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Renew Rural Iowa Conference

Iowans interested in issues vital to rural communities are invited to attend the 2022 Iowa Rural Summit, organized by the Iowa Rural Development Council. The event will be held on April 12th and 13th at the Gateway Hotel and Convention Center in Ames, Iowa. Communities are encouraged to register teams of three, though individuals are also eligible to attend the event. New for the 2022 Summit, college students interested in rural issues and economic development can register at a reduced price.

To register for the event as an individual, a team, or a student, visit The cost for a three-person team is $210. Individuals can register for $190 and students for $25. The registration fee includes admission to all Rural Summit events, breakfast on Tuesday and Wednesday morning, and lunch on Tuesday.

Pre-Summit events on April 11 include a Rural Housing Readiness Assessment Workshop and a tour of Iowa State’s Digital Manufacturing Lab. Another pre-conference tour will feature Gross-Wen Technologies and a demonstration of its algae-based system used to treat city wastewater.

Tuesday the 12th features sessions on making rural places more welcoming and recruiting and training rural leaders. Other Day One topics include growing rural ag-tech businesses, building broadband for all, housing success stories, and aging and living in place. The day wraps up with the presentation of the inaugural Rand Fisher Rural Leadership Award.

Wednesday’s events include a roundtable focus on the impacts of the 2020 U.S. Census. Also, the popular “45 Ideas in 45 Minutes” session allows communities to share their success stories. The day wraps up with a closing keynote address by Iowan Brenda Clark Hamilton on the need for dynamic leadership in rural Iowa. The Summit adjourns at noon.

The Iowa Rural Development Council was formed in 1992 as part of a Presidential Executive Order. Today a broad range of public-private partners supports its focus on empowering small towns and building capacity for rural leaders.

Sponsors for this year’s summit include the Iowa Farm Bureau’s Renew Rural Iowa initiative, ITC Midwest, Iowa’s Small Business Development Centers, D.A. Davidson, the IADG Community Foundation, Impact 7G, Grinnell Mutual, AARP, Iowa’s Cultivation Corridor and Monkeythis.

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