Inflation & Workforce, Kitsap's Future, Innovation and more on tap for KEDA Fall Forum

Inflation & Workforce, Kitsap's Future, Innovation and more on tap for KEDA Fall Forum Main Photo

6 Oct 2022

Events, Economy, innovation, Workforce, Kitsap County, Fall Forum

Join us October 20th, from 1-5pm at the Kitsap Conference Center for a look at the opportunities & challenges shaping Kitsap's future economy. 

 Get your tickets now Registration closes October 11th.


 KITSAP'S ECONOMY; Opportunities, Challenges & the Future

KEYNOTE SPEAKER:  Martin Karl Vanags, Martin Karl Consulting

Martin Karl Vanags is an economic development professional of thirty-five years. He has worked in a wide range of roles in economic development, community development, city management and entrepreneurship. After years working in Illinois, Indiana and New York State, Vanags is leading efforts to lead economic developers through the challenges posed by climate change. Vanags has served on numerous professional boards and commissions related to economic development in the communities he has served including serving on the Board of the International Economic Development Council. Vanags has a Masters degree in Public Administration from Northern Illinois University a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science form Illinois State University and is a Certified Economic developer. Learn more>>



Also featuring:


Anneliese Vance-Sherman,Ph.D
Regional Labor Economist State of Washington

To suggest that the past couple years were tumultuous would be a laughable understatement. Observations of unprecedented job losses and sky-high unemployment rates in 2020 were quickly replaced with labor shortages, record-low unemployment rates, and inflation in 2022. Now that some of the dust has settled, it is time to make sense of it all. This presentation will explore what has changed (and what hasn’t) over the past couple years in order to make sense of where we are today and what this could mean for the future.  


Inclusive Hiring: Realities and Rewards

Workforce challenges abound. Finding the perfect person for your job is more difficult than ever - wouldn't it be great to learn about people who are willing, able and ready to get to work. Kitsap's Employment First Coalition will open your eyes to untapped workers who are looking for opportunities. This panel includes speakers from local supported employment agencies. We will also hear from an employer and an employee! We will share individual, community, and economic benefits of inclusive employment and how to develop a mighty workforce through inclusion!

Employment First Coalition (EFC) is a collaborative initiative elevating supported employment in Kitsap County comprised of ocal supported employment agencies including: Vadis, Cares of Washington, Trillium, Holly Ridge Center, and Easter Seals. Other coalition members are Kitsap County Developmental Disabilities Administration and Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, and Wise.


What everyone needs to know about attracting, growing, and retaining our world-class startups 

In 2022, news broke that Seattle now ranks No. 9 in the world for startup ecosystems, thanks to an enviable overlap of top notch talent, thriving accelerators and incubators, and a growing number of VCs and angel investors. But if you think that startup growth is limited to Seattle city boundaries—think again. Kitsap, too, is home to a burgeoning number of world-class startups that have the potential to be major drivers of both our local and global economies. Do we know who they are, much less what they need, in order to thrive in Kitsap? 

Katie Hoffman, Cofounder and COO, Phaidra 
Luke Swanson, CEO, GovGig 
Nick Johnson, Cofounder and Creative Director, 

Moderated by: Alanna Imbach, Founder, Vibe Coworks 

Katie Hoffman

Nick Swanson

Alanna Imbach


WAV-C: Introducing Maritime Autonomy 

Seth Abelson, Ph.D., WAV-C Program Manager

Learn about KEDA's newest initiative, Washington Autonomous Vehicle Cluster (WAV-C) and the opportunities it presents for Kitsap County. This project is fully funded through a grant from WA State Commerce. WAV-C with a mission to accelerate innovation across the state and federal landscape for autonomous and unmanned vehicles, particularly in the maritime sector. It will become a platform for international excellence and generate thousands of jobs statewide.



Premier Sponsor:

Puget Sound Energy logo


Partner Sponsor:

Greater Kitsap Chamber of Commerce logo