Opening remarks to the 2022 Concordia Americas Summit.
Carmen Castillo, President & Chief Executive Officer of SDI International Corp. delivers remarks for Day 1 of the 2022 Concordia Americas Summit.
Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón, Ph.D., President Emeritus of Miami Dade College, delivers Keynote Remarks to open the 2022 Concordia Americas Summit.
Corrupt ports and Free Trade Zones around the world enable cartels and other criminal organizations to transport illegal goods, expand their illicit international trade, export criminality and violence, and launder the revenues of their illegal activities. The strategic dialogue will bring together representatives from the private and public sectors to address the detrimental effects of illicit trade on ports, economic security, and global supply chains. The objective of this session is to address the issue and the vital importance of creating public-private partnerships in order to combat the problem and boost security and enforcement. While no single entity can solve the problem alone, building long-lasting partnerships based on shared goals, in-depth expertise of the situation, and resources may be the best approach to succeed.
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Education and accreditation is critical to the upward mobility of refugees and migrants entering into the U.S. and Europe. AidLive, an organization created by young entrepreneurs in response to the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, has partnered with WestField Business School in designing professional development programs catered towards meeting the needs of migrants in Latin America, in order to equip them with the necessary skills to become future global leaders. As such, this fireside chat featuring AidLive’s Executive Director, will explore this partnership-based approach to meaningful employment and enhancing access to critical services for migrant communities within Latin America.
Recent financial expansion in Latin America, stemming from technological development and increasingly favorable financial policies, has highlighted the region’s untapped financial potential. With a significant demand for new financial technology and infrastructure in many Latin American countries, this increase marks just the beginning of a surge in financial potential within Latin America. This panel, composed of financial experts and executives with both private and public sector experience, will discuss the future prospects for financial development and increased commercial activity in Latin America.
In opening the critical topic of Environmental Sustainability, Benjamin Backer, Founder & President of the American Conservation Coalition (ACC), will provide insight into the best practices for local governments and municipalities to adapt cities into ‘climate-smart’ urban spaces across the hemisphere, using the city of Miami as a primary case study and the ongoing work of the ACC’s Southeast Florida branch as a practical model.
With climate change threatening Latin American countries’ economies and energy accessibility, environmental sustainability remains a critical issue for private and public sector leaders. Potential solutions to mitigate climate change lie within promoting new, environmentally sustainable practices across both sectors through international climate agreements as well as private initiatives that utilize technology to reduce overall waste and improve access to low-cost clean energy. This panel composed of policymakers and private sector innovators will discuss how Latin American governments and businesses can collectively promote environmental sustainability in all areas of society in order to maximize long-term socioeconomic prosperity and access to low-cost energy within the region.
Since 2000, China has rapidly increased its presence in South America. From energy to infrastructure, pandemic relief, and even space programs, Chinese investment has grown exponentially in South American economies. China has even surpassed the United States as South America’s largest trading partner, and has strengthened its military ties with nations like Venezuela. This growing influence is cause for concern for the United States and its allies who fear that geopolitical influence in the region will give China too much power. This session, featuring experts on China and South America, will discuss the history between the regions, and what this burgeoning influence will mean for the future of the international political landscape.
As several countries across the Western Hemisphere, particularly within Latin America, are experiencing low levels of healthcare expenditure and direct investment, coupled with a scarcity of qualified healthcare professionals, the region’s healthcare systems are facing significant challenges amidst the pressures of a post-pandemic world. As such, the hemisphere is at a critical juncture of both need and opportunity to stimulate positive changes, primarily in countries with disproportionate access to basic care and essential services. Through mediums including the deployment of new technology, intra-regional programs for medical training, and cross-sector partnerships, this panel will discuss the most pressing challenges in the healthcare sector and how to navigate potential solutions for future durability.
As nations attempt to recover from the health and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, many are looking for innovative methods to bolster this recovery, and install infrastructure for continued resilience. Reflecting on lessons learned during the first years of the pandemic, this session will bring together distinguished leaders for a timely conversation on how nations can effect strong recovery for health systems and economies, and evaluate the impact of the continued pandemic.
