Annual Conference

2018 Summer Conference

Summer Conference a Huge Success!

More than 300 Community Action Agency staff and supporters attended the joint MCA and Bureau of Community Action and Economic Opportunity (BCAEO) summer conference at Crystal Mountain Resort in Thompsonville, July 10-12, making it the most well attended conference since the days of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act in 2009-10.

Attracted by the theme of Achieving Excellence in Challenging Times, and an agenda that featured 70 breakout sessions on a broad cross-section of CAA topics and areas of concern, conference attendees experienced two and a half days of professional development and personal growth. There were offerings for board members, front line staff, weatherization personnel, and HR, fiscal, IT, and marketing staff. In addition, Michigan Head Start Association joined us for a day of directors’ networking, creating an even more comprehensive network experience.

Our lineup of keynote speakers included a mixture of the inspirational and the informational. Judge Tommy Webb’s personal story of his early years as Korean War orphan and how his eventual adoption into a Midwest family transformed his life, providing the powerful message of Every Person Has Value, had many in the audience holding back tears even as they laughed at his humorous and humble delivery. Michigan State University’s Rachel Croson and UM’s Luke Schaefer shared their research and academic studies of living in poverty, illuminating how we approach our work of helping families cope with scarcity and lack of opportunity.

On the social side, Tuesday evening’s barbecue with a DJ supplying dinner and dancing music had everyone in a festive mood. The more adventurous availed themselves of the resort’s Alpine Slide as part of a fundraiser for the National Community Action Foundation. Wednesday night’s awards dinner included recognition of this year’s graduates of MCA’s Leadership Development Institute and five recipients of the Certified Community Action Professional designation. The awards presentations were followed by a spirited auction that demonstrated the network’s generous support of the Friends of Michigan Community Action political action committee—We raised $7000 for the cause!

We received great feedback on our conference meals and social events which would not have been possible without the generous support of our sponsors! We are grateful for their support and trust in MCA to use their contributions to ensure a productive and enjoyable conference. See below for the list of our 2018 sponsors.

If you attended the conference, there’s still time to send in your evaluations of the event in general and the breakout sessions you attended. Simply use the conference app to access the evaluation surveys. As we begin planning for next year’s conference, the evaluations will be a big help in the selection of topics and speakers for 2019.

And if you’d like to relive a few of the moments of the 2018 joint MCA-BCAEO summer conference, click here to see some pictures of people learning, sharing, and having fun.

Summer Conference Sponsors

Blue Cross Complete Consumers Energy Efficiency United/CLEAResult MDHHS MSHDA Mutual of America OLHSA PNC Bank SEMCO USDA Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency