From the President: Woodstock Institute’s 40th anniversary research symposium and bash was a big success

Written by Dory Rand on October 25, 2013 - 11:41am
For those who participated in our 40th anniversary national research symposium and bash, you know there was much learning, sharing, and celebrating.

If you were unable to attend, here are just a few of the highlights:

Scheinfeld Award—Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan graciously accepted the  award and ditched her prepared remarks to speak from the heart, congratulate Woodstock, and tell a packed audience that, while much has been accomplished, she is not finished working to protect Illinois consumers.  Madigan emphasized her reliance on Woodstock’s research in public hearings, court cases, landmark settlements against financial institutions. and other efforts she has taken to rein in abusive lending. Scheinfeld family members Sandra, Dan and Rebekah were present to celebrate the presentation of the inaugural award named for the Institute’s founding family.

Keynote speeches—The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)’s Deputy Director Steve Antonakes lead things off with a discussion of how the CFPB is making financial markets safer for consumers. Julia Stasch, Vice President of U.S. Programs for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, spoke about the importance of “connected learning,” an innovative concept called digital badges, and how foundations can play a role in advancing financial security. Finally, UCLA’s Dr. Fernando Torres-Gil charmed the audience while warning of the demographic changes that threaten our financial security and proposing ways to address those changes.


Click to see pictures from the event

Sessions – Experts from across the country presented cutting-edge research on a broad range of topics exploring economic security, community prosperity, and equity across the lifespan. While Woodstock shared its research in only two of the six sessions, we are engaged in research and policy work in nearly all of the substantive topics discussed at the symposium and we look forward to future collaborations with our presenters, moderators, and industry respondents who made the sessions so interesting and informative.

The bash—Attendees were the first to view our new video documenting the Institute’s early days and illustrious first 40 years. In addition to the Chicago-style pizza, sausages, and other local food favorites, attendees enjoyed the world music sounds of Funkadesi. The band entered with a dramatic drum line  and provided a great atmosphere for individuals from Woodstock’s past and future to dance and celebrate together!

You can see even more highlights, including panelists’ presentations and photos, at the 40th anniversary event page.

Thanks again to our sponsors, keynote speakers, panelists, volunteers, and attendees for making the event a rousing success. Now that we’ve had a chance to celebrate and learn with each other, it’s time to get back to work. See you on the front lines!