The Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED) will be hosting an economic development forum on Tuesday, April 2 from 8 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Phoenix Country Club, 2901 N. Seventh St. in Phoenix.

Celina Shands Gradijan, president and CEO of Full Capacity Marketing, Inc., and Ron Painter, CEO of National Association of Workforce Boards, will deliver keynote presentations.

Shands Gradijan is a former American Marketing Association Marketer of the Year and two-time Women who Mean Business finalist. She leads a national consulting firm that specializes in social branding, marketing and communications for organizations focused on workforce and economic development, education and youth missions.

Painter’s organizations are known for producing labor market research, working with public educators on improved student career information, supporting community leaders in the development of regional benchmarks, and establishing collaboratives whose membership includes community colleges, employers, labor, and economic development professionals.

Other featured speakers include Courtney Klein Johnson of Seed-Spot, Greg LaVann of the Greater Yuma Economic Development Council, Sheila Shedd of the Arizona Commerce Authority and Russ Yelton of the Northern Arizona Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology.

The cost of the symposium is $60 for AAED members, $70 for non-members before March 29; and $85 for late registrants.  To register visit  For more information, call AAED at (602) 240-AAED (2233), or visit   Vegetarian meals must be requested in advance.

AAED was originally founded in 1974 as the Arizona Association for Industrial Development (AAID).  The organization, which was dedicated to expanding the industrial and economic base of Arizona, changed to its current name in 1991 to better reflect its broader mission.

The strategic vision of AAED is to be the leading advocate of responsible economic development for all of Arizona by leading the facilitation of public/private cooperation and fostering teamwork to address the growth and quality of life issues that face Arizona.  For more information on AAED, visit or call (602) 240-2233.