Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS) Annual Meeting
Date: Oct. 17-19, 2023
Location: Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station, Denver, Colorado, USA
Theme: Building the Next Generation of Leaders in Agriculture
The 14th Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS) Annual Meeting (GAM), hosted by the NAAAN, is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 17, through Thursday, Oct. 19. This event will be held at the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station in Denver, Colorado, United States, and will focus on ‘Building the Next Generation of Leaders in Agriculture‘.
Join us for innovative speakers, interactive plenary sessions, break-out discussions, and field trips to local farms and businesses. Together we will address ways to attract and prepare the next generation of leaders to the food and agriculture workforce and improve global food security.
Join us for the 14th GFRAS Annual Meeting
Oct. 17-19 in Denver, Colorado, USA.
We look forward to seeing you at the GAM. Please register at the above link. In addition to special “early bird” pricing, we are offering the following tiered registration structure:
U.S. and Canada fee
Early Bird registration (April 3-June 16)
Regular registration (June 17-Sept. 16)
Please note that registration closes on Sept. 16 (11:59 p.m., MDT). This is also the deadline for reserving hotel rooms through our special rate. Please reference the “Getting to Denver” section for more details on the venue, visas, lodging, and accommodation.
Agenda and speakers
- Tuesday, October 17th – Plenary and breakout sessions, including a panel discussion with the NAAAN ex-officio Steering Committee Members (TBD)
- Wednesday, October 18th – Field trips to regional family farms and ranches, food operations, and agricultural businesses; self-guided CSU Spur Campus tours and a cultural evening with western food and music
- Thursday, October 19th – Plenary and breakout sessions, regional meetings for GFRAS Networks, and a closing keynote
Getting to Denver
The NAAAN Secretariat has reserved 150 hotel rooms at the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station located at 1999 Chestnut Pl, Denver, CO 80202. Conveniently located in downtown Denver, and just a 3-minute walk from Union Station, the venue allows for easy transportation in and out of the city.
If you are from one of the participating Visa Waiver Program (VWP) countries included in this list, you are not required to apply for a visa for tourism or business purposes for stays of 90 days or less to enter the United States. However, you must have a valid Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) approval prior to travel and meet the outlined requirements. Please find the ESTA application link here.
If you are not from a Visa Waiver Program (VWP) country, please consult the Visitor Visa page on the State Department website for information regarding the process to apply for a business, tourism, or combination visa to attend the GAM, if you do not already have a visitor visa. These visas typically last for 10 years.
You will be required to submit an online nonimmigrant visa application (form DS-160), a photo of yourself, and schedule an interview with a nearby consular officer at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate. For a full list of up-to-date requirements, cost, wait times per region, and to schedule your interview, please consult the State Department website. The wait times can vary widely by region, so we encourage you to begin the visa process as soon as possible.
Additionally, as listed on the State Department Website, please note that, “A letter of invitation or Affidavit of Support is not needed to apply for a visitor visa. If you choose to bring a letter of invitation or Affidavit of Support to your interview, please remember it is NOT one of the factors used in determining whether to issue or deny the visa.”
If you are still interested in such a letter of invitation, please complete the Event Inquiry Form. We will redirect email inquiries to this inquiry form. Note that the NAAAN, in consultation with GFRAS, will use its discretion in determining who it issues a letter of support to, and this letter does not serve as proof of sponsorship. For more information regarding letters of invitation, please consult the State Department website.
Funding support to attend the GAM is limited. Please complete the Event Inquiry Form to express your interest in funding support to attend this meeting. Please note that completing this form DOES NOT guarantee funding to attend the meeting.
If you are a non-U.S. citizen who is a nonimmigrant (not a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, lawful permanent resident, or traveling to the United States on an immigrant visa), you will need to show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before you travel by air to the United States from a foreign country. For more information, visit the CDC COVID-19 website.
As the third busiest airport in the world, and with more than 69 million passengers in 2022, Denver International Airport is Colorado’s primary transportation hub. For more information, click here.
We recommend taking the “A Line” train in and out of the Denver International Airport to Union Station, just a 3-minute walk from the hotel and meeting venue. It takes about 37 minutes to ride the train and costs just $10.50 (USD). Trains depart frequently. Please check the RTD website for more information.
Taxi and Rideshare:
Taxis and rideshares (such as Uber and Lyft) are available from the 5th floor of Denver International Airport. The trip in and out of the airport to downtown takes around 45 minutes, and depending on the time of day can cost approximately $50-$100 (USD).
