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The Tennessee Valley Corridor (TVC) will hold the 22nd annual TVC Summit at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center (USSRC) May 31-June 1. The Summit, themed “Huntsville and the TVC: Smart. Innovative. Collaborative.” will bring together more than 300 business, academic and community leaders from the five-state region.

Hosted by Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle and USSRC CEO Dr. Deborah Barnhart, the Summit will include four main sessions focused on Huntsville’s and NASA’s role in the region, the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit throughout the TVC and the federal missions in the region.

Here are five things to know about the 2017 Summit:

  1. More than 40 speakers, ranging from university and community college presidents to entrepreneurs to top leaders of the region’s federal contractors, will speak at the 22nd annual TVC Summit. Astronaut Butch Wilmore, who is one of the scheduled speakers at the 2017 Summit, will be the second NASA Astronaut to participate in a Summit. The first was Eileen Collins who spoke at the 2003 Summit in Huntsville.
  1. The Summit theme changes each year based on the location where it is held. Themes have covered a variety of topics ranging from sustainable communities, next generation transportation solutions and regional resiliency to energy security, education and entrepreneurship, but all have one thing in common—they are designed to help the TVC achieve National Leadership through Regional Cooperation.
  1. This is the fourth TVC Summit to be held in Huntsville. The TVC has also held two smaller, Fall Partnership Events (FPE) in Huntsville. Summits and FPEs have also been held in Oak Ridge, Knoxville, Cookeville, Chattanooga, Johnson City, Kingsport, Murfreesboro and Nashville, Tennessee; Somerset, Kentucky; Asheville, North Carolina; and Washington, D.C.
  1. The TVC sessions are often hosted by representatives from its 35-person board of directors that includes leaders from throughout the region. Two TVC board members have served on the organization’s governing body since the TVC was incorporated in the early 1990s – current board chair Steve Cope, director of business development for Avion Solutions, Inc. in Huntsville who resides in Tullahoma, and board treasurer Mike Arms from Knoxville.
  1. Congressional participation in the TVC has been one of its strengths since its inception. The organization is supported by a 10-member TVC Congressional Caucus that is co-chaired by Congressmen Phil Roe (TN-1) and Chuck Fleischmann (TN-3) and includes Congressmen Robert Aderholt (AL-), Mo Brooks (AL-5), Hal Rodgers (KY-5), Morgan Griffith (VA-9), Mark Meadows (NC-11), Diane Black (TN-6), Scott DesJarlais (TN-4) and John J. Duncan, Jr. (TN-2). The largest number of U.S. Congressmen to attend a TVC Summit was eight in 1998 in Kingsport – Summit planners are working hard to match to exceed that number in 2017.

The TVC is supported year-round by its Leadership Council, which includes CNS Y-12, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee Valley Authority, the University of Tennessee, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Oak Ridge Associated Universities, Tennessee Tech, Teledyne Brown Engineering, UCOR, Morris Creative Group and the U.S. Space and Rocket Center.

Sponsors of the TVC Summit to-date include: Presenting Sponsors—Aerojet Rocketdyne, Cummings Research Park, Dynetics, Jacobs, Teledyne Brown Engineering and the U.S. Space and Rocket Center; Contributing Sponsors—Aerospace Park: Tri Cities Airport; Boeing; Energy, Technology, and Environmental Business Association; Iris Networks; Middle Tennessee State University and Roane State Community College; Supporting Sponsors—Auburn Research; Energy Huntsville; Materials and Chemistry Laboratory, Inc.; Information International Associates; Mesa Associates, Radiance Technologies; SunTrust; Torch Technologies, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama and Victory Solutions; Friends of the TVC—Center for Rural Development; Chambliss Law Firm; DESE Research, Inc.; Nuclear Fuel Services; StrataG and Tennessee Strategies.

Registration is open and sponsorship opportunities are available for the TVC Summit. For more information and to register, please visit TennValleyCorridor.org.

About the Tennessee Valley Corridor:

The Tennessee Valley Corridor (TVC), a 501-c-6 organization, represents 10 congressional districts in East and Middle Tennessee, North Alabama, Western North Carolina, Southwest Virginia and Eastern Kentucky. The TVC encourages regional cooperation to grow and attract federal missions and to leverage these investments for private sector economic development through tech transfer, entrepreneurial activities, and engagement with the region’s universities and community colleges.