Beyond The Boardroom – Leaders to Address Closing the Skills Gap Across Various Industries

Gilbert, Arizona’s fall 2014 Mayor’s Ambassador Forum will focus on
Growing Gilbert’s Workforce


Hosts: Gilbert Mayor John W. Lewis and the Gilbert Office of Economic Development


  • Guest Speaker – Congressman Matt Salmon
  • Patrick Banger, Town Manager, Town of Gilbert
  • Cathleen Barton, Education Manager, Intel
  • Gene Feldman, Owner, Nexus Steel
  • Jim Hayden, President & CEO, Board Developer
  • Dr. Maria Hesse, Vice Provost for Academic Partnerships, Arizona State University
  • Dr. Christina Kishimoto, Superintendent, Gilbert Public Schools


Gilbert Mayor, John W. Lewis, will host the bi-annual Gilbert Mayor’s Ambassador Forum in which leaders  gather to discuss solving pressing issues to the community at large. This forum will focus on addressing programs and collaborative efforts that are needed between Gilbert, educational institutions and businesses, in order to close current and future skills gaps.


Gilbert Council Chambers
50 E. Civic Center Drive, Gilbert, Arizona 85296


Thursday, September 25, 2014 from 7:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.


The ambassador forum will act as a conduit to providing programs that meet the needs of the community and greater Phoenix.

According to the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities, Thirteen million Americans are currently unemployed, and more than 90 million are undereducated and unprepared for the 21st century workforce. Additionally, they sourced that The U.S. Department of Labor predicts a shortage of more than 35 million skilled and educated workers over the next 30 years.

As one of the Nation’s Fastest Growing Communities (Arizona Republic, 2014), Gilbert is taking a proactive approach to ensure that with growth it does not become a “bedroom community”. By working together with educational and business leaders, Gilbert is ensuring employers’ needs for labor, from entry level to executive, are being met. Additionally, the community is able to come together to create programs that arm residents with the necessary skill set to find work in the community in which they live.

Amanda Elliott
Marketing & Public Relations, Gilbert, Arizona Office of Economic Development


About Gilbert, Arizona

Located in the southeast valley of the Phoenix metropolitan area, Gilbert, Arizona has a resident base of 225,000 and is nationally recognized as the 33rd best place to live in the nation (CNN/Money Magazine, 2012); 2nd safest community in the nation (FBI Crime Statistics, 2013); 8th Most Thriving City in the United States (The Daily Beast, 2013). The community promotes commercial investment opportunities for innovation-based industries such as aerospace and defense; biotechnology and life science; clean technology and alternative energy; and high-tech manufacturing. For more information, contact or visit You can also follow Gilbert’s Office of Real Estate & Economic Development on Twitter @GilbertAZEcoDev.