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Accela Announces Keynote Presenters and Engaging Line-up for Highly-Interactive Virtual Accelarate 2020

Microsoft Executive Director of State and Local Government Solutions Kim Nelson, acclaimed documentary filmmaker Brett Culp, and Accela CEO Gary Kovacs headline annual conference focused on transformation, trust, and technology 

San Ramon, Calif. (September 24, 2020)— Accela, the leading provider of cloud-based solutions for government, today announced its marquee line-up of keynote speakers, breakout sessions, entertainment, and sponsors for its annual conference and training event, Accelarate. The event, which will be 100 percent virtual, will take place from October 5-9. Themed “Meeting Our Moment,” the discussions will center on reimagining government and how Accela customers are leveraging cloud technology to tackle the unprecedented challenges of the current pandemic and beyond. For the first time ever, Accela is opening the doors of the conference this year to extend beyond customers and partners. 

“Government leaders are facing challenges they have never seen before,” said Gary Kovacs, CEO at Accela. “In response, we’ve seen cities, counties and states across the country exhibit unprecedented agility, perseverance, and fortitude to meet the needs of their communities in this defining moment. This year’s Accelarate will provide a space for the technology and government leaders making an impact to come together to share best practices, celebrate success stories, and develop strategies for bolstering resilience as we look toward the future.”  

Accelarate 2020’s keynotes will showcase industry leaders, visionary executives, and influencers sharing insights into how technology, partnerships, and a reimagined approach to government can help leaders build better communities. The event will feature two complimentary days open to all govtech leaders (October 6 and 7) and three days (October 5, 8, 9) of online training for customers and partners. The full schedule comprises insightful keynotes, more than 50 informative breakout sessions on Accela’s market-leading Civic Applications and COVID-19 Response Solutions, entry to the Partner Pavilion, and access to the Accela Experience Center (AEC) – a one-stop shop for attendees to interact with Accela teams and departments critical to their success, which includes the opportunity to participate in a User Experience Lab and experience the newest features and capabilities of Accela’s solutions.  

In addition to inspirational keynotes, product training, and showcasing stories of government resilience, Accelarate will have interactive networking opportunities built in throughout the event for customers, partners, and Accela team members to share tips, strategies, and ideas. The event will also feature entertainment options for attendees, including musical performances by  Jerrod Niemann  and  Chris Weaver, a segment of magic featuring tricks and instruction by UK magician Troy Lockyear, a cocktail event with a mixologist demoing the creation of a signature cocktail recipe, and on-demand relaxation and stretching with professional mindfulness coaches throughout the event.  

Today’s announcement about this no-fee event (training fees apply) builds upon Accela’s commitment to deliver modern digital tools that help build thriving communities, now and in the future. Because reimagining government requires the valuable perspectives of our customers, our partners, agency representatives, and industry thought leaders, we aim to make it easier for anyone in the industry to attend this conference. 


What: Accelarate, Meeting Our Moment  

When: October 5-9, 2020 

Where: Register for the virtual event here 


The conference’s two open-to-all, general session days comprise a range of presentations by Accela executives, technology experts, and guest speakers.  

Conference General Session Day 1 (Tuesday, October 6): 

  • Accela CEO Gary Kovacs will present on the “Legacy of Change,” and how governments on the front lines of keeping communities safe and healthy during these unprecedented times are doing extraordinary things. He will also discuss how partnerships are fueling opportunities to make changes for the better and collectively meet our moment.  
  • Kim Nelson, Executive Director of State and Local Government Solutions at Microsoft, will present on “Technology Sustaining Services When Resources Are Tight.” Kim is the Executive Director of U.S. Public Sector’s State and Local Government Solutions at Microsoft.  
  • Troy Coggiola, Accela’s Chief Product Officer, will discuss agency resiliency and the Accela solutions that have empowered agency response, and Accela Product Management Vice Presidents, Amber D’Ottavio and Cathy Grossi, will showcase upcoming Accela features and product capabilities, including Accela Insights and Premium Citizen Experience, by using the scenario of a town digitally transforming. 

Conference General Session Day 2 (Wednesday, October 7): 

  • Acclaimed documentary filmmaker and motivational speaker, Brett Culp, will feature heroic individuals and inspiring stories that demonstrate the positivity of the human experience, everyday leadership, and the powerful difference governments can make.  
  • Accela’s Chief Technology Officer, Renato Mascardo, will present on “Foundational Excellence for Connected Government,” and will be followed by Chief Customer Officer, Jonathon Knight on how Accela is making it faster and easier for agencies to benefit from the cloud. 
  • The mainstage content will wrap with a segment hosted by Tom Nieto, Accela’s COO on “Innovation, Execution and Scale,” showcasing real-world examples by Hunter Menton, Head of Payments Revenue of Forte, the Accelarate 2020 Title Sponsor; Jack Belcher, CIO of Arlington County, and Enrico Gradi, Land Use Planner at Bernalillo County. 


Accela is pleased to announce Forte, a provider of innovative and flexible payment solutions, as the Accelarate 2020 title sponsor. Platinum sponsors include Microsoft and ePermitHub, accompanied by dozens of partner sponsors at the Gold, Silver, and Bronze levels. All sponsors will participate in Accelarate’s digital Partner Pavilion with their own virtual exhibit booth.  


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About Accela 

Accela provides market-leading cloud solutions that empower the most innovative state and local governments around the world to build thriving communities, grow businesses and protect citizens. More than 275 million citizens globally benefit from Accela’s solutions, which are powered by Microsoft Azure, for permitting, licensing, code enforcement and service request management. Accela’s fast-to-implement Civic Applications, built on its robust and extensible Civic Platform, help agencies address specific needs today, while ensuring they are prepared for any emerging or complex challenges in the future. The company was recently recognized as a 2020 Microsoft US Partner Award winner for its innovative SaaS solutions to help governments respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, and was named as one of the Largest East Bay Tech Employers by San Francisco Business Journal. Accela is headquartered in San Ramon, California, with additional offices around the world. For more information, visit 

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