Skip to content

2017 Annual Conference

PWDA’s Annual Employment, Training & Education Conference convenes the workforce partners from Pennsylvania and throughout the region to share their work, learn from one another’s best practices, hear new ideas from thought leaders and industry experts, and network. Local workforce agencies and their partners have come to rely on this conference as the one-stop event for staff training and development, all held at a convenient, central location. PWDA’s conference remains one of the largest and most comprehensive workforce development conferences in the country.

Annual Conference Overview

You may register online or complete, print and mail or fax the printable registration form. Please contact PWDA at 717-612-1590 or if you have any questions or need assistance.

Keynote Speaker:
Steve Gilliland

Join Pittsburgh native and wildly successful, nationally renowned speaker, author, and businessman Steve Gilliland for the Opening Keynote at PWDA’s 33rd Annual Employment, Training & Education Conference.  Steve’s message Making a Difference will kick off the conference at 11:30 am on Wednesday, May 10Focusing on the conscious choices we make every day that impact the lives of others, Making a Difference™ is an eye-opening and heartfelt keynote detailing how to positively influence people in every imaginable way, regardless of position or status. Each of us has the potential to transform the culture of an organization through our actions and attitude. This presentation centers on three empowering dynamics: Purpose: It drives you! Passion: It fuels you! Pride: It defines you!  We expect a full house, so arrive early to be sure you don’t miss this engaging opening event.

State Executive Partner Panel
Four state executive-level leaders who directly impact workforce development policy will join PWDA’s Annual Conference on Thursday, May 11 at 8:00 am for a facilitated discussion about their unprecedented efforts to remove barriers to service integration. What changes can the workforce development community expect as the State WIOA Plan unfolds and WIOA final implementation occurs? How will policy changes impact your work at the local level?

Learn this and much more from this distinguished panel of state executive partners, pictured below from left-right: Deputy Secretary for Workforce Development Eileen Cipriani, Secretary of Human Services Ted Dallas, Secretary of Community and Economic Development Dennis Davin, Secretary of Education Pedro Rivera.


Closing Speaker:
Elisabeth Sanders-Park

Meet America’s ‘Tough Career Transitions Expert.’ For more than 15 years, Elisabeth Sanders-Park has led the field in bringing career development training to workforce professionals, and is dedicated to helping service providers get great results for clients with barriers to employment. Drawing from her book, No One is Unemployable, one of the LA Times’ Top 10 Career Books of the Year, Elisabeth will offer both new and seasoned professionals a fresh perspective and practical approaches to make immediate and long-term differences for clients. As a consultant to workforce, human service, and non-profit agencies, Elisabeth has helped to establish more than 150 programs across the United States and Australia, ultimately impacting the lives of many job seekers. Known for her signature blend of relentless hope and practicality, Elisabeth’s presentation is bound to be filled with ‘aha’ moments and effective tips and techniques you will actually look forward to using.

Workshops are announced
This year’s slate knocks it out of the park! Powered with speakers that span the workforce training, education, and opportunity spectrum, our “menu” of 65 workshops among six rounds spanning two jam-packed days offers choices that will satisfy your great expectations!  

Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Round One
Round Two

Thursday, May 11, 2017
Round Three
Round Four
Round Five
Round Six

Gain exposure through Exhibits, Advertising and Sponsorships 
Maximize your exposure to nearly 1,000 participants, including workforce and employment professionals, educators and trainers, employers, officials from the U.S. Department of Labor and PA Departments of Labor & Industry, Human Services, Community and Economic Development, Education, Aging and others. More information is found in the Vendor Brochure. Contact Tammy K Linn at to discuss a customized plan that will work for your organization.
Hotel Reservations
All conference events are held at the Hershey Lodge. To make hotel reservations and receive the conference rate of $162 (single or double) plus tax, use the lodge link or call 1-855-729-3108 . Indicate that you are with the PA Workforce Development Association 2017 Annual Conference. PWDA’s room block was released on April 10, reservations will be accepted on a space and rate available basis.

2017 Virtual Partner Showcase

PA Workforce Development Association