The 2021 Virtual Ideas Summit

NRI normally hosts a biennial Ideas Summit in Washington, D.C.—a two-day conference convening conservative leaders and NRI supporters to discuss the pressing issues of the day and critically assess our movement. Due to COVID-19 restrictions in D.C., we decided to split the Ideas Summit into two parts.

We hosted Part I on February 18 as a virtual conference focused on the fight against socialism.

On May 20 and 21, we streamed Part II, a formal program with panel discussions—similar to our traditional Ideas Summit—live from an exclusive donor retreat at The Greenbrier to our larger audience across the country. The virtual program covered issues ranging from education policy, to energy, to cancel culture.

PART I: Standing Athwart the Perennial Threat of Socialism 
February 18, 2021 | Virtual

NRI hosted Part I on February 18 as a virtual conference titled “Standing Athwart the Perennial Threat of Socialism.” The program featured Rich Lowry and John O’Sullivan discussing today’s culture wars; a panel with members of the Congress’s new “Freedom Force,” moderated by Jay Nordlinger; and a conversation with Senator Tom Cotton and Ramesh Ponnuru. Our speakers reflected on the historical significance of the fight against socialism and made the case for promoting limited government and the ideals of our Republic.

Missed the live event? With a tax-deductible donation of $25 to NRI, you will be sent a link to the full show! Click here.

Thank you to our sponsors!

Wendy and Dale Brott, Ohio
Audrey and Peter Denton, Florida
Virginia James, New Jersey
Peter J. Travers, New Jersey

Mr. and Mrs. James C. Cusser, Kansas
Mr. and Mrs. William Hoskins, Massachusetts
Catherine Barr Windels, New York
Julianne and Michael Woronoff, California

Kenin Spivak, California

Erika and John Ammirati, California
Bob Arnett, Texas
Janet and Allen Baker, Mississippi
David J. Bertoch, Esq, Texas
Donald Best, California
John Dalsheim, New York
Jack Fowler, Connecticut
Norman Hapke, California
Nancy Reardon, Massachusetts
Liza and Cameron Smith, Connecticut

PART II: Finding Opportunity Through Freedom

May 20 and 21, 2021 | The Greenbrier, West Virginia / Virtual

The Retreat

Our 1955 Society Patron and Benefactor members joined us from all across the country for our inaugural retreat at The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia. The group served as our in-person audience for the formal Ideas Summit Part II and also participated in private strategy discussions with our leadership. These interactive sessions gave attendees an opportunity to dive deeper and offer their perspectives on topics covered during the formal program. Guests enjoyed cocktail receptions and dinner programs as well as optional activities, including falconry, golf, and a tour of The Greenbrier’s Cold War-era bunker. In addition to the NRI supporters and NR and NRI talent who joined us, we were honored to host some of West Virginia’s top officials: Governor Jim Justice, Congresswoman Carol Miller, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, and West Virginia Treasurer Riley Moore.

The Virtual Conference

Remote guests tuned into a livestream of the formal program at The Greenbrier—panel discussions with notable conservatives and top NR writers discussing the important issues of the day. Topics included education policy with Former US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, the crisis at the border with Governor Doug Ducey (AZ), the future of the judiciary with Andrew C. McCarthy and former US Deputy Attorney General George Terwilliger, and defending free markets with Kevin Hassett, who served in the Trump administration as a senior adviser to the president and is a former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers. NRI supporters Karen Buchwald Wright and Tim Rastin spoke with Charles C. W. Cooke about America’s energy independence and their new project The Empowerment Alliance. This initiative engages the American people in an open and honest dialogue about the best way to re-establish the United States as a global energy superpower. You can learn more about it here. We also had a special welcome to West Virginia from Governor Jim Justice, who considers The Greenbrier home.

Missed the live event? With a tax-deductible donation of $25 to NRI, you will be sent a link to the full show! Click here.

Thank you to our sponsors!

Karen and Richard Spencer, California
Audrey and Peter Denton, New Jersey

Janet and Brad Childers, Texas

Stephen Chazen, Texas
Douglas Schneider, Delaware

Maureen and James Buchwald, Ohio
Nancy Reardon, Massachusetts
David Smoker, Minnesota