MASON CITY — There will be a Rural Economic Development Summit on Thursday at the Mason City Arena. First Citizens Bank has partnered with North Iowa Area Community College and the North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation to host the summit.
Jon Prebeck of First Citizens Bank says they wanted to hold the summit as part of looking ahead for the future of the economy in north-central Iowa. “Really just bringing people together that have that same mindset of we’ve done some great things in the past, but the past is kind of there to learn from and to grow from, and we really want to just spark that cooperation between not just folks in Mason City, but really rural north Iowa here that it’s going to take all of us to get on that same page, that same direction, moving forward to really have some good things happen for us in Mason City.”
Prebeck says the day will be led by keynote speaker Doctor David Kohl, who is renowned in the field of agriculture and economics. “What a better speaker to come in and know the ag economy, know where things are, know where things have been, and maybe give some insight maybe to where he thinks some things are going. The unique thing, if you have heard him speak before, we’re asking him to switch it up a little bit if you will and really bring in some information not just ag and agribusiness, but how those things intertwine and affect us here in north Iowa.”
After Kohl’s speech, there will be two separate panel discussions: a local one featuring NIACC president Steven Schulz, Emily Schmitt with Sukup Manufacturing and Dave Steffens of Norsemen Trucking; a state and federal panel will feature Iowa Economic Development Authority director Debi Durham, Theresa Greenfield with the US Department of Agriculture and Jeff Plagge with the Iowa Division of Banking.
The summit starts with registration and lunch at 11:00 AM with the program running from 12:00 noon to 4:00.