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You've spent years honing your skills as a housing and community development professional. Now share your experience and knowledge by submitting a proposal for consideration as a presentation at the NAHRO 2012 Summer or National Conference.

We're looking for your best session ideas to help shape the thoughts and strategies that will influence industry professionals. Ideal are speakers who reflect our audience and can share their experiences, expertise as well as provide new thinking. While we welcome proposals on all topics, canned pitches aren't a fit here. NAHRO is specifically interested in your thoughts from your own experience, building on what's worked (or not) in your agencies, organizations or communities. Case studies, hands-on solutions and strategy explorations…there's no such thing as a crazy idea! The one thing we do know is that our attendees don't want to be talked at; they want to be engaged and challenged.

The Audience
Approximately 50% of conference attendees are CEOs/executive directors, 35% are commissioners, with affordable/public housing specialists, i.e. asset managers, HCV specialists, attorneys and housing authority board members make up the balance. Conference attendees are looking for ways to tackle the issues they face on a daily basis as well as new and better ways of doing things.

The Objective
The objective of NAHRO conferences is to provide high-quality education and networking opportunities for housing and community development professionals. Our multiple day, multiple-track format offers a self-directed, facilitated learning environment with education sessions designed to focus on current and emerging issues, best practices, and challenges facing the industry. (Presentations are designed for all levels of experience – from fundamental to intermediate to advance topics.) By submitting a proposal, you will help shape the conference program and future of your industry. If accepted, you will gain visibility in the industry and contribute to the advancement of your profession.

The Summer Conference consists of three days of educational programming to include two plenary sessions, 20+ concurrent sessions and networking events coupled with pre- and post-conference learning opportunities and committee/business meetings.

The National Conference consists of three days of educational programming that features three plenary sessions, 45+ concurrent sessions and MSC clinics, 100+ industry suppliers showcasing their products and services and networking events.

The Experience
Our pledge to our attendees to provide exceptional experiences, a vibrant community, and essential tools that will make them and their organization more successful! That means we need sessions that have…

  • Relevant content for an experienced audience that stretches thinking and new approaches
  • Content which is delivered in an engaging way and draws on the experience of attendees
  • Application exercises that involve the participants
  • Examples and case studies of real success (and successful failures!)
  • Practical tools that can be applied immediately in their organizations

Selection Process
Your proposal must be submitted by Friday, February 3. You will receive a confirmation of your submission. Each submission will be reviewed by a team of member volunteers and staff via a blind review process. You will be notified in March 2012 on the status of your submission.

Conference Theme and Topic Tracks
The conference theme is intended to provide guidance to prospective content leaders in the Call for Presentations and should be viewed as flexible. We want content leaders to actively address, incorporate and spark debate about the applicable themes and messaging.

Summer Conference
Theme: Creating Possibilities
Key Messaging: Innovation, ingenuity and results

National Conference
Theme: Advancing the Mission
Key Messaging: connections, cultivating partnerships and inspiring individuals

Within the theme, NAHRO will offer sessions in the following topic tracks. Our goal is to offer attendees the best knowledge and tools to do their jobs more effectively and make their organization more successful through a broad range of sessions. We are seeking the very best, most relevant and most thought-provoking ideas pertinent to the key topic areas below. All session proposals are required to select one topic track that best represents the focus of the session's content.

  • Commissioners - focuses on enhancing the commissioner's understanding of their role and responsibility related to advocacy, community leadership, and ethical conduct of agency.
  • Community Revitalization & Development - focuses on economic development, mixed-use development, neighborhood revitalization, and state and local agencies (in terms of "partnerships with" as well as "work undertaken by").
  • Housing & Community Development Finance - focuses on the basics of evaluating and repositioning portfolio in the context of community/market, various financing vehicles/mechanisms, and sophisticated mixed finance successes and best practices (putting the deal together).
  • Organizational Management - focuses on creative ways to meet the agency's performance goals and retain talented and loyal staff in today's environment of reduced resources and funding.
  • Public Housing - focuses on program administration, innovative development strategies, procurements, capital planning, resident services and programming, local economic development, neighborhood economic impact, self-sufficiency, maintenance operations, new technology, and legislative and regulatory matters.
  • Section 8 - focuses on resourceful and innovative program management through agencies' mandatory and discretionary authority and implementation of new laws and regulations.

The topic track descriptions are meant to serve as guidelines to the conference's primary content, but are not meant to exclude relevant related content.

Presentation Formats
Sessions are 90 minutes in length and may be presented in a variety of ways to encourage interaction. Our attendees don't want to be talked at; they want to be engaged and challenged. Consider which session style or format would most effectively deliver your content:

Panel – a small group of presenters share information with the audience and offer Q&A opportunities

Circle of Ideas – a facilitator encourages the sharing of information within and among groups in a roundtable setting

Debate – a diverse panel shares both sides of a hot topic and offer Q&A opportunities

Study Tour - Highlight success and./or lessons learned in conference city with regards to housing development and communities.

NOTE: Presentations cannot be sales pitches. If you are a supplier of products and/or services, we strongly suggest that you team up with housing and community development practitioners to make the session more dynamic and applicable.

Registration and Travel Information
All content leaders are able to register for the conference at the rate of $275.00 and are responsible for all related travel costs. NAHRO does not pay per diem, honoraria, or expenses. However, your registration fee for the day of your presentation is waived.

Content Leader Expectations
We expect presenters to:

  • Work closely with NAHRO before the conference and meet all deadlines.
  • Make no substantial changes in content, format, audiovisual needs, room set-up, identity or number of panelists without prior approval from NAHRO.
  • Design and provide high-quality PowerPoint presentations by the deadline defined.
  • Consent to an audio recording of the presentation for use in NAHRO's Live Learning Center (NAHRO owns the copyright of the recording).
  • Respect NAHRO as the sponsoring organization with either positive or neutral comments from the platform.
  • Acknowledge they are available to speak during any timeframe of the conference and as such will not request a change to the session timeframe assigned if selected.

For more information, please visit "General Information". To submit a presentation proposal please do so by logging in and then clicking on the "Proposal Builder." Have questions? Contact Jessica Pearce at

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