emerging leaders are expected to convene at the downtown convention center for Commerce Lexington’s4th annual Emerge Conference.
Born in 2014, the event is designed to provide a platform for young professionals to connect with the community, said Amy Carrington, Commerce Lexington’s director of leadership development.
“We had been hearing from young professionals that they were having a hard time plugging into key areas of our community, and finding a place to not only share ideas, but to make an impact on the future of our region,” Carrington explained. “We wanted to be able to take it to the next level and provide emerging leaders and entrepreneurs with a higher level of interaction, idea-sharing and professional and personal development.”
An interactive, all-day experience, the conference features a luncheon with two keynote speakers as well as several breakout sessions throughout the day. Breakout sessions fall under the category of personal growth, professional development or community engagement, and will focus on a variety of topics, ranging from the state’s heroin epidemic to and how to manage and lead people. Among the panelists featured in the breakout sessions are Salvador Sanchez, owner of Chocolate Holler and Cup of Commonwealth; Angela Baldridge of The Plantory; Ed Quinn of RJ Corman; and Kurt Gohde and Kremena Todorova of the Unlearn Fear + Hate art project.
An executive of a well known southern magazine and the first woman in Kentucky’s bourbon industry to hold title of “master distiller” will be the key presenters during the luncheon.
“We try to feature people who are doing awesome things – maybe they have created something or they have an inspirational story to tell,” she said,“This year’s presenters are two pioneers in their fields.”
Rebecca Darwin, the co founder of Garden & Gun magazine and CEO of The Allee Group, and Marianna Barnes, master distiller for Castle and Key Distillery, will share their stories with conference attendees during this year’s luncheon. The two women, both of whom are leaders in their respective fields, will share how they’re breaking barriers in the workplace, branding their products and overcoming obstacles, as well as share what it is like to venture into something new when it comes to your career.
This professional development opportunity is geared toward all emerging leaders, regardless of age or profession.
“We started using the term ‘emerging leader’ rather than ‘young professional’ because we see a range of ages and occupations at this gathering,” Carrington said. “We don’t want anyone to opt out of attending because they do not consider themselves ‘young’ or ‘professional.’”
In addition to the educational breakout sessions and luncheon, the event will conclude with a panel discussion about Lexington’s future over the next 25 years. Overall, the experience is geared to unify and empower the next generation of leaders in Central Kentucky, by encouraging them to network and collaborate with current community leaders as well as each other.
This year’s Emerge conference will take place at the Lexington Center’s Thoroughbred Ballroom, located at 430 West Vine Street, on March 28 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Online registration is available at www.emergelexington.com.
Emerge 2017 Breakout Sessions:
1. When Will You Retire? (Money Management)
2. To Serve & Direct (Board Service 101)
3. Tough Talk (Cringe Worthy conversations)
1. Manager on Duty (Managing and Leading People)
2. The Business of Your Career
3. Own the Room (Executive Speaking & Presence)
1. Make _ Happen (Unlearn Fear + Hate)
2. The Creatives (Creative Economy)
3. Heroin: Needling the Problem (Injecting Hope: A Community Response to the Opioid Epidemic)