The Vanguard is an annual experiential urban leadership gathering of the best and brightest young urban leaders working to improve cities across sectors, including urban planning, community development, entrepreneurship, government, transportation, sustainability, design, art and media. Each year, Next City selects 40 applicants whose smart ideas for cities, experience in the field and ambition for the future all show great promise. The conference is free and there are a limited number of stipends to cover travel costs for qualified applicants.
Take a look at this year’s prestigious network of young urban thought leaders, the 2015 Vanguards, who joined Next City in Reno, Nevada, May 6th to the 8th. Learn more about our past Vanguard conferences and read our announcement to find out why we chose Houston for 2016.
“The experience taught me that there is so much that can be done in a city that’s looking for change.”
Lead Product Designer, Streetmix
“Vanguard gave me a new perspective on urban affairs and re-affirmed the need for diversity in thought and lived experience in the urban affairs field.”
R. Denise Everson
Sustainability Liaison, District of Columbia Housing Authority
“No other conference provides such an in-depth look at the people, programs, and ideas that are powering local economies and positive change within cities.”
Senior Associate, Nelson\Nygaard
“The Vanguard Conference was wonderfully exhausting and equally rewarding. The flood of new information and bold ideas has reinforced my passion for my own work and for my vision and passion for cities.”
Director of Special Projects and Civic Investment, Health & Hospital Corporation
“I find everything about the Vanguard experience to be a constant source of inspiration. Over those days, I found myself challenged to think differently and more analytically about issues that impact our cities. At the end, I left the conference feeling re-energized and ready for action!”
William Christopher Tate
Founder and President of TateSpace LLC and
Commissioner, City of Paterson Historic Preservation Commission
“The experience opened my eyes to how important community engagement is for the success of cities and neighborhoods and how non planners can play a decisive role in the betterment of their communities.”
Luis Nieves-Ruiz, AICP
Economic Development Program Manager, East Central Florida Regional Planning Council
“At Vanguard, you’ll meet artists and filmmakers, attorneys and financiers, coders and game developers. By the conference’s end, you’ll have a new optimism for the future of our cities and a new network of professionals who will help you make your own impact.”
Policy Advisor for the U.S. Social Security Administration and Director, Condesa Union
“As a member of the 2013 class that convened in Cleveland, and having returned as an alumni for 2014 in Chattanooga, I can’t say enough good things about Vanguard. It is an intimate and engaging experience that has offered me so many returns both times I have attended.
Mallory B.E. Baches
AICP, LEED-AP, CNU