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Waterways Symposium coming to Paducah next week

November 30, 2022   Metropolis Planet

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PADUCAH – Paducah’s importance in the inland waterways system will be highlighted next week as the Waterways Council, Inc. will be hosting its 19th annual Waterways Symposium in Paducah for the first time on Dec. 7 and 8.


The symposium, which will feature panels addressing topics such as impacts of the midterm elections on the marine industry, economic outlook, updates from the Army Corps of Engineers, and the effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on trade and shipping, will take place at the Paducah-McCracken County Convention Center.


Hosting the Waterways Symposium in Paducah for the first time is just another way Paducah is being recognized as a hub of the inland waterways system, WCI Chairman of the Board and Crounse Corporation President and CEO Matt Ricketts said.

“Paducah really is a center of the industry that we’re in. The community has been very supportive of embracing the river industry,” Ricketts said.



WCI Senior Vice President Deb Calhoun added that the Waterways Symposium has focused in recent years on the global economic impact the marine towing industry has and has highlighted the inland waterways system’s role and impact both domestically and globally.

“There really is a worldwide impact here on the waterways,” Calhoun said.


Some of the featured speakers at the annual Waterways Symposium next week include Nathan Gonzales, the editor and publisher of Inside Elections; Dr. Arthur B. Laffer, economist and former economic policy advisor to President Ronald Reagan; and Joe Craft, chairman, president and CEO of Alliance Resource Partners.


Ricketts’ two-year term as WCI’s chairman of the board is coming to a close this year, and a new chair will be elected at the symposium.


After wrapping up its final panel in the morning on Dec. 8, the Waterways Symposium will be followed by the Seamen’s Church Institute’s 22nd annual River Bell Awards Luncheon, which also recognizes the achievements of those in the marine industry.