Urban/Rural Divide In-Depth Week Panelists
Dr. David Peters
Iowa State University
Cass County Emergency management
Jefferson Matters Mainstreet
Iowa Health Care Association
Iowa League of Cities
Dr. Lisa Remy
School Administrators Iowa
Iowa Minnesota College Compact
President Kathy Franken
Upper Iowa University
Monday, August 21, 12 pm
Moderator: Zack Kucharski
Panelists: Dr. David Peters
Does the framing of an urban-rural divide in Iowa hold true, or does this framing of issues make it more difficult to find policy solutions? We’ll look at whether there are frameworks and ideas that could benefit both Iowa’s urban and rural areas.
Tuesday, August 22, 12 pm
Watch Replay Now: Maintaining Services in Rural Areas
Moderator: Erin Murphy
Panelists: Mike Kennon, Matt Wetrich, Brent Willett
Whether it’s health care, senior living or an attorney, how are communities working to keep services accessible to those who live there? What partnerships and policy solutions are helping or are needed to keep rural communities vibrant. We’ll focus on solutions that are being tried across the state in this session.
Wednesday, August 23, 12 pm
Watch Replay Now: New Idea to action
Moderator: Tom Barton
Panelists: Deb Brown, Becky McCray
How can you build support for a new idea and help open minds to it? And how can you harness the power to get new volunteers into the fold? We’ll talk to Iowa native Deb Brown and Becky McCray of Save Your Town who work with communities in Iowa and beyond on these questions.
Thursday, August 24, 12 pm
Watch Replay Now: Creative workforce solutions for urban and rural communities
Moderator: Erin Murphy
Panelists: Cassandra Hecker, Erin Mullenix
Workforce is tight in Iowa’s cities, but how can Iowa’s rural companies continue to grow? While changes in age opened up some opportunities, the number of occupations are limited. Can automation or policy decisions be of further help?
Friday, August 25, 12 pm
Watch Replay Now: Keeping education vibrant in rural communities
Moderator: Vanessa Miller
Panelists: Dr. Lisa Remy, Rob Barron, President Kathy Franken
With the majority of Iowa’s counties seeing population declines, the challenge to keep robust educational opportunities in communities is challenging. While Iowa Wesleyan closed in 2023, other higher education institutions are facing significant budget shortfalls. Meanwhile, many expressed concern about the health of rural school districts during changes to school choice laws.