2019 Conference Keynote Speakers

NOV 6th-8th 2019

Neelay Bhatt

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/neelay

Twitter: @neelaybhattt

Neelay’s career on five continents includes Disney, The Super Bowl, The Olympics, besides several years of consulting, public speaking and training. TEDx, the global platform for ideas, describes him as a business and communications visionary, and his service on the National Recreation and Park Association’s Board of Directors is committed to ensuring that ‘no child is left indoors’. Most recently, he was chosen by the Indianapolis Business Journal as Indy’s 40 under 40.  

As the Principal at PROS Consulting INC. (headquartered in Indianapolis), he has led 130+ strategic and master planning, sports facility development, customer service training, and marketing and branding projects. These projects have recommended facility development and infrastructure improvements totaling over $2 billion USD and are helping to shape a better vision for parks, recreation, and sports all over the world.

He is an alumnus of the Harvard Kennedy School and #1 ranked Sports Management Program in the world at Ohio University and his messages on empathetic leadership, magical customer service and the art of storytelling have benefited executives, professionals, and students from North America to China and from Europe to New Zealand.

Besides leading a TED Global workshop in Canada, presenting multiple TEDx talks and coaching TEDx presenters, he has delivered keynotes and presentations in conferences ranging from China to India, Europe to New Zealand and across North America for parks and recreation, sports and events conferences.  His approach focuses on innovation, and storytelling to serve an increasingly global audience, ensure financial sustainability, and to create a guest experience of the highest quality. 

Chris Nunes

Chris Nunes, CPRE, is the Director of Parks and Recreation for The Woodlands Township, in The Woodlands, Texas.  In that position, he oversees a $22 million operational budget and is accountable for the management of 140 parks, 15 swimming pools and aquatic facilities, 220 miles of pathways, and 200 miles of streetscape While in The Woodlands, he has implemented cost recovery strategies, developed business/operational plans for major and minor facilities, and has increased programming 200% with no additional staff. 

Chris speaks around the country (over 300+  sessions) on topics including: business plans, contracting, creative programming, marketing, external funding, communication, leadership and succession planning. In addition, he serves or has served on the Oglebay Revenue Management School,  NRPA Council on Accreditation, CPRP/E Committee, CPRP Exam Committee, was the 2010 Chair of the Board of Regents of the Rocky Mountain Revenue Management School, founded the Gulf Coast Leadership Development Institute, 2013-2014 Chair of the NRPA Admin Network and is a Certified Parks and Recreation Executive.   

In 2012, Chris was elected as a fellow of the American Academy of Parks and Recreation Administrators and in 2015 he received the National Distinguished Professional Award from NRPA.  Additionally, in 2016-2017 he served as the President of the American Academy of Parks and Recreation Administrators. 

Prior to The Woodlands, he was the Director of Community Services for the City of Fort Morgan, Colorado, an Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator for the Recreation Management Program at Ashland University and Director of Parks and Recreation in Fort Kent, Maine. Chris holds a Bachelors Degree in Recreation Management and a Masters Degree in Sports Management from Springfield College in Massachusetts and a Doctorate in Parks and Recreation Administration from the University of New Mexico.

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