Rebuilding Together's 2023 Summit: Inspire, Educate, Connect

November 1, 2023
by Michael Edmison, Vice President, Network Advancement at Rebuilding Together National

Rebuilding Together recently hosted its 28th annual affiliate conference (Summit) in Indianapolis from October 19 to 21, 2023. This year's theme, "Inspire, Educate, Connect," brought together a diverse group of affiliate leaders, all committed to making an impact in their communities.

Summit 2023 kicked off with an exciting opening ceremony at Dallara IndyCar Factory, a fitting start to an event focused on innovation. The iconic venue set the tone for an unforgettable gathering.

This year, a record-breaking number of individuals attended Summit–259 to be exact. Notably, 202 attendees hailed from 76 affiliates, accounting for 66% of the Rebuilding Together network. Among the attendees, 28% were executive directors of affiliates, highlighting the dedicated leadership within the network. Additionally, a significant 48% were first-time attendees, signaling the growth of Rebuilding Together's mission.

A highlight of Summit was the announcement of a remarkable $9 million gift to Rebuilding Together from author and philanthropist, MacKenzie Scott. This generous donation is a testament to the organization's impactful work across the country. Summit also featured an inspiring keynote address by Cassandra Worthy, a thought leader and advocate for positive change. Her insights and experiences added depth and inspiration to the weekend.

Throughout Summit, attendees had the opportunity to participate in a wide range of educational sessions, all aligned with Rebuilding Together's 2030 Strategic Goals. These sessions provided practical knowledge and strategies for our work, empowering attendees to take their learnings back to their respective affiliates. 

Summit attendees celebrated 35 years of Rebuilding Together’s national office with a 35th Anniversary Gala Awards ceremony, where outstanding contributions and achievements within the network were celebrated. Roz Pendleton, a 75-year-old Boston neighbor and board member of Rebuilding Together Boston, was the recipient of the Patty R. Johnson Community Builder Award. Other awards included Excellence in Programming (Rebuilding Together New Orleans), Excellence in Community Engagement (Rebuilding Together Of Greater Charlotte), Excellence in Leadership (Rebuilding Together Saratoga County), Volunteer of the Year (Paul Rubacky, Rebuilding Together North Jersey) and AmeriCorps Member of the Year (Samantha Pryde, Rebuilding Together Miami-Dade).

After several days of enriching sessions and networking, attendees gathered for an 80s-themed costume party to conclude Summit. Affiliate leaders celebrated the sense of community that makes Rebuilding Together so special.

The 2023 Rebuilding Together Summit was an exceptional blend of inspiration, education and connection. As Rebuilding Together continues to make strides in revitalizing communities and homes, this annual event serves as a beacon of hope and collaboration.