T. Boone Pickens to Keynote NPA 2009 ‘Parking Show of Shows’America’s energy future – a hot-button topic during last year’s presidential election and one still fiercely debated at present – will take front and center stage during the 58th annual National Parking Association (NPA) Convention and Exposition, known as “The Parking Show of Shows.”
Slated for Oct. 12-15 at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center on the Potomac in National Harbor, Md., the event will kick off with a keynote address from T. Boone Pickens, titled, “It’s Time to Get Off Foreign Oil.”
Pickens – an entrepreneur, author and philanthropist – has gained widespread attention since introducing his “Pickens Plan,” a comprehensive energy plan aimed at reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil by harnessing domestic energy alternatives, including natural gas, wind and solar power. Since the Plan’s introduction in July 2008, more than 4.5 million people have signed up online to support it. Pickens’ New York Times bestseller, “The First Billion Is the Hardest,” details what the U.S. must do to win back its energy independence.
“We are thrilled that T. Boone Pickens will provide the keynote address at this year’s convention and exposition,” said Martin Stein, NPA President. “Mr. Pickens is an unrivaled expert on how energy and energy policy affect the economy. Both have a huge impact on the parking industry, and anyone whose business involves parking planning or development can benefit from hearing Mr. Pickens’ message and vision for the future.”
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, the U.S. spends more than $200,000 per minute on foreign oil, or $13 million per hour. More than $25 billion a year goes for Persian Gulf imports alone. Without a doubt, oil dependence affects both the economy and national security, reasons that Pickens has become a staunch advocate of clean energy.
Aside from creating the Pickens Plan, he serves as chairman of BP Capital Management, one of the nation’s most successful energy-oriented investment funds, and is the largest shareholder in Clean Energy, the most significant provider of vehicular natural gas in North America.
Pickens, however, will not be the only renowned expert speaking on the many issues affecting today’s parking industry. Business owners, consultants, attorneys and high-level executives from a variety of industries will speak on a multitude of relevant topics, including embracing new technologies, implementing service recovery programs, utilizing recruitment and hiring strategies, forging public/private partnerships, creating sustainable parking operations, providing leadership in a multi-site environment and strengthening communication ties with potential customers, vendors and employees.
The presentations will run Oct. 13-15, kicking off with Pickens’ keynote address at 8:30 a.m. on Oct. 13.
In conjunction with its annual convention and exposition, the NPA will serve as the Presenting Sponsor for the National Building Museum’s groundbreaking exhibition, titled “House of Cars: Innovation and the Parking Garage.” NPA members attending the full convention will have the opportunity to preview the exhibition at a special reception at the museum on Oct. 14 in Washington, DC. The exhibition will be open to the public from Oct. 17 through July 11, 2010. The NPA also will provide many of the exhibit artifacts through loans and donations provided by its members.
“We are delighted to be partnering with the National Building Museum on this important exhibit,” Stein said. “The evolution of the parking industry has transformed America. While most of us take parking structures for granted today, the history of parking is full of innovation and technological advances. This exhibition will celebrate those advances and their impact on our day-to-day lives.”
“House of Cars” is the first exhibition of its kind to explore parking garages and the parking industry. It will present the history of parking structures, from the first decades of the 20th century to the stylish and innovative buildings of today. The exhibition covers engineering, design and the future of parking. Its dynamic design and ideas are expected to engage visitors of all ages from around the country and the world.
The National Building Museum, created by an act of Congress in 1980, is a non-profit cultural institution dedicated to celebrating architecture, landscape architecture, design, engineering, construction and urban planning. To learn more about the exhibit, visit www.nbm.org.
For more information about the NPA’s annual convention and exposition, including a full list of speakers and registration information, go to www.npapark.org/events_convention.php.