Site Selectors Guild Fall Forum

Opportunity for One-On-One Networking

The Fall Forum is a condensed, intimate conference with even more limited attendance. At the request of economic developers seeking more one-on-one access to site selectors, Fall Forum is about half the size of the Guild’s Annual Conference and boasts a ratio of eight economic developers to one site selector. Approximately half of the Guild’s members attend this event, creating a smaller, more close-knit conference atmosphere. Similar to the Annual Conference, knowledge sharing, discussion panels, breakout sessions and networking are the hallmark of the Fall Forum.

Event details

Date & Time

October 16-18, 2023


New Orleans, LA


JW Marriott New Orleans


All events are located at the JW Marriott New Orleans hotel unless otherwise noted. Event locations and times are subject to change.

9:00 AM | Badge Pick-up

Ile de France Foyer

12:00 PM – 2:00 PM | Guild Partner Event (private event for Guild Partners and participating Guild Members only)

7:00 PM – 9:00 PM | Welcome Reception
Pat O’Brien’s (Off-site)

7:00 AM | Badge Pick-up
Ile de France Foyer

7:30 AM – 8:30 AM | Breakfast
Ile de France Foyer

8:45 AM – 10:30 AM |
Meet the Guild Members
Case Study Panel

Ile de France Ballroom

10:30 AM – 11:00 AM | Break
Ile de France Foyer

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM | Breakout Sessions

  1. Rural Competitiveness: Practical Advice for Building Thriving Communities
    • About: Guild Members with strong experience in rural America provide valuable advice for attracting investment. From identifying competitive advantages and marketing strategies, to navigating infrastructure and workforce considerations, panelists offer their best thinking for rural communities to thrive in today’s competitive landscape.
    • Panelists: Courtney Dunbar, Jay Garner, Larry Moretti
      and Leslie Wagner
      St. Claude
  2. RFI Exchange: An Open Discussion Between EDOs and Guild Members
    • About: This session is a two-way street. Our experienced panel kicks things off with a range of examples of what makes an RFI response stand out or fall short. The table then turns as economic developers share their experiences and perspectives and offer recommendations on improving the overall RFI process.
    • Panelists: Kim Williams Davis, Natalie Lynch, Jim Renzas
      and John Rocca
  3. FDI Insights: Positioning Your Community for the Next Wave of International Investment
    • About: As economic development groups grapple with the complexities of both new investment and reshoring from overseas, panelists share real-world case studies and expert predictions on the factors influencing reshoring decisions and how their clients are navigating the changing landscape of global supply chain.
    • Panelists: Michelle Comerford, Jason Hickey, Dennis Meseroll,
      Phil Schneider and Elias van Herwaarden
  4. The Future is Now: Will Artificial Intelligence Revolutionize Site Selection and Economic Development?
    • About: This breakout session explores the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) to revolutionize site selection and economic development. Attendees will learn how AI can provide more accurate, data-driven insights to inform site selection decisions and how it can streamline the economic development process from start to finish.
    • Panelists: Didi Caldwell, Bob Hess, Seth Martindale
      and Gregg Wassmansdorf
  5. The Elevator Pitch: Guild Members Offer Candid Feedback on EDO Presentations
    • About: Can you describe your community’s unique story in 90 seconds? A pre-selected group of eight economic developers will each communicate their business case before Guild Members and a room of their EDO peers. Guild Members will provide live feedback on the pluses and minuses of each pitch followed by overarching recommendations for all economic developers.
    • Panelists: Dennis Donovan, Taylor Gravois, Kim Moore
      and Gray Swoope

12:00 PM – 1:30 PM | Lunch & GUILD Talks
About the GUILD Talks: Inspired by guidelines from the popular TED Talk format, three Guild Members share 6-8-minute talks of strong relevance to economic developers:

  • Rajeev Thakur – The New Nuclear and Implications for Site Selection
  • John Longshore – Decisions That Define Communities
  • Dennis Meseroll – Reshoring from China: The Reality and the Hype

Ile de France Foyer

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM | Breakout Sessions
Same topics and panelists as previous session
Same locations as previous session

