The Rhode Island Hospitality Association (RIHA) brought together its Human Resource Council members, Rhode Island high schools and community-based organizations on August 8 to discuss workforce needs within the hospitality industry and the issues that employers are facing when trying to fill vacant positions. Schools and community-based organizations discussed programs and shared what each is doing to help develop individuals entering the workforce. The conversation highlighted ways that the community and the industry can partner together to ensure that training programs are reinforcing and developing the skill sets employers are looking for in prospective employees. Participants also had the opportunity to network and exchange contact information in an effort to further the development of these potential partnerships. In another local outreach event, RIHA’s 16th annual Economic Outlook Breakfast drew guests on September 5. Industry analysts addressed approximately 90 Rhode Island hospitality professionals, with findings suggesting that the state can expect moderate growth in the restaurant industry and modest growth in the lodging industry by the end of 2019 and into 2020. This year’s panelists included Hudson Riehle, Senior Vice President, Research and Knowledge Group, National Restaurant Association; Rachel Roginsky, Principal, Pinnacle Advisory Group; and Heather R. Singleton, Chief Operating Officer, Rhode Island Hospitality Education Foundation.