Insightful, Informative, Innovative: Annual High Desert Opportunity Conference Wows Attendees


By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley) – The hundreds of national and regional entrepreneurs gathered in Rancho Cucamonga this Thursday truly “Discovered the Difference” when it comes to doing business in the high energy, high opportunity High Desert region of southern California.

Attendees packed the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center to hear from – and interact with – dozens of business leaders and economic experts in the High Desert.

Keynote speaker and internationally-recognized business and media leader Eric Schurenberg, told the gathering that the High Desert is primed to become the next SoCal hot spot for business growth.

“The people and businesses of the High Desert are inventive and in love with where they live and dedicated to bringing growth to the region,” said Schurenberg, president and editor in chief of Inc. magazine, one of the world’s most noted business journals. “They really understand that quality of life issues like good schools and good roads and cultural opportunities are as important as proper tax and regulatory structures when it comes to creating a great place to grow a business.”

The gathering also heard from more than another dozen panelists, representing industries from high-tech to hospitality, getting tips and tools of the trade from each. “The growth of the High Desert economy is a major factor in our industry as is the skilled labor force,” said Craig Carrick CEO of ComAv, one of the nation’s most experienced aviation firms. “We’re growing our employee base by 20 per cent per year so that in twenty years we will go from 200 employees now to 2000 and we think sky’s the limit for the future!”

A regional economist, Sean Flynn (author and Scripps Claremont professor) noted the High Desert’s infrastructure could be the key to continued growth. “Improving existing infrastructure – like roads and airports – and adding new infrastructure is extremely important to the economic growth of any region and I think the High Desert is committed to both paths,”  Flynn said.

Those gathered were truly impressed by the knowledge imparted during the event. “The overall message was so positive,” said Cindy Gustin, senior business development officer for AlaskaUSA Federal Credit Union in Victorville.  “The people who live in the High Desert and the opportunities we can all create together will allow us to build a wonderfully prosperous future.”

This year’s conference is an annual event hosted by High Desert Opportunity, whose leader Cari Thomas could not have been more pleased with the outcome. “We could not be more delighted with the attendance and especially how engaged and thoughtful all of our attendees were,” Thomas said.  “We are already looking forward to next year!”

About High Desert Opportunity High Desert Opportunity (HDO) is the premier High Desert event annually showcasing local businesses and development opportunities for new and expanding businesses. The goal of the event is to support economic growth and stability by attracting businesses and jobs to the High Desert.  The region encompasses the cities of Adelanto, Apple Valley, Barstow, Hesperia and Victorville as well as portions of San Bernardino County.  In its 36th year, High Desert Opportunity continues to grow and evolve, focusing on the benefits of doing business in the High Desert.


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