General Sessions

Opening General Session

Monday, August 31 | 8:30 AM

The 4 Minute Formula for Success

0.1 CEUs

If you want to energize your performance and become the best version of you, look no further than world-class speaker and entrepreneur Eddie Slowikowski. It's time to identify your gifts and talents and create your 4 Minute Formula. With his history as a world-class runner and self-made entrepreneur, Eddie knows a thing or town about peak performance and making teamwork a reality. It's time to match who you are with who you want to be. 3 minutes and 58 seconds - the amount of time it took Eddie Slowikowski to run the mile. Whether it's as a Gold Medal winner for the USATrack & Field Team, a 3-time NCAA All-American, or an internationally known speaker, Eddie knows what it takes to be elite. best of all, Eddie can channel that sense of accomplishment through interactive storytelling to audiences everywhere. He can make you laugh, cry, dance and learn...all in one presentation! It's a roller coaster journey like no other, and Eddie's been doing it for over 25 years.

Learning Objectives:


3 minutes and 58 seconds. That is the amount of time it took Eddie Slowikowski to run the mile. Whether it’s as a Gold Medal winner for the USA Track & Field Team, a 3-time NCAA All-American, or the world’s most dynamic professional speaker, Eddie knows a thing or two about peak performance. Through years of training as an athlete and running his own speaking business, he knows what it takes to be elite. Eddie has always had the can-do spirit of an entrepreneur, in all walks of life. Best of all, Eddie can channel that sense of accomplishment through interactive storytelling to audiences everywhere. He can make you laugh, cry, dance and learn… all in one presentation. It’s a rollercoaster journey like no other, and Eddie’s been doing it for over 25 years. Throughout all the accomplishments and medals, Eddie sought to enrich his life with service and empowerment for himself and others. Through month-long service projects in Central America and helping the homeless in the city of Chicago, Eddie widened his world-view beyond the life of sports. Now a father of three, he proves that a successful balance of life and business can be attained. Eddie speaks to tens of thousands of people year in and year out, utilizing a vast array of programs that are always customized to fit the needs of each audience. Whether it’s for corporations or associations, Eddie’s personally devised programs are ever changing, keeping his message on the cutting edge for audiences everywhere. His extraordinary rate of repeat business is a testament to his versatile talent. The one constant through it all remains his high-energy message and interactive style. With his own state of the art sound system, Eddie uses music, sound effects, dancing and audience interaction to bring his memorable presentations to life. One thing is for sure: with Eddie Slowikowski, you’ll learn how to energize your performance to get the best out of your ability.


Tuesday General Session

Tuesday, September 1  |  4:30 PM

Bringing Life to A Community in an Equitable Way

0.1 CEUs

The COVID-19 pandemic combined with societal events have exposed the need for physical and mental healing in our country.  As our spaces were restricted and programs were canceled, opportunities to serve the community came in many forms including feeding, testing sites, and social services. Now the opportunity exists for our industry to educate other entities to demonstrate what happens when the community convenes in places where all things are equitable.  What role will parks and recreation professionals play in re-creating a sense of community across our state and our country?  Our speaker will allow us to explore the explicit and implicit reasons for inequities that require vision and intentional actions to change.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn about the unconscious bias that lead us to decisions and form our opinions.
  • Hear stories of how parks and recreation agencies serve their communities during COVID-19.
  • Identify trends for the future that may determine how society continues to react to pressures of inequity.

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 served to ensure that ‘no child is left indoors’.

He serves as the Vice President of the Immigrant Welcome Center and aspires to make Indy the most welcoming city in America. Most recently, he was chosen by the Indianapolis Business Journal as Indy’s Forty under 40 business leaders impacting the community.

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

He champions “Ideas Worth Spreading” as the curator and organizer for TEDxIndianapolis, TEDxIndianapolisWomen and TEDxCollegePark (MD) besides leading a TED Global workshop in Canada, presented multiple TEDx talks and coaching TEDx presenters as well.

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 shape a better vision for health and wellness, conservation and social equity in communities globally.


Closing General Session

Thursday, September 3 | 10:30 AM


The Power of a Winning Mindset - Change your Mindset, Change Your Results

0.1 CEUs

What do all remarkable people and organizations have in common? They’ve discovered the power of a winning mindset. Mindset is defined as a mental attitude that predetermines a person’s response and interpretation of a situation. The foundation for constructing winning results is a winning mindset! 
The beliefs we have about our talent, potential, and opportunities have a tremendous influence on how we perform. As a result, we rarely achieve more or become more than we believe we can. Why? Mindset directs behavior, which dictates motivation, which determines outcomes. A winning mindset produces results. A mediocre mindset produces excuses, and you see yourself as a victim. Mindset determines how you will perform when it matters most.
The most important capability you have is the capacity to choose your mindset. A winning mindset is something that can be learned, changed, and leveraged. It creates a self-belief that unlocks your potential, passion, and purpose. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand why consistency matters more than ability.
  • Develop the courage to embrace the unknown and discover possibilities.
  • Explore how to see yourself as a victor, never a victim of your circumstances.

Sports Illustrated, calls our speaker "one of the most acocmplished physically challenged athletes in the world." His name is Roger Crawford, and he is a living example that challenges are inevitable, however, defeat is optional. As a frequent guest in the media, Roger has appeared on CNBC, Good Morning America, The Today Show, and in several publications such as USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and Fast Company. Our speaker is also a best-selling author, with books translated into seventeen different languages. Furthermore, he is a recipient of the prestigious CPAE Speaker Hall of Fame Award, as well as the ITA Achievement Award presented by the International Tennis Hall of Fame. You can be inspired by him every week by watching Motivational Mondays with Roger Crawford featured on the Tennis Channel. Please join me in welcoming a recognized champion on and off the tennis court, Roger Crawford!