EDC Roundtable Symposiums

The EDC Roundtable is a symposium focused on providing EDC members, county and city officials, military delegates, and guests a unique networking opportunity with a keynote speaker. In previous years, high profiles speakers have included a representative from the Federal Reserve Bank, the Florida Department of Transportation Director to the Florida Secretary of Commerce. 

DC's morning roundtable event provides a buffet breakfast and approximately 200 community leaders attend these informative morning symposiums.


Brain Chasing: Talent Attraction as a Community Strategy

On March 4, 2019, guests gained valuable insight on what drives workforce today. Talent Attraction is but one way to solve a community’s talent shortage.  Talent Cultivation (undertaken by schools, colleges and universities) and Talent Retention (making certain that a larger percentage of new graduates and exiting military remain here) are equally important, and our community is fortunate to have some outstanding partnerships focused on these opportunities.  The event was held at The Island, by Hotel RL. The event was moderated by Dr. David Goetsch and panelists included: Eric Walker, EMSI; Michele Burns, CareerSource Okaloosa Walton; and Matt Zimmermann, Beast Code LLC. 

The Signature Sponsor for this event was Gulf Power. A special thank you to: Gulf Reflections Photography Studio, The Island, by Hotel RL and the Choctaw High School JROTC.

New Leadership for a New Age: Higher Education

March-2017-Roundtable-Speaker-Picture.jpgOn March 21, 2017, the EDC of Okaloosa County welcomed new leadership to two of our county’s largest post-secondary educational institutions. Panelists included: Dr. Martha Saunders, President of the University of West Florida, and Dr. Devin Stephenson, President of Northwest Florida State College.

The Signature Sponsor for this event was BBVA Compass Bank. A special thank you to: Gulf Reflections Photography Studio, the Ramada Plaza Beach Resort and the Choctaw High School JROTC.

The Sacred Trust: Military Support Organizations and our Great American Defense Community

Sept-2016-Roundtable-Community.jpgOn September 21, 2016, the EDC of Okaloosa County hosted a roundtable breakfast to celebrate our community’s recent designation as a “Great American Defense Community.” Panelists included: Alan Baggett – Executive VP, Building Industry Association of Okaloosa & Walton Counties; Teresa Halverson – President, Fisher House Emerald Coast; Robert Foster – Director, Venture Hive; and Linda Sumblin – Executive Director, CareerSource Okaloosa Walton. 

The Signature Sponsor for this event was Eglin Federal Credit Union. A special thank you to: Gulf Reflections Photography Studio and the Ramada Plaza Beach Resort.

Building a Healthy Okaloosa: Perspectives from the Healthcare C-Suite

Healthcare-Roundtable-2016.jpgOn May 24, 2016, the EDC of Okaloosa County hosted a roundtable breakfast  where guests gained valuable insight on the challenges and opportunities driving healthcare today.
Panelists included: Alan Gieseman – CEO, White Wilson Medical Center; Daniel Cobbs – CEO, Bridgeway Center Inc.; Dave Whalen – CEO, Twin Cities Hospital; Mitch Mongell – CEO, Fort Walton Beach Medical Center; Roger Hall – President, Sacred Heart Emerald Coast; Ronnie Daves –  CEO, North Okaloosa Medical Center
A big thanks to our sponsors: Bay State Cable Ties, CHELCO, Soundside Wellness Consultants, and Warren Averett. A special thank you to: COX Communications, Gulf Reflections Photography Studio, Ramada Plaza Beach Resort 

Community Events

May 16, 2019
SBIR/STTR Tech Showcase  - presented by Doolittle Institute.  8:00 am – 5:00 pm at the Doolittle Institute at 1140 John Sims Pkwy E, Suite 1, in Niceville.  Submit your Small Business Innovation Research(SBIR) or Small Business Technology Transfer(STTR) technology poster and present your ideas, technologies, or products to an audience of other companies, investors, and government contracting officials.  Jim Greenwood will host a SBIR Proposal Writing Workshop and a Cost Accounting Workshop.  You’ll have the opportunity to participate in an Air Force SBIR Program Manager Meetup and a Commercialization Readiness Program Q&A Session.  First 35 to register will receive a free review of their proposal by Jim Greenwood.  Six registrants will receive a free Commercialization Readiness one-on-one. In addition, there will be a TH!NK SBIR Event that will run concurrently.  For more information, please contact Steven Bailey at  Registration:  

May 18, 2019
Rock United Music Fest - A family-friendly, day-long music festival on the lawn at the Mattie Kelly Cultural Arts Village featuring favorite local bands, food vendors, and a fun kids' zone. Tickets are $10 and kids 10 and under are free. The United Way is celebrating donors, advocates and volunteers, and supporting our Community Partners with the announcement of 2019-2020 Community Impact Grant Funding and "Big Check" presentations on stage! Purchase tickets Here

May 22, 2019
Economic Gardening: Cultivating Sustainable Entrepreneur Support Initiatives - The EDC Roundtable is a symposium focused on providing EDC members, county and city officials, military delegates, and guests a unique networking opportunity with a keynote speaker. The May 2019 Event will feature Jason Hamman of Hamman Consulting Group who will present the findings of the Okaloosa Incubator Feasibility Study. Attendees will also hear from local Entrepreneur support networks across the region such as Co:Lab, the Gulf Coast State College Business Innovation Center and TechFarms Capital. Registration is $25 or $20 for EDC members. Pre-registration is required

May 27, 2019
34th Annual Eglin Memorial Day Gate to Gate Run -  Everyone is welcome to participate in this 4.4-mile run/walk held on Memorial Day. As one of Northwest Florida’s oldest Memorial Day traditions, the competitive race is open to runners of all ages and skill levels. There will also be a free kids' run after the start of the main race. Flowers will be provided for each runner to drop at the All-Wars Memorial along the route. Stay for the post-race party at the finish line featuring live entertainment, food, and refreshments. The 4.4-mile course starts at Unity Park, follows Eglin Boulevard to Memorial Trail and ends back at Unity Park.  Participants may register online at

May 30, 2019
Embry-Riddle Ft Walton Beach 2019 Industry/Career Expo - Meet and network with representatives from dozens of first-rate employers.  Connect with quality employers in the aviation, government and non-profit sector recruiting Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University students, graduates and alumni for co-op/internships and full-time positions. This event is available to all Embry-Riddle students and alumni seeking co-op/internships and full-time employment.  Professional attire is required and attendees are welcomed to connect at the event with WW Career Services advisors to preview their resume. Attendees may also activate and/or update their Handshake profile (replacing EagleHire) during the event. The event will be held at The Island, by Hotel RL from 10 AM to 3 PM. Learn more

June 1, 2019
12th Annual Crestview Chamber Health and Wellness Expo - presented by Crestview Area Chamber of Commerce. 9 am to noon.  This free event for people of all ages will be held at the Crestview Community Center located on Commerce Drive, next to the Bob Sikes Library.  Various health care screenings, services and information will be available.  There will be door prizes, family entertainment and a snack bar. If you have any questions, please contact the Crestview Chamber at (850)682-3212 or email at

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