Thursday's luncheon dine around had a diverse and cozy group that luckily included some locals. Both our planned restaurant and our backup were out of business, the resident Portlandians led us to good eats. While we all came from diverse backgrounds, we had a lively discussion about challenges (and rewards) of being public historians working in the government sector. The lunch format worked so well for a business style discussion, and having it in the midst of the day dedicated to events and panels about graduate students and young professionals certainly helped set the tone.
Also, as young professionals it was helpful to begin to do some networking outside of academia but with public history trained/minded fellow professionals. I found that those discussions shaped the way that I approached sessions later in the conference where the subject or the participants were government product related.
Personally, I hope that we see more luncheon dine arounds at future conferences and that this forum for government sector public historians continues to find a place in the schedule of events.