The largest California economic summit in its 11-year history

Bakersfield, CA, Oct. 28, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The 2022 California Economic Summit concluded Friday in Bakersfield. This year’s event, the most attended in the summit’s 11-year history, drew nearly 1,000 attendees from across the state to the Central Valley to focus on addressing the most pressing problems of California.

Labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta pointed out the gap in economic prosperity: “Here in the San Joaquin Valley, from Bakersfield to Sacramento, more than 20 prisons and only one university have been built since 1965. [University of California at Merced]. We see our tax dollars going here.” Huerta received a standing ovation before her remarks.

“Change is difficult, but we are in the business of change, and California is long into the future,” said Gov. Gavin Newsom. “The future happens here first. We are America’s upcoming attraction. The world expects from us leadership, entrepreneurial energy.”

“You already have the largest wind and solar facilities in the world in California,” the governor continued. “We dominate this area and this is a great opportunity – so I would say to people, ‘keep doing what we’re doing’.” Keep in mind that we have the backs of those who have made the transition.”

A recording of the governor’s remarks can be found here.

These energy developments were a key theme of this year’s CA FWD summit discussion Building a Sustainable Energy Future: A Call to Action. This energy call to action contains five recommendations that set California’s compass for meeting its zero-carbon electricity generation goal by 2045 and recommends an “all of the above” approach that considers all industries and options, including oil and gas, nuclear energy, biomass and others.

Another key topic of the summit was equitable economic growth.

“The state of California has decided that this infrastructure issue is critical to moving our economy forward to get more people working in good, middle-class jobs,” said California Infrastructure Advisor Antonio Villaraigosa. Over the past several months, CA FWD has worked with Villariagosa on regional input sessions on California infrastructure priorities.

The summit also featured nine workshops where participants collaborated on real-world solutions to California’s most pressing issues. Workshops this year included Building a Sustainable Energy Future, Housing and Home Ownership, Economic Prosperity in a Changing Climate, Advancing Inclusive Regional Economies, The Creative Economy and more.

“The impact of this year’s summit reminds us of the importance of bringing all regions to the table,” said CA FWD CEO Micah Weinberg. “California’s regions are all unique, with different workforces and different industries – our focus on a regional approach to achieving shared prosperity for all only strengthens each of California’s communities and the state as a whole.”

Next year, the Summit will meet in the Imperial and Coachella Valleys in November 2023. The annual event has previously been held in Santa Clara, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Ontario, San Diego, Santa Rosa, Fresno, Monterey and Bakersfield.

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About CA FWD

California Forward (CA FWD) leads a statewide movement that brings people together across communities, regions and interests to improve government and create inclusive, sustainable growth for everyone. A 501(c)(3) organization, CA FWD directs collective action to identify solutions that can be adopted and scaled to meet the challenges facing the state. CA FWD serves as the backbone for the California Stewardship Network, an alliance of regional economic development leaders, and is home to the California Economic Summit and the California Dream Index. To view our work product from last year’s summit, which informs our agenda for this year and which this year’s summit will build on, see the 2022 Roadmap to Shared Prosperity.

  • Governor Gavin Newsom

  • Labor leader Dolores Huerta

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