Vanguard is Next City’s annual gathering of 40 of the best and brightest urban leaders age 40 and under. The conference is free, and the window to apply closes Monday, December 14th at midnight. Here are our top 10 reasons to throw your hat in the ring to be part of the 2016 Vanguard conference happening in Houston, May 10th to the 14th.
1. Get to know 39 amazing leaders in your generation all doing innovative work in cities across North America.
2. Experience a city on the rise. Houston is tackling racial and economic inequality in a densifying urban core, taking the lead on data sharing and open government, and rethinking public transportation in a city often known for its sprawl.
3. Hear from academics and professionals about trends in urban policy and practice, including leaders from the Kinder Institute, a “think-and-do” tank at Rice University focused on urban issues in Houston and beyond.
4. Finally get your chance to not be the biggest urban planning geek in the room.
5. Explore Houston’s gorgeous Bayou Greenways with new friends who also want to talk about inclusive development.
6. Participate in the annual Big Idea Challenge, which will leave a lasting impact on the city.
7. Form deep and lasting connections within an influential network of your peers.
8. We’ll be staying at the Magnolia Hotel Houston, home to a rooftop pool, billiards room and an evening cookie buffet. Do we need to say more?
9. You won’t be just another tourist. Yes, there are fun photo ops, but Vanguard classes dive deep into host cities. Check out what we packed into three days in Reno last year.
10. After six years of hosting the Vanguard conference, we’ve built an influential alumni group, and many past participants will be attending. You’ll get to meet them — and join that growing club.