The steady rain doesn't seem to be dampening the spirits of the conference-goers at the Spring Conference of the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging here in Washington, D.C. The Marriott Wardman Park is brimming with spring flowers and about 1,000 attendees at the conference.
Sharah Mashburn, AAHSA manager of communications, says the attendance is only down about 15% from last year's conference. Not bad considering the economic climate.
There was standing room only at this morning's opening session. Leslie Crutchfied, an advisor to leading nonprofits and philanthropies, educated the crowd on the six forces of high-impact not-for-profits. After the two hour presentation, the exhibit hall opened with more than 100 vendors and lunch beckoning.
Conference-goers seem excited and upbeat. It always amazes me how contagious their energy can be. It really makes me glad to be covering an industry that is so committed to its mission. I always head back to the office with renewed energy and a much better understanding of the long-term care industry.