The annual Antelope Valley Business Outlook Conference, hosted by Antelope Valley Board of Trade (AVBOT), will take place 7 a.m. to noon Feb. 28 in the H.W. Hunter Pavilion at the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds.

This year’s theme, “Building Careers—Building Communities,” will touch on the current state of education throughout the Antelope Valley, explore possible new and innovative approaches to education, identify specific areas of interest to stress in developing our future local workforce, and offer an outlook on the future of the valley’s economy from our local cities.

AVBOT is pleased to have two keynote speakers at this year’s event.

Critically acclaimed actor and New York Times best-selling author Henry Winkler, known for the iconic role of Arthur Fonzarelli (“The Fonz”) in the TV series “Happy Days,” has also written dozens of children’s novels inspired by his own struggle throughout his education due to his learning challenges.

Also taking the stage is George Couros, the division principal of Innovative Teaching and Learning for Parkland School Division. A leader in the area of innovation, his focus is the development of leadership and always doing what is best for kids. Through his mix of research, personal stories, and practical ways to implement new learning, he helps others feel comfortable in taking risks in their own learning.

Despite being bright, both of them found school very difficult, no matter how much they wanted to do well. That is because both Couros and Winkler have dyslexia—something that Winkler did not discover about himself until he was 31.

The goal of this year’s Outlook Conference is to promote strong local educational programs and opportunities that are a necessary element for attraction to a growing community.  Creating a vibrant local economy comes from the availability of a skilled and educated workforce.

AVBOT is working to enhance the relationship between local education institutions and economic development efforts to ensure the Antelope Valley remains competitive in attracting and retaining companies that can provide good, long-term, career opportunities.

For more than 60 years, AVBOT’s mission has been “to engage in maintaining and promoting diverse business and industry, quality infrastructures, and a strong legislative voice for the benefit of its members and the Greater Antelope Valley.”

For tickets or more information, call (661) 441-29567 or visit avbot.org.