THE 2004 INSTALLMENT OF THE BIG BUILDER conference, the second of its kind, proved to be even more successful than the first, with approximately 400 attendees from the nation's largest home builders and more than 60 exhibitors soaking up knowledge and insight from industry leaders and experts while taking advantage of the tremendous networking opportunities the event offered.

Returning to the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nev., the November conference offered sessions and tracks on topics ranging from moving from mid- to high-rise to mastering the supply chain. An array of smaller sessions offered the opportunity for participants to interact with speakers and one another, while larger general sessions served as dynamic forums for bigger-picture discussions such as what's in store for the economy from an industry perspective and what's front of mind among the most prominent big builder executives. Participants also found time to dialogue with vendors in the conference's MarketSpace, establishing new and mutually productive relationships or building on old ones.

A highlight of the conference was the APEX Awards, which recognize exemplary corporate practices in the industry. Finally, the conference's receptions as well as Big Builder's 2nd Annual Golf Classic (sponsored by Whirlpool Corp.) provided platforms for networking, idea sharing, and plenty of enjoyment.