2:30 PM – 3:00 PM | Break
Ile de France Foyer

3:00 PM – 4:00 PM | Table Talk – round 1
Ile de France Ballroom

4:30 PM – 5:30 PM | Happy Hour
Ile de France Foyer

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM | Dinner with Consultants Sponsor Dinners
(private dinners for Dinner sponsors and Guild Members)

7:30 – 8:00 AM | Breakfast
Ile de France Foyer

8:00 AM – 9:15 AM | Case Study Panel
Ile de France Ballroom

9:15 AM – 9:45 AM | Break
Ile de France Foyer

9:45 AM – 11:30 AM | Closing & Table Talk – round 2
Ile de France Ballroom


Registration for the 2023 Fall Forum is currently sold out. Click here to be placed on the waiting list.

Registration Fee

The registration fee is $2,100 per attendee (excluding hotel and/or travel accommodations) and is non-transferrable between other Guild events such as the Annual Conference and/or Fall Forum and can only be transferred to another attendee within the same organization.


To be eligible to attend the Fall Forum, you must be a practicing professional from a local, regional, state or national economic development organization in the U.S. or abroad. Each registration will be vetted for eligibility before attendance is confirmed. Once eligibility is confirmed, you will receive notification of your acceptance and provided information in regards to payment.U.S. or abroad. Each registration will be vetted for eligibility before attendance is confirmed. Once eligibility is confirmed, you will receive notification of your acceptance and provided information in regards to payment and the hotel link.

Registration Deadlines

The last day for registration refunds is September 15, 2023.

The last day for registration name changes is September 29, 2023. The registration fee is non-transferrable between events such as the Annual Conference and/or Fall Forum and can only be transferred to another attendee within the same organization.


Click here to view the available sponsorships, secure a sponsorship and download the sponsorship benefits.

Past Fall Forums

Previous Dates & Locations

2015 | Philadelphia, PA | October 26-28
2016 | Little Rock, AR | October 24-26
2017 | Seattle, WA | September 25-27
2018 | Greenville, SC | September 10-12
2019 | Dallas/Plano, TX | September 9-11
2021 | Dallas, TX | November 8-10
2022 | Richmond, VA | September 19-21

Participating Guild Members

Didi Caldwell

Past Chair

Global Location Strategies
Greenville, SC

Michelle Comerford

Board Member

Biggins Lacy Shapiro & Company
Cleveland, OH

Kim Williams Davis

Quest Site Solutions
Greenville, SC

Dennis Donovan

Wadley Donovan Gutshaw Consulting
Bridgewater, NJ

Courtney Dunbar

Burns & McDonnell

Jay Garner

Past Chair

Garner Economics, LLC.
Fayetteville, GA

Larry Gigerich


Indianapolis, IN

Taylor Gravois

CSRS, Inc.

Bob Hess

Arlington Heights, IL

Jason Hickey

Hickey & Associates
New York, NY

Chris Lloyd

Board Member
Past Chair

McGuireWoods Consulting, LLC
Richmond, VA

John Longshore

Greenville, SC

Seth Martindale

Vice Chair

CBRE, Inc.
Orange County, CA

Dennis Meseroll

Tractus Asia Limited
Bangkok City, Thailand

Kim Moore

Board Advisor

Dallas, TX

Larry Moretti

Board Advisor

LFM Corporate Location Solutions

Mike Mullis

J.M. Mullis, Inc.
Memphis, TN

Denise Mullis

J.M. Mullis, Inc.
Florida and Tennessee

Jim Renzas

BCI Global
Irvine, CA

John Rocca


JLL Consulting
Los Angeles, CA

Phil Schneider

Past Chair

Schneider Strategy Consulting, LLC
Milwaukee, WI

Gray Swoope

VisionFirst Advisors

Rajeev Thakur

Seattle, WA

Elias van Herwaarden

Colliers International

Leslie Wagner

Indianapolis, IN

Gregg Wassmansdorf

Board Member
Past Chair

Greater Toronto

Natalie Lynch

Deloitte Consulting