2018 Neighborhoods USA Conference
The 2018 Neighborhoods USA Conference, held on May 23-26, 2018, was the 43rd annual conference of the Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based Neighborhoods USA, Inc., a non-profit organization founded in 1975 which helps to build and strengthen neighborhood organizations across the country. The annual conference brings together neighborhood leaders for workshops, presentations, tours, networking and social events. The group also presents several awards, including "Neighborhood of the Year".
Birmingham, which often brings the largest delegation from its 99 neighborhoods to the annual event, previously hosted NUSA Conferences in 1982 and 1995. The theme of the 2018 conference, held at the Sheraton Birmingham and BJCC East Meeting Rooms, was "Building Tomorrow's Neighborhoods Today". Highlights of the program included a "Mayoral Panel" with Birmingham mayor Randall Woodfin, New Orleans, Louisiana mayor LaToya Cantrell, and Jackson, Mississippi mayor Chokwe Lumumba, along with keynote addresses by Faith Chapel Christian Center pastor Michael Moore, former UAB School of Public Health dean Max Michael, and Church of the Highlands outreach director Dennis Harris.
At the heart of the conference were 65 workshops, divided into nine tracks over six sessions. These were supplemented by two tour opportunities with a total of 19 tours available. Other conference events included meetings and elections for NUSA's board, exhibits, and award judging and presentations. Social events included a Mayor's Welcome Reception on Wednesday evening, a "Roaring '20's Ball" on Friday evening, and "Jazz in the Park" in Linn Park on Saturday evening. The conference was paralleled by a first-ever NUSA Youth Conference which focused on learning about municipal governance.
- Edgemon, Erin (May 17, 2018) "Birmingham on display at neighborhoods conference; event to draw 1,000." The Birmingham News