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2021 Call for Speaker Proposals

Special Districts Association of Oregon (SDAO) is actively seeking speaker proposals for its 2021 annual conference. The conference will take place February 4-7, 2021 at Sunriver Resort in Sunriver, Oregon. All proposals will be reviewed by the SDAO Conference & Education Committee.


About SDAO and the SDAO Annual Conference


SDAO was formed in 1979 to give special districts a stronger and united voice at the Oregon Legislature. SDAO provides advocacy with state administrative agencies and other units of government, training, information resources, and other support programs. Membership has grown to over 900 local government members.


The anticipated number of attendees for the 2021 conference is 450-500. There will be representation from a wide variety of district types (there are over 30 total district types in Oregon) with board members, management staff, staff, and volunteers attending.


Categories for Proposals


Keynote Speaker: The conference keynote speaker will deliver a message to the conference attendees on Friday, February 5th at 8:45am. This will last one hour to one hour and fifteen minutes in length. There are no constraints on the type of message that we are seeking. Past examples include motivational, inspirational, and expert.


Pre-Conference Sessions: Pre-conference sessions will be held for a half day (three to three and half hours) or full day (six to seven hours) on Thursday, February 4th. Examples of past session topics include board training, risk management, and grant writing.


Breakout Sessions: Breakout sessions are 90 minutes in length and will be held on Friday, February 5th and Saturday, February 6th. Session topics should align with one of four categories: board member development, human resources/legal, risk management, or miscellaneous.


Proposals for pre-conference and breakout sessions are encouraged, but not required, to address one or more of the following SDAO Academy topics:


• Contract Management / Risk Transfer
• Elections

• Financial Management and Audits

• Intergovernmental Affairs/Agreements

• Public Meetings and Public Records

• Public Relations

• Strategic Planning


• Harassment & Discrimination
• Drug & Alcohol Reasonable Suspicion

• Hiring Practices / Performance Management /
Documentation /Discipline / Discharge

• Social Media
• HR Audit / Compliance Audit
• Wage & Hour Compliance

• Cyber Risks
• Ergonomics
• Hazard Communications
• Injury / Illness Prevention Program
•Risk Management and Supervision
•Risk Management Culture
• Wellness


Speaker Proposal Requirements


  1. Brief overview of your presentation, including at least three learning objectives.
  2. Brief speaker biography including professional background and speaking experience.
  3. Preferences for day and time to present. Requests cannot be guaranteed but are helpful when scheduling.
  4. Any other requirements such as speaking fee, travel/transportation needs, etc. For our breakout sessions, we generally do not offer payment of a speaking fee but do provide reimbursement for mileage and lodging expenses.


Submission Instructions & Deadlines


Please submit your proposal by July 1, 2020 for consideration. Our committee will begin reviewing proposals in July/August. Speakers will be selected and confirmed by October 1, 2020, at the latest.


Please email your speaker proposal to both:

Jennifer Quisenberry: and Lauren Leopard:


Speaker Selection


SDAO staff will review all proposals. Final decisions will be made by the SDAO Conference & Education Committee.


More Information


To view the 2020 SDAO Annual Conference brochure with session information and other items related to the conference, please visit our website.




If you have questions about submitting your speaker proposal, please contact:


Jennifer Quisenberry

Director of Membership Services