While the past few decades have witnessed increased political leadership among women within the Americas and the Caribbean, women’s access to political power and resources remain limited within a traditionally male-dominated field. Not only does greater female governmental representation promote greater opportunities for women’s rights within society, but data revealing women’s greater willingness to compromise highlights female policymakers as key assets in promoting legislative efficiency. This fireside chat, featuring H.E. Luis Almagro Lemes, Secretary-General of the Organization of American States, will discuss the importance of ensuring an equal voice for women in political leadership.
For nations to thrive during times of turbulence in the international community enhanced regional cooperation is required. Regional cooperation and increased geographical ties can lead to strong economic development, and create more expansive, durable trade lines. Enhanced regional cooperation doesn’t just result in economic growth; it allows nations to have stronger responses to challenges such as pandemics, climate change, and migration. This session, featuring distinguished leaders, will explore the importance of regional cooperation in bolstering economic growth and crises response.
As the international order continues to shift away from the previous system characterized by undisputed U.S. dominance, Latin America remains a key region in determining the future security of the Western Hemisphere. The exponential increase of technological innovation and globalization has generated a new security landscape defined by traditional and new, gray-zone security threats. This panel comprised of chief military officials and policymakers will discuss the current realities of security challenges in the Western Hemisphere to provide greater insight toward effectively ensuring security interests within the region.
In a rapidly changing world, youth engagement is more important than ever. The Western hemisphere is facing dramatic political, economic, and societal shifts that will have long-standing effects on the region. As nations look for innovative ways to engage younger generations, one avenue stands out: sports. People of all ages and backgrounds can engage through sports, and use their platforms as athletes to enact positive change. This session will reflect on the unifying power of sports in the Americas and hear from student-athlete leaders on the importance of sports in creating social impact. Speakers include: - José R. Mas, Chief Executive Officer, MasTec; Co-Owner, Inter Miami - Demetrius Jackson, Former Miami Hurricanes Defensive End, University of Miami - Debbie Ajagbe, All-American Miami Hurricanes Thrower, University of Miami - Lou Hedley, Hurricanes Punter, University of Miami; Co-Founder, Canes Worldwide - Karla Erjavec, Basketball guard and FIBA Women’s EuroBasket Competitor, University of Miami
Despite significant strides toward democracy over the past two decades, the future of democracy in Latin America remains uncertain as increased corruption, human rights abuses, and economic inequality have deteriorated many Latin Americans’ perceptions toward democracy, leading to democratic regression in certain governments. This panel composed of distinguished Latin American leaders will discuss the current condition of democracy throughout Latin America as well as the steps that world leaders should take to better ensure a bright future for democracy in the region.
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The Honorable Francis Suarez, Mayor of the City of Miami, Florida delivers the closing Keynote Address for Day 1 of the 2022 Concordia Americas Summit.
Concordia gives closing remarks to Day 1 of the Concordia Americas Summit.
Andrew Hecker, PortMiami's Deputy Director & CFO, delivers the opening remarks for Day 2 of the Concordia Americas Summit, highlighting PortMiami's commercial presence and strategic importance as a conduit for international trade across the Western Hemisphere.
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In recent years, mining companies in Latin America have built best practices in their engagement with local communities and stakeholders, while at times failing to protect the local environment where they operate, suffering economic and reputational damage. Alternative energy companies have a more positive environmental impact, but they've neglected to adequately engage with local communities to build social acceptance, tarnishing their image. What lessons and best practices in the "E" and "S" in "ESG" can mining and alternative energy companies share as they pursue new opportunities in the Americas?
