An internationally recognized author and speaker on economic development in the post–baby boomer era was the keynote North Bay Business Journal’s May 12 Construction Industry Conference, “Building the Future Now.”

Mark Lautman is the founding director of the Community Economics Lab, an Albuquerque, N.M.-based not-for-profit think tank on economic development. He is the author of the book “When the Boomers Bail; A Community Economics Survival Guide.”

The conference addressed topics of interest to construction companies large and small. On the “Breaking the Housing Logjam” panel were:

• Rachel Ginis, founder and CEO of Lilypad Homes, a nonprofit renovating existing housing stock to create new units.

• Tamara Stanley, CEO of Habitat for Humanity for Sonoma County.

• Bob Glover, executive officer at the Building Industry Association of the Bay Area.

Other speakers at the conference:

• Doug Hamilton, president and owner of Oak Grove Construction on “Building the Labor Supply.”

• Suzanne Smith, executive director of the Sonoma County Transportation Authority, discussing “Building Our Infrastructure.”

• Jon Stout, general manager, Charles M. Schulz–Sonoma County Airport.

The keynote speaker was underwritten by Simons & Woodard, the Business Journal and the Building Industry Association of the Bay Area. Conference underwriters were George Petersen Insurance Agency and Ghilotti Construction Company. The major conference sponsor is InterWest Insurance Services. Corporate sponsors are North Coast Builders Exchange and Marin Builders Exchange.