With our early morning coffee in hand, we nervously cracked jokes and enjoyed the last part of a sunrise drive to Rembrandt Yard. With fingers crossed, we had our choice of parking spot in downtown Boulder at 5:30am hoping that others would show up too. Isn’t that the worry that every event planner seeks to silence at the start to an event? “I hope people remember to come.”
A year of preparing the right gear for a nonprofit technology conference like none other in Colorado had us mentally checking our packed list as we unloaded a fully packed Suburban. Training room bins complete with projectors, mac adapters, slide advancers, handouts and presenter information. Check. Our internal schedule of the day with a minute by minute play of volunteers, presenters, and keynote speaker details. Check. White boards for tech guru scheduling, a contact list of tech gurus complete with their volunteer time slot. Check. As the Suburban’s load lessened we looked around the now full art gallery in the morning sun.
Nonetheless, the Nonprofit Cultivation Center identified that there is an unmet gap in Boulder and Broomfield Counties in knowledge on how to move your nonprofit forward through technology. This is particularly gapping considering the booming tech sector in Boulder and the numerous nonprofit organizations. Why weren’t these sectors coming together more often to make each better?
The Technology Summit was born during a meeting two years ago when Foothills United Way was asked to brainstorm with IBM on how best to celebrate their Centennial through community service in Boulder County. Many IBMers wanted to volunteer their expertise in tech. It was a short brainstorm with a lot of ideas and in the process the seed for the Tech Summit was planted. In 2011, we did a morning conference on technology with 4 sessions and 8 tech experts to answer questions. There were 26 nonprofit participants. In 2012, we blew it up.
Nearly 3 times as many participants showed up to choose from 11 trainings. Nonprofit staff spent their day in an art gallery meeting with 1 of 15 tech experts, networking with exhibitors (and playing bingo!), hearing from Amadeus CEO Lisa Calkins over lunch, and most of all, learning how to best use technology to move their missions forward. The Nonprofit Cultivation Center is grateful for everyone who made the day a success including our sponsors.
Our nerves were quieted as nonprofits and tech professionals filled Rembrandt Yard. We enjoyed a seamless conference. Don’t take our word that the day was a success. We want to share some of the gracious comments we received in our evaluations last week.
I am the staff person that compiles the reports and does all website/technology/social media stuff in the office so I will be using this on a weekly, if not daily basis. Loved this training!
It was incredible to have a tech “guru” that was able to speak about technical stuff in a language that we could all understand. The fact that he had a sense of humor was completely a bonus. Throughout the hour plus discussion of HTML I had several “aha!” moments and so much of what I do on the organizational website makes sense now because I understand it from the HTML side. Awesome, awesome, awesome training session.
A GREAT value for nonprofits…I really appreciate the workshop and felt it was really important info! Thanks so much!!
Thanks for a great Tech Summit. The pieces of information I picked up will be extremely handy for our organization and keeping us moving forward in the tech world.
Overall one of the best single-day, professional development summits I have been to.
We are excited to build on this momentum. Save the date for next year’s Technology Summit on May 7, 2013!blog comments powered by Disqus