Though gender-lens investing has consistently proved effective in advancing the overall financial stability and performance of a community, as equitable investing in women creates a multiplier effect for families and countries across the Americas, opportunities for digital upskilling and economic mobility in the Northern Triangle and Southern Mexico remain disproportionately low. As such, marginalized groups in these societies lack the necessary access to capital, pathways to employment in technical and digital fields, or financially inclusive mechanisms. In turn, such socio-economic conditions result in ongoing waves of irregular and forced migration, as women are deprived of equitable opportunities for development and sustainable growth. In response, Google.org has partnered with Pro Mujer, a social enterprise focused on advancing gender equality in Latin America, to strengthen the ecosystem for minority-owned businesses and women-led microenterprises. This timely panel, featuring policy experts and executives from both organizations will focus on elevating approaches to promote economic opportunity for women across the Northern Triangle and Southern Mexico, and will explore the integral role of cross-sector partnerships in doing so.
With small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) representing approximately 90% of the world’s businesses, SMEs serve as a central pillar in efforts to recenter the global economy around more sustainable business practices. Nonetheless, the lack of surplus capital available for both SMEs and minority-owned businesses can limit their ability to effectively implement such sustainability initiatives, particularly compared to big businesses. As transformative socio-economic change requires a community-based approach, this timely fireside chat featuring Siemens Financial Services' President and CEO Anthony Casciano and Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Castillo, will provide insight into how to unlock the full development potential of SMEs and will discuss the importance of public-private partnerships in doing so.
This session will explore the necessary innovation and transformation required by a multitude of sectors in order to accelerate collective progress towards an improved consumption model. With a focus on regulation as a means for both consumer protection and market creation, this timely discussion will convene experts from global industries as well as policy makers.
Mental health affects over a billion people worldwide, and there is a suicide in the US every 17 minutes. However, discussing mental health remains stigmatized, especially for executives and high performers — who are more likely to struggle with it, and less likely to seek help. In this riveting talk, Beth shares her own journey and how we can embrace our personal stories in a way that lets us grow, succeed, and help others.
While significant medical advances have been made in the battle against cancer, the fight is far from over. Greater emphasis must be placed on providing aid to those living with cancer, and ending the disease as a whole. The fight against cancer, and other deadly diseases, is a cause that all citizens should aid. Multi-sector efforts are crucial in this fight, and organizations like the Promise Fund of Florida are helping to move past symbolic actions to create meaningful progress towards ending cancer. Most recently, President Biden has reignited the Cancer Moonshot program, with the goals of reducing annual deaths by half in the next 25 years through improved access to screening and treatment. This Fireside Chat featuring Ambassador Nancy Brinker, co-founder of the Promise Fund of Florida, will discuss the importance behind the Cancer Moonshot program, her work with the Promise Fund of Florida to improve health equity and access for at-risk women and women of color in Florida, and how their model can be utilized to combat cancer in other communities around the world.
The Honorable Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Representative of Florida's 23rd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, delivers Keynote Remarks at the 2022 Concordia Americas Summit.
Though mental health has been underfunded, socially stigmatized and underappreciated as a policy priority in societies well before the COVID-19 pandemic, we are now at a critical juncture of both need and opportunity to effectively address this ongoing crisis. From increased rates of depression and social anxiety disorder (SAD) among younger demographics, to the systematic burnout among health care professionals and essential workers, the wake of the pandemic has provided fertile grounds for cross-sector collaboration to drastically improve access to cognitive therapy and novel medications, enhance public awareness on the matter, and advance critical initiatives to support collective mental health. As such, this timely fireside chat featuring Dr. Vivek Murthy and Shawn Singh will explore how the public and private sectors can most optimally work together to address the many facets of the mental health crisis.
Sofía Jirau, the first Victoria's Secret model with Down syndrome, shares her experience becoming a model and entrepreneur, and delivers a message of how there are no limits to fulfill our dreams.
While technology can be an invaluable tool for strengthening freedom of speech and giving a voice to traditionally marginalized groups, it can also amplify misinformation, give organizations an instrument to influence populations, and obstruct the democratic process. The role of technology has especially come into question in recent elections around the world. This conversation, featuring technology leaders from the public and private sectors, will discuss the benefits and dangers of technology in democracy, and what the technological future of the democratic process might look like. Sponsored by the Knight Foundation, it is the culmination of a three-part series suggesting a coalition to champion the use of technology to strengthen democracy.
On top of the violence and poverty that already plague Central America, the region has recently been hit hard by natural disasters, including drought and severe hurricanes. This has destroyed already fragile livelihoods and has tripled food insecurity in many countries, especially the Northern Triangle countries ofEl Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. Combined with the aftermath of COVID-19, plus rising inflation and food prices, the already fragile life of the residents of these countries has now become dire. In recent years, forced migration from Central America has become a crisis that needs to be urgently addressed. Vulnerable families are now pressed far beyond their limits as the perfect storm of crises continues to rage. Jorge Galeano, World Vision Country Director for Honduras and Guatemala, describes the effective interventions that World Vision deploys to provide HOPE at Home. Through innovative programs, World Vision is addressing the root causes of migration by building improved and resilient livelihoods in agriculture, food security, and child well-being, utilizing digital technologies as an early warning system for migration, addressing climate change, providing access to clean water, integrating and leading on gender equality and inclusion, and increasing opportunities for employment and entrepreneurship. World Vision recognizes that partnerships are necessary to address the pressing issues that face Latin America and Jorge invites others to join in this important work to provide hope at home to mitigate migration.
As Latin America continues to undergo substantial industrial and trade policy reforms, propelled by waves of economic liberalization, the region increasingly represents an area of high-growth potential for a multitude of sectors. Although investment, manufacturing, and flows of services are increasing both intra-regionally and with the United States, further regional cooperation and direct development is required in order to unlock the region's full capacity. Particularly with supply chain issues highlighting the value of nearshoring and friendshoring practices to maintain reliable trading networks, Latin America emerges as a key region for trade partnerships with the United States. As such, this timely panel composed of government officials, policy experts, and private sector leaders will discuss opportunities for accelerating long-term economic growth across the Western Hemisphere.
Stewart D. McLaurin, President of the White House Historical Association, delivers remarks on the morning programming sessions of Day 2 of the 2022 Concordia Americas Summit.
The Legacy of the 2022 World Cup has been an integral part of the tournament since the bid’s inception. Through initiatives such as sustainability in construction, community engagement on stadiums and their legacy plans, Generation Amazing’s Human and Social Development programmes and B4 Development, the tournament has robust plans for the tournament and the future. This session, featuring health and sports leaders, will explore the partnership between Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy’s Generation Amazing, B4D and CONCACAF over the next four years, to ensure that the legacy of the World Cup 2022 QatarTM impacts disenfranchised people around the world beyond the last kicked ball.
As Latin America continues to experience large-scale displacement and irregular flows of migration, propelled largely by two trajectories - from the central American ‘Northern Triangle’ countries of Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala across Mexico to the United States, and from Venezuela to neighboring South American nations - the humanitarian crisis persists as a result of ongoing ‘push’ factors such as political repression, economic hardship, and sustained violence. As such, this panel composed of policy experts and activists will discuss the importance of cross-sector cooperation in alleviating this humanitarian crisis, and will explore the different ways to support the resettlement and social integration of refugees, on a country-basis and regional-basis.
The Western Hemisphere is facing a crisis of democratic backsliding. From suppression of free speech, widespread corruption, and increased populist sentiment to fully-fledged dictatorships, democratic ideals in the Western Hemisphere are under grave threat. Culminating in the January 6th insurrection upon the U.S. Capitol, states across the region are suffering from democratic backsliding and weakening institutions. Immediate action must therefore be taken to prevent the further reduction of democratic rights and freedoms of citizens. This timely panel, featuring human rights advocates and policy experts from different sectors, will discuss the current state of democracy across the Western Hemisphere, with a focus on upholding international human rights norms.
Women make up nearly half of the world's population, but they are largely absent from national security debates. Conflict, on the other hand, is gendered and has vastly different effects on men, women, girls, and boys. As a result, in order to achieve more effective policies and long-term solutions, we must acknowledge the critical role of female voices in national security discussions. This session will delve into the role of women in national security––both uniformed and non-uniformed––and what more can be done to ensure diversity in positions of national security decision making.
Concordia gives closing remarks to the 2022 Americas Summit.