Jennifer Schubert-Akin: ‘Thank you’ to Freedom Conference participants |

Jennifer Schubert-Akin: ‘Thank you’ to Freedom Conference participants

A huge thank-you to all who attended, participated in and sponsored The Steamboat Institute’s 10th annual Freedom Conference and Film Festival. With speakers and attendees coming from all across America, we are proud that the direct economic impact on the community of Steamboat Springs was $325,000.

Our inclusive message of individual freedom, limited government and equal opportunity for all clearly resonates with a cross-section of America. Our Freedom Conference attendees included retired schoolteachers, plumbers, construction workers, military veterans, realtors, bankers, high school and college students, a manufacturer of boat parts, retired CEOs, insurance agents, almond growers, cotton growers and parents and grandparents who love their kids and grandkids and love America.

We were proud to bring a sitting member of a Presidential Cabinet to Steamboat Springs for the first time. And, we were proud to feature a roundtable of university leaders to discuss the challenges of maintaining free speech and ideological diversity on college campuses.

Other speakers discussed protecting our kids in safe schools, inspiring and empowering our next generation of leaders, and common-sense solutions to healthcare to provide more affordable choices for consumers while maintaining a safety net for those who need help.

Our Film Festival featured five films, offering a unique opportunity for people to learn about individual freedom, personal responsibility, and the inspiration of faith and family through the art of film. We were proud to offer this family-friendly, fun and affordable opportunity to our Steamboat Springs community. Because of the tremendous response, look for us to grow the Film Festival in 2019.

As in prior years, we were proud to feature local musicians, singers, students and the American Legion-VFW Honor Guard as part of our Freedom Conference program. We are so proud of our community in Steamboat Springs and love having the opportunity to showcase our amazing local talent to our audience which comes from all across America.

And, we are proud that portions of our Freedom Conference were streamed live on and were taped by C-Span for televising over the coming weeks and months, expanding our audience from hundreds to millions. The Steamboat Institute is proud to have earned national recognition as a leader in promoting individual liberty, limited government, free markets and equal opportunity.

We’ve come a long way from that first rally on the courthouse lawn back in 2009. But throughout all we do, we follow two guiding principles – staying true to our core mission of promoting America’s first principles and providing a welcoming environment to everyone, regardless of your views on politics, religion, gay marriage, guns or reproductive rights. We welcome robust — but reasoned and respectful — debate. The “hecklers’ veto” will never prevail.

To quote U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, “Real leadership is about persuasion, it’s about movement, it’s bringing people around to your point of view — not by shouting them down, but by showing them how it is in their best interest to see things the way you do.”

Have the courage to make a difference. Here’s to the next 10 years.

Jennifer Schubert-Akin

The Steamboat Institute chairman, CEO and co-founder

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