CINCINNATI — “Surviving and Thriving in Today’s Construction Industry” is the theme and focus of the 9th Annual National Conference of Construction Owners, being held at the Buena Vista Palace Hotel in Orlando, Fla., Nov. 16-18, 2009. The Construction Users Roundtable (CURT), sponsor of the conference, is an association of leading organizations in the United States dedicated to the promotion of cost-effective construction methods. CURT members spend more than $160 billion annually on construction services.

“The construction industry is the largest employer in the country and the bedrock of our nation’s economy,” noted Egon Larsen, CURT president and global construction manager for Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. “This is a key time for the industry, with a high percentage of government stimulus dollars dedicated to construction activities, the industry is poised to lead the country out of the current recession.”

Given the vital role that the construction industry has to play at this point in America’s history, the 2009 CURT conference offers a wide range of keynote and panel presentations by some of the key names in the industry today. The focused charge behind all presentations is to provide practical solutions for construction users in today’s economy. For example, Vice Admiral Michael K. Loose, The U.S. Navy’s deputy chief of Naval Operations for Fleet Readiness & Logistics, will speak about how CURT and the industry help the U.S. Navy delivery fleet readiness. David Wyss, chief economist at Standard and Poors, will address “The Global Marketplace in Recession: The Big Picture.”

Frank T. MacInnis, chairman and CEO of EMCOR Group, Inc., will speak on “Beyond BIM: Excellence In The Creation and Protection of Capital Assets.” “Strategic Use of Capital in Today’s Markets” will be presented by a team from Abbott, DuPont, Johnson & Johnson, and Intel.

“How Federal Construction Spending Is Impacting The Industry: Public Owners Speak Out” is the culmination of the work from representatives from U.S. Department of State, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Bureau of Prisons, and the General Services Administration. Erik Wahl, noted artist and speaker, will present “The Art of Vision,” communicating how to achieve greater levels of performance through breakthrough thinking to gain extraordinary results.

There will be additional educational sessions held throughout the conference that focus on a number of construction issues, including construction economics, legal issues, integrated technology solutions, and scheduling. Speakers include economists and construction experts from the Associated General Contractors, Associated Builders and Contractors, FMI, and the American Institute of Architects.

The conference will close with a presentation from Lisa Spahn of The Disney Institute, on “Surviving and Thriving in These Turbulent Times.”

“This year’s Conference for Construction Owners will allow attendees to share best practices and workable solutions that enable them to prepare to prosper in the post-recession economy and beyond,” Larson said. “It has been purposefully designed as a must-attend event for all construction industry leaders.”

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