Over the next several weeks, there will be a number of bloggers stopping by the Page Turner blog to comment on the Page Society's 2009 Annual Conference, but as conference chair, I thought I would kick things off with a few thoughts.

As I'm sure you know, the theme for this year's Page Society conference in Chicago on Sept. 13-15 is “Values Under Stress." Quite timely, no? I doubt any industry has escaped the challenges that came with this economic downturn. Not only have we as communicators had to deal with the economic repercussions to our businesses and functions, but we have also had to stay tuned to the social impact that these challenges have had on our employees, investors and consumers.

Beyond that, the explosion of communication vehicles continues… Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, MySpace, Orkut, blogs, wikis, Ning, Bing. Sometimes, it seems almost impossible to keep up, much less anticipate the impact that each of these will have on our business. Who could even predict what will still be relevant in 12 months?

Which is why I'm excited about this year's conference. Though still two months away, the dialogue precipitated by our conference theme among prospective speakers and panelists have been incredibly engaging. We have a top-notch speaker panel – including three Fortune 500 CEOs (two publicly-traded, one formerly publicly-traded, now turned private), one former Fortune 500 CEO, and one financial industry association CEO. These folks, plus one surgeon-turned-broadcaster, one neuroscientist and a roster of compelling panelists are lined-up ready to give personal insights into the pressing issues and trends that we are facing each day. They'll tell us about the stresses we face and their suggestions for antidotes to that stress. We'll hear their PERSONAL insights into how they are overcoming these challenges while still maintaining value for their organizations.

And perhaps best of all, we'll have plenty of time to share our own experiences though a number of networking events. Chicago is such a great city and there will be sufficient opportunity to take in the culture, the sights and tastes of The City With Broad Shoulders.

This conference is one not to be missed. If you haven't registered yet, head over to the registration page. I urge you to do so today. If you do this before August 1st, you can save $400 off the registration fee (educators can save $150 off of the registration fee) and be automatically entered to win two round-trip business class airline tickets to anywhere in the world that United Airlines flies, courtesy of United Airlines.