Our Gala Dinner is one of the highlights of our year. We hope you can join us on 12 April for this special event and celebrate with your local government colleagues the best of professional management in the sector. If you missed the 2016 dinner you may like to check out this short video from that event, filmed by our AV sponsor.

The Gala Dinner page in our website provides more information and you can save the date to your calendar as well as purchase tickets. This year it's being held at the lovely Langham hotel in Auckland.

There are three other events being held at the Langham in conjunction with the Gala Dinner on 12 April:

> The Marketplace: This is the free exhibition space we provide to councils that enter our 2017 McGredy Winder SOLGM Local Government Excellence Awards to showcase their projects to other councils and central government representatives. It’s open at the Langham from midday till the start of the Gala Dinner - come along and check out the innovative projects that are happening in councils around the country (see more information on the Awards below).

> An Executive Leaders Masterclass: This is for those already in senior leadership positions who want to know how to take the next step in their careers. The exciting programme includes topics such as 'Positioning yourself for your next big role' and 'What recruiters look for'. As well there will be a joint keynote presentation, with the Chief Executive Forum attendees, by Colin MacDonald, DIA's Chief Executive. Delegates can register for this Masterclass here.

> Our annual Chief Executives Forum: This is our annual event specifically for CEs. The programme includes a keynote from DIA Chief Executive, Colin MacDonald and Auckland Council's CE, Stephen Town speaking on the topic of 'When Growth becomes a headache'. Full details of the programme can be found here.

A final reminder that registrations close this Friday, 10 February for this intense yet fun premier forum for current and emerging local government leaders. The New Zealand leg of the Challenge will take place in mid-March at a venue near Wellington and the winning team will be announced at our Gala Dinner in April. That team will go on to represent New Zealand at the Australasian Finals in Hobart in late May. You can find more information, including a link to the LGProfessionals Australia's registration page, in our website here.

We've had an excellent response to our call for entries into the 2017 Excellence Awards® with 33 entries received by the close date of 1 February, two more than received in 2016. Entries included a diverse mix of projects across the full range of local authority activities from a digital repository to flood remediation to joint procurement. You can find our full release on the Award entries in our website here and more information on the Awards, including the 2016 winners can be found here.

The annual live update of our How Local Government Works Induction Series starts with a webinar next Wednesday, 15 February at 10am. The Series consists of five modules with each module including a webinar. It's a fantastic online tool for introducing new employees to the legislative environment of local government while allowing them to work at their own pace. The Series is available on a per-Council subscription basis and more information can be found here.

The JLT Risk Management Forum is on in Wellington on 16 & 17 February. This is our annual professional development and networking opportunity for risk management practitioners working in the sector and you can register here.

The Managing Performance Masterclass: Having Challenging Conversations is being held in Wellington on 24 February. There are limited spaces left and you can register here.

The Building Consent Authority Accreditation Scheme Webinar is a free webinar scheduled to start at 10am on 2 March. MBIE's Pete Laureson, Manager – Building System Control and Stephanie Coutts, Building System Performance will talk about the new relationship with the accreditation body (IANZ), changes to the regulations and the development of regulatory guidance. You can find out more and register here.

The new Emerging Leaders Development Programme, a three day immersion course, starts in Palmerston North on 6 March. Find out more about this exciting introduction to leadership development here.

The Civic Assurance Strategic Finance Forum is on in Auckland on 27 & 28 March. This year's Forum has a strong future focus with the impact of technology, lessons from austerity, shared capability, the 2018 LTPs and developments in the regulatory and policy environment all on the agenda. You can learn more here.

The Professional Administrators Forum (previously our EA/PA Forum) is being held in Auckland on 11 & 12 May. The programme includes some really exciting topics and presenters including My Food Bag's Nadia Lim, Life Coach Louise Thompson and office productivity guru, Debbie Mayo-Smith. The full programme is available here.

All our other events currently open for registration can be found here.