Take advantage of the Free Mallride along 16th Street in Downtown Denver. Additional busses and public transportation information can be found here. Taxis and rideshares are recommended for traveling to other locations outside of the downtown Denver area.
The meeting will take place at the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station located at 1999 Chestnut Pl, Denver, CO 80202. Conveniently located in downtown Denver, and just a 3-minute walk from Union Station, the venue allows for easy transportation in and out of the city.
To access the special room rate for the GAM and to reserve your room at the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station, please use this link.
We have also reserved a hotel room block at Hotel Indigo located at 1801 Wewatta St. Denver, CO. To reserve a room at Hotel Indigo please use this link.
The reservation page will automatically select your stay as October 16th through October 21st. If you would like to shorten or extend your stay, please edit the dates before selecting your room.
We have negotiated a competitive rate at the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station, and at Hotel Indigo and we encourage everyone to make a reservation at one of these locations.
The plenary session and main meeting will take place at Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station located at 1999 Chestnut Pl, Denver, CO 80202. For field trips on the second day of the meeting, transportation will be provided from the hotel to the field trip locations.
Discover the best things to do in Denver during your trip on the Visit Denver website.
Thank you to our meeting sponsors who are working to ensure we have a fantastic annual meeting! If your organization is interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact the NAAAN Secretariat csus_naaan@Mail.colostate.edu for information and opportunities, including event sponsor benefits.
This meeting is for members of the Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS) network, professionals interested in building the next generation of leaders in agriculture, extension and rural advisory experts, and the public and private agriculture sector. We encourage participation from around the world and from a variety of backgrounds.
The North American Agricultural Advisory Network (NAAAN) Secretariat has reserved 150 hotel rooms at the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station located at 1999 Chestnut Pl, Denver, CO 80202. Conveniently located in downtown Denver, and just a 3-minute walk from Union Station, the venue allows for easy transportation in and out of the city.
To access the special room rate for the GAM and to reserve your room, please use this link.
The plenary session and main meeting will take place at Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station. For field trips on the second day of the meeting, transportation will be provided from the hotel to the field trip locations.
Take advantage of the Free Mallride along 16th Street in Downtown Denver. Additional busses and public transportation information can be found here. Taxis and rideshares are recommended for traveling to other locations outside of the downtown area.
International travelers including, U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, U.S. lawful permanent residents, immigrants, and non-U.S. citizens who are not U.S. immigrants, can learn about the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines on the CDC Travel Webpage.
The GFRAS Annual Meeting will follow the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment guidelines for events and gatherings. Meeting organizers will inform participants of any public health requirements.
Please note: Non-U.S. citizen, non-U.S. immigrants must show proof of being fully vaccinated with the primary series of an accepted COVID-19 vaccine before you board your flight to the United States. Only limited exceptions apply. Learn more on the CDC website.
This meeting will be available in person only.
Whether you arrive by plane, train, bus or automobile, it’s easier than ever to get around Denver. Denver International Airport (DEN) is widely recognized as one of the best and easiest-to-navigate airports in the county, with multiple options for ground transportation once you land. We recommend taking a ride-share from the DEN airport to downtown Denver. Learn about Denver transportation options on the Visit Denver website.
October weather in Colorado is typically clear and dry with occasional rain and snow. Average high temperatures tend to be in the low 70’s°F (21°C), and average low temperatures hover around 45°F (7°C). You’ll typically see the highest temps in the afternoon, with the nights always cooling off throughout your trip. Find the latest Denver weather forecast here.
Looking for what to do in Denver? When you wake up in Denver, adventure awaits. Explore the city’s greatest spots. Get local Denver tips on attractions, activities, scenic sightseeing, biking and tours, golf and other destinations. Whether you’re a local, here for the weekend or more than a week, discover the best things to do in Denver during your trip on the Visit Denver website.
Thank you for your interest in hosting a side-event meeting on Monday, Oct. 16. Please complete this event inquiry form to share more details about how you would like to engage.
Please complete the event inquiry form if you are interested in visa letters of invitation, funding support to attend the event, presenting at the “partnership gallery”, or if you are interested in hosting a side event.
For additional questions, please contact the North American Agricultural Advisory Network (NAAAN) Secretariat at csus_naaan@Mail.colostate.edu.
Please complete the Event Inquiry Form if you are interested in visa letters of invitation, funding support to attend the meeting, participating in the “partnership gallery”, presenting, or if you are interested in hosting a side event.