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Latest News: National Service News

2008 National Conference on Volunteering and Service

Friday, April 18, 2008   (0 Comments)
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4,000 Will Convene in Atlanta for the Nation’s
Largest Gathering of Volunteer and Service Leaders

 Atlanta – Enthusiastic about the growing national momentum for service and civic action, organizers of the National Conference on Volunteering and Service expect more than 4,000 leaders to gather in Atlanta this June 1-3 to unleash a new wave of service and social entrepreneurship to meet social needs. 

The conference, cosponsored by the Points of Light & Hands On Network and the Corporation for National and Community Service, comes at a key time as national service is embraced in the Presidential campaign and as changing technologies and demographics are reshaping the volunteer landscape.

The conference is the nation’s largest gathering of service and volunteering leaders.  Organizers expect strong turnout from businesses, nonprofits and public agencies -- driven by growing interest in citizen service, a packed agenda of forums and workshops, and the attraction of Atlanta as a vibrant host city.

“More and more we are seeing a convergence of support from all sectors that service is the solution to our toughest challenges,” said David Eisner, CEO of the Corporation. “This conference will give a powerful jolt of new energy and ideas to help take our movement to even higher levels of impact and effectiveness.”

“Now is the time, and Atlanta is the place, to tap into the energy and entrepreneurship of a new generation of social innovators,” said Michelle Nunn, CEO of the recently merged Points of Light & Hands On Network.  “Our goal is to create a platform for transformational change that will put people at the center of community problem-solving.”

Featured speakers include John Lewis, civil rights icon and U.S. Congressman; Neil Bush, Chairman and CEO of Ignite! Learning; Sam Nunn, former Senator and currently chairman and CEO of the Nuclear Threat Initiative; and Stephen Goldsmith, former Indianapolis Mayor and Board Chair of the Corporation for National and Community Service.  Other high-profile speakers will be announced in the coming weeks. Attendees will learn new skills in volunteer management, connect with experts and peers, and set the future agenda for volunteering and service. 

This year’s conference will draw on Atlanta’s rich history as home to many leaders and organizations of the civil rights, social justice, and volunteer movements.  The conference theme, “The Urgency of Now,” is inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and is a call to action for a new generation of civic leaders to unleash the power of citizens to make a better world. 

“As a center of social innovation, Atlanta offers the perfect backdrop for this forward-thinking conference,” said Eric Tanenblatt of the McKenna Long & Aldridge international law firm.  Tanenblatt co-chairs the Atlanta host committee with Ann W. Cramer of North America IBM. “Atlanta is proud to host this important gathering and to welcome the nation’s leaders in service and civic engagement.”

Online registration is open at  More than 2,200 people have registered for this year’s conference.  Highlights include:

  • More than 175 workshops and forums focusing on a variety of topics from workplace volunteering to recruiting youth and Baby Boomers into community service.
  • For the first time, special tracks for managers and sponsors of two of the Corporation for National and Community Service’s largest programs – AmeriCorps and Senior Corps.
  • A CEO roundtable featuring top business leaders discussing corporate social responsibility, and a forum on the growth of pro-bono, skills-based volunteering featuring community relations directors from Target, Deloitte, the UPS Foundation and other leaders.
  • A closing Town Hall session on creating a bold new agenda for national and community service with top policymakers and thought leaders.
  • New immersion learning sessions where attendees will learn from local leaders and national experts at inspirational venues like the King Center, Ebenezer Baptist Church, and the Carter Center
  • A session designed for young social entrepreneurs to inspire, motivate, and educate millennial conference attendees and students from the Atlanta area. 
  • The Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Partnership Foundation will sponsor a partnership awards for campus-community collaboration, which will be presented as part of the immersion learning session at the Carter Center.

Corporate sponsors of the event are Coca Cola, Delta Airlines, Target, The Home Depot, UPS, Kaiser Permanente, Disney, KPMG, Washington Mutual, IBM, and Macy’s.

Points of Light & Hands On Network is a national nonprofit whose core mission is to inspire, equip and mobilize people to take action that changes the world.  More information on the organization is at

The Corporation for National and Community Service improves lives, strengthens communities, and fosters civic engagement through service and volunteering.  Each year the Corporation engages more than four million Americans of all ages and backgrounds in service to meet local needs through its Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America programs.  For more information, visit

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