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This December, we want to see YOU in Philadelphia as we ring in the COGEL Conference’s 40th year!

The well-known COGEL Conference is the top destination for learning what’s new in the fields of campaign finance, governmental ethics, elections, lobbying, and freedom of information. Mark your calendars, so you don’t miss this incredible opportunity to connect with experts from across the U.S. and Canada in a city where you can contemplate independence, salute liberty, and celebrate freedom.

What You'll Learn and Experience +

There is so much to look forward to at this year’s 40th Annual COGEL Conference!

Join us for a fresh and dynamic program of 45+ educational breakout sessions focused on cutting-edge and emerging topics led by over 125 engaging experts. In addition, we promise a stellar and thought provoking line-up of plenary speakers. These breakout and plenary sessions are sure to keep the streets of Philadelphia buzzing with conversation! Conference favorites – including Breakfast Table Topics and the COGEL Dine-Arounds – are also part of the programming, providing attendees with valuable formal and informal networking opportunities.

The 2018 COGEL Conference offers something for everyone. Each day provides a variety of sessions and experiences for learning and connecting, so that you can return to your agencies and organizations inspired with new ideas.

Why This is a Must-Attend Event +
  • Gain invaluable insights as experts from 85+ jurisdictions debate and discuss the most critical issues in the fields of campaign finance, governmental ethics, elections, lobbying, and freedom of information.

  • Hone your professional skills via numerous interactive and engaging trainings.

  • Learn about the latest legal developments in your field from leading lawyers at the most prominent U.S. and Canadian law firms and law schools.

  • Expand your connections during multiple networking opportunities throughout the conference, including extended networking breaks, luncheons, and receptions.

  • Networking Dine-Arounds! Continue the conversation at a local restaurant while expanding your COGEL network! We’ll even select the restaurants, recruit the coordