Create West Virginia is a catalyst.
“Almost a year later, I’m still acting on things I learned and working with people I met at the Create West Virginia Conference. I’m so glad that I was there for the entire event, that I wasn’t just there for a session or two. There aren’t many venues like this where people with very different viewpoints can have civil discussions, and that’s what we really need in West Virginia if we are going to make real progress. It’s easy to dismiss people that we don’t agree with, but I found myself in frequent, constructive, and respectful conversation with new people with whom I wouldn’t normally connect."
--Ryan Deaderick, PE, Production Engineering Manager, Energy Corporation of America
"I left the Create West Virginia Conference with a greater sense of responsibility, a sense of what I need to do in my business and my community to reach a higher level of success. I especially appreciated the Saturday energy forum. There were several sharply differing opinions expressed, but when it was over, I felt that I was better equipped to make my own decisions. Since the conference, I've been elected president of my chamber of commerce. I definitely want to take our director to next year's event."
--Lori Dado Meadows, Sales Manager, Ntelos; President, Buckhannon Chamber of Commerce
"It was good for our county, our area. The expertise of the opening keynote speaker, Dr. Thomas Frey, was amazing. Living here in central West Virginia, we're not exposed to a lot of that kind of thinking. It broadened my horizons quite a bit. The investment our county commission made in the conference was worth it."
--John Miller, Nicholas County Commissioner, speaking of the 2013 Create WV Conference in Richwood
"The Create West Virginia Conference in Richwood showed quite a number of people that it's possible to light up a small town, to reinvigorate a town. The exposure, all the people that the conference brought in to stay here rather than just drive through, it's hard to describe the impact it truly had. The great quality of the conference, the ideas so many people brought, the energy that was generated--it was like a blank canvas got put out there for all of us. It's up to us now to make something come of it."
--Ray Moeller, former Nicholas County VISTA worker, now WVSU Extension Agent working with the New River Gorge Regional Development Authority.
"Imagine a town that knew not just company, but a whole state, was coming, and in anticipation, broke out their brooms, mops, and paint brushes and pulled together for the first time in decades to spruce up. When Create West Virginia walked the talk in Richwood, in 2013, that happened. "
--Dr. Bob Henry Baber, Kellogg Fellow, 2007 National Wilderness Society Hero, Appalachian author and artist
"Any community that’s serious about economic development should be at the Create West Virginia Conference. I’ve been to every one of them since the first in 2007, and I always learn something new and valuable. I think you can’t afford not to go.”
--Charles Humphreys, Executive Director, Point Pleasant Main Street
"I attended the Create West Virginia Conference at Snowshoe before I returned to West Virginia. The energy there helped reinforce that I had made the right decision to move back home, launch my own company and publish WV Living magazine."
---Nikki Bowman, Entrepreneur, Publisher, New South Media
"The great thing about Create West Virginia is that they bring many different people from different disciplines together to look at problems we’re all facing. The sharing, the conversations have helped us come up with new approaches to common challenges."
--Debra Herndon, Former City Manager, Shinnston, WV
"Create West Virginia has been the key galvanizing force behind the emphasis on entrepreneurship in the past few years, including in schools. Without Create West Virginia, it just wouldn't be happening."
--Mark Swiger, Marshall County educator, student entrepreneur coach, and National Green Ribbon Schools co-chairman for the US Green Building Council.