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Pre-conference workshop to examine North Little Rock, SW Arkansas communities for lessons on putting community development plans into action

By Ryan McGeeney
U of A System Division of Agriculture
May 1, 2019 

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NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Community and economic development can involve a variety of frameworks designed to equip communities with the tools to take control of their futures. While each step helps community members map out a vision for growth and success, what counts most is action. Action transforms a community’s planning process into reality, gains buy-in from stakeholders, and makes impact happen. 


The 2019 Breakthrough Solutions pre-conference workshop, “Creating Connected Communities: A Hands-On Workshop for ARCO in Action,” will demonstrate ways for communities to take strategic action and equip communities with tools they need to be successful in emerging economy of the 21st century. 

The workshop will focus on the three-county Arkansas Coalition for the Ouachitas, ARCO, as the pilot community. This group includes Montgomery, Polk, and Scott counties, all located in southwest Arkansas. 

Prior to the conference, Breakthrough Solutions partners will tour the region and interact with community leaders to identify assets and opportunities. At the pre-conference workshop, Breakthrough Solutions partners will present their findings and lead small group discussions with workshop participants, using new tools to identify strategies and opportunities in more depth. The partners will then present these findings and launch an action process for the region.

“We are excited about this opportunity and look forward to being a part of the Breakthrough Solutions Pre-conference Workshop and launching ARCO in Action in our region,” said ARCO Chairman Gar Eisele. 

The pre-conference workshop will take place at place at the North Little Rock Chamber of Commerce headquarters, 100 Main Street, in North Little Rock. In addition to the working session, guests will hear from a panel of  North Little Rock experts discuss the revitalization of North Little Rock’s most popular neighborhood, Argenta, before seeing it for themselves on a walking tour. After the pre-conference workshop, guests are invited to attend dinner and a show at The Joint Comedy Club, 301 Main Street, in North Little Rock. 

The Breakthrough Solutions Conference follows on Wednesday, June 26, with the theme “Creating Connected Communities in the Emerging 21st Century Economy.” The conference will take place at the Four Points by Sheraton Little Rock Midtown, 925 South University Avenue, Little Rock.  

For more information, visit, e-mail or call 501-671-2253. 

To learn about community and economic development in Arkansas, contact your local Cooperative Extension Service agent or visit


About the Division of Agriculture

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.  

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.   

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs to all eligible persons without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. 

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Media Contact: Ryan McGeeney
Communication Services
U of A System Division of Agriculture
Cooperative Extension Service
(501) 671-2120