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Dear Partners,

On behalf of The Collaborative Firm, I would like to personally thank you for your participation in our 2023 South Metro Development Outlook Conference (SMDO) on Wednesday, March 8, 2023, at the Georgia International Convention Center in College Park.

SMDO 2023 sessions focused on the theme of "Transforming for the Future" and included Economic Forecast & Regional Growth; Exploring Georgia's Political Landscape Today; Impact of Innovative and Emerging Technology; MARTA On The Move in South Metro; and more!
This year, we attracted over 700 attendees, heard from over 30 speakers, and featured a wealth of information positively highlighting the South Metro region. 

Your participation in SMDO helped continue the excitement and interest in the South Metro area, allowing us to showcase current development successes and trends in an engaging conference. 

Please take the 2023 SMDO Survey! Your feedback is greatly appreciated and helps us in planning for future conferences.

Again, thank you for making this year’s conference a tremendous success!  We look forward to seeing you next year.




Michael Hightower
Managing Partner
The Collaborative Firm



After celebrating 21 Years of our Conference South Metro Development Conference (SMDO) in March 2023, we are excited about SMDO24 and the unique opportunities facing the South Metro Region in Metropolitan Atlanta.  We remain steadfast in our new economy and have made significant gains in new economic development activities, changes in work force development and significant infrastructure investments.   In addition, we are very proud of our outstanding business and governmental leadership in South Metro who continue to lead this progressive region.

The concept of SMDO was born out of the need to identify new developments and investments, higher levels of community development and housing throughout the South Metro Region.  The ardent ability to create and nurture relationships that yield opportunities with tangible outcomes are the fundamental aspects of the conference and its purpose. With interest, support, and attendance on the rise since its inception, SMDO has been able to provide a relative and memorable experience every year. Transforming the South Metro Region for over two decades, innovation remains the guiding factor for all new ventures and the results are elevation for everyone!

As The Collaborative Firm continues to build on 21 years of organizing and hosting the South Metro Development Outlook Conference, we are reminded that this event and its participants will impact the trajectory of the South Metro Region and influence generations of leaders in business, industry, and civic responsibility for decades to come.  The eagerness and determination observed during these challenging times is a testament to our endeavors in continuing the work ahead. The primary objective for SMDO will stay on course to strengthen and bring development opportunities to the South Metro Region. Our outstanding panel of speakers represents every level of government and private industry. SMDO24 will continue to move forward in a strategic direction, embrace our new economy and unique opportunities in the new year and beyond, as we highlight some of our region’s vibrant downtowns, new transit opportunities including infrastructure enhancements, changes in work force development while including inclusive diversity and inclusion initiatives.  Of course, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, in addition to our logistics and supply chain activities, will continue to be a part of SMDO24.

SMDO24 promises to deliver a one-of-a-kind experience. Our reach continues to expand by including access to virtual platforms that are ideal for networking and coordinating interest among professional peers. On behalf of The Collaborative Firm, thank you for your participation, sponsorship and support of the Annual South Metro Development Outlook Conference. We are looking forward to your presence. Stay tuned for session and speaker updates in conjunction with more conference details.



Michael Hightower,

Managing Partner

The Collaborative Firm

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