On March 25–28, SDWP staff and board members participated in The Forum 2017 presented by the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) in Washington, D.C. The theme was “Defining Challenges, Shaping Opportunities” and focused on a national conversation around shared responsibility to address the needs of businesses, career seekers, and local economies, and to secure America’s ability to compete globally.
More than 1,300 private sector business representatives and public sector employees from education, economic development, workforce development and local government attended.
Sessions covered WIOA implementation, program integration, local and regional planning, regulatory issues and the evolving structure and focus of workforce boards. SDWP staff participated on numerous panels.
Andrew Picard, Director of Programs, joined a panel of other workforce directors and experts in a NAWB pre-conference session focused on Regional Plans, including best practices to bring regional partners to the table, metrics to measure success, and how to convert a plan on paper into meaningful actions in your community.
Andy Hall, Vice President and Chief Program Officer, was a panelist on “Technology and the Future of Workforce Development Service Delivery” and discussed a new digital tool SDWP is developing in partnership with Code for America. He also spoke on the “Maximizing Impact through WIOA Pay for Performance” panel which provided insight into how the pay for performance model can be applied to workforce outcomes for youth.
Tina Ngo Bartel, Director of Business Programs and Research, participated in two panels discussing the retail and hospitality sectors — an industry briefing on trends and a discussion on the national Reimagine Retail grant program that provides retail workers with specialized training needed to advance in their careers.
“The value of NAWB goes beyond the lessons learned in the sessions offered to attendees, and can also be found in the hallways, at the receptions and in making connections with other thought leaders across the country who are all passionate about our evolving field of work,” says Picard.
While in D.C., SDWP visited with San Diego elected officials, including representatives from the offices of Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representative Darrell Issa. The meetings provided an opportunity to discuss the potential impact the “skinny budget” proposed by The White House would have on local workforce programs, and share exciting outcomes of ongoing programs such as our Reentry Works program that has opened two job centers inside San Diego County jails.
NAWB is the national voice for Workforce Development Boards, the regional and local business-led organizations that convene and collaborate to reduce unemployment and boost economic development by preparing job seekers and connecting employers with a highly-skilled workforce. NAWB represents approximately 600 business-led Workforce Development Boards and 12,000 business and public sector volunteers who sit on those boards and plan state and local workforce development initiatives and job training programs in their communities. NAWB members provided assistance to more than 13 million people in the year ending December 31, 2015 and placed approximately 7.8 million of those people in jobs.