The town of Kingsville has hosted its first ever economic development conference over the past two days, and one thing is clear: Kingsville is ready for a business boom.

“This is part of progress to say we are ready,” says Kingsville Mayor Nelson Santos. “And we are ready to take the next step.”

That next step started this week, and Mayor Santos says hosting this conference been 10 years in the making.

Kingsville used the opportunity to showcase its progress and forward thinking momentum to other municipalities across the country.

The conference featured keynote speakers from the business, politics and policy world, including author of “13 ways to kill a community,” Doug Griffiths.

Griffiths works with communities across North America to help them see how their actions and attitudes can lead to failure.

“Communities like this are looking for momentum to get a message out to continue to build and grow stronger,” Griffiths said, noting success can’t be achieved in isolation. That’s why he’s pushing a truly regional effort.

“Business owners and industry are not looking for one community, they are looking for regions. They aren't looking for the lowest taxes, they are looking for service,” Griffiths says.

Another message: Tourism and economic development go hand in hand.

“We know everyone is contributing more to make it a success and we’re seeing great progress and hope the momentum continues,” Mayor Santos says.