One of the first things the 400+ attendees of the 2020 PA Brownfield Conference saw was the welcome banner sponsored by BCONE.
The event held at State College, PA was well attended, had great information and energy, and was one of the last large gatherings before we all started hunkering down to slow this virus. Kudos to the Conference organizers and staff on a great conference, especially PADEP and the Engineer’s Society of Western Pennsylvania.
BCONE’s leaders were moderators, speakers, exhibitors, sponsors, and conference track chairs. Here is a quick look at the breadth and depth of topics covered by BCONE Board Members, Emeritus Members of the Board, BCONE Committee Chairs, and your staff:
- BCONE Board President, Rick Shoyer of Advanced GeoServices Corporation moderated and spoke on the panel entitled PFAS and Brownfield Redevelopment: Risk Management. It was standing room only.
- Board members John Gross of PADEP chaired the sessions on Rebuilding Rural Coal Region through Environmental Justice and The Knitting Mill Redevelopment: How Teamwork Led to Project Success (Yes, that project sounds familiar to BCONE members; BCONE’s PA Expansion Committee held a site visit there in 2019).
- BCONE Board member Brian Clark of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC spoke on the panels Regional Hot Topics in Brownfields: Resiliency, Fill Policy, and Sustainability and The Next Generation of Brownfield Properties from a Buyer’s Perspective. He was joined on the Hot Topics panel by BCONE Executive Director, Sue Boyle of GEI Consultants, Inc. Board member Emeritus Colleen Kokas of Environmental Liability Transfer, Inc. chaired the Next Generation panel as well as the session Playbook for Pennsylvania’s Retired Coal-Fired Power Plants.
- Emeritus Board Members Troy Conrad of PADEP was everywhere: He spoke on these panel: Brownfields 101, Federal and States Update, and the Technical Challenges and Solutions for PFAS at Brownfield Sites. If that isn’t enough, he chaired the Keynote Speaker session, The Arc of the Covenant session, and the Plenary Session.
- Advisory Council Committee Chair, Katrina Van Deusen of Whitman joined BCONE’s partners from NJIT on the panel entitled Green Remediation for the 21st Century; Gary White of the NJIT TAB chaired that session and spoke at the EPA Region 3 All Grantees meeting.
A new trend at Brownfield conferences, which we believe started with our colleagues from the Central Appalachian Brownfields Innovation Network (CABIN) in WV, is the inclusion of the Women’s Network session.
Long-time friends of BCONE, Jill Gaito of Gaito & Associate and Kim Hoover of PADEP led the informal women’s gathering, which included Ms. Gaito’s reflections on her brownfield career path (an amazing story of risk taking, smarts, and strength) followed by terrific interactive discussion moderated masterfully by Ms. Hoover. We wholeheartedly endorse this new trend and will include it at BCONE’s NSCW. It supports our observation that there were lots of new faces at the 2020 PA Brownfield Conference and the vast majority were smart, energetic women.