MONTPELIER — The Vermont Chamber of Commerce’s annual Vermont Economic Conference made its in-person return with over 200 business and policy leaders gathering at the University of Vermont Dudley H. Davis Center for an in-depth look at national, global, and state perspectives on the economy as well as the latest economic indicators for business growth.
“The Vermont Chamber understands what it takes to help businesses grow and thrive to build strong, vibrant communities, and our members have trusted us with this work to be stewards of the Vermont economy. Events like the Vermont Economic Conference help ensure a viable future for our state and achieve our mission of advancing Vermont’s economy,” said Vermont Chamber President Betsy Bishop. “This event is one of many we hope to bring back in person so that stakeholders from all industries, across every corner of the state, can continue to come together to learn from each other, support each other, create solutions, and work together.”
Senator Peter Welch delivered remarks and reaffirmed his commitment to being a champion for Vermont businesses, stating, “My goal in Washington is to help make it possible for Vermont families to do their work, live good lives, and uphold the traditions that make us proud to be Vermonters. I’ll continue to champion the affordability issues I’ve led in the House, while serving as an advocate for our farms on the Agriculture committee and working to protect our democracy as a member of the Judiciary and Rules committees. I’ll do everything I can to help Vermonters thrive and support the state we love.”
Two keynote speakers headlined the conference, Gus Faucher, senior vice president, and chief economist for PNC Financial Services Group, and Eva McKend, national political reporter for CNN. Faucher provided his signature address, entitled “National Economic Trends: Balancing Inflation, Consumer Spending, and Employment.” McKend, who previously reported for WCAX returned to Vermont to reflect on her time covering the midterm elections and the Washington, DC discourse on economic issues such as inflation and immigration in her keynote entitled, “Balance of Power: A Post-Election Economic Outlook.”
The event also provided an international economic outlook from Ken Kim, senior economist for KPMG, a presentation on Vermont demographics, population, and workforce data from Mat Barewicz, economic & labor market information chief for the Vermont Department of Labor, and a breakdown of the state budget from Commissioners Adam Greshin and Craig Bolio.
The agenda closed with the presentation of the 2022 Outstanding Business of the Year Award to Hickok & Boardman Insurance Group. The award was presented by the Vermont Chamber of Commerce and VermontBiz and accepted by Scott Boardman, CEO, and Paul Plunkett, President & COO, on behalf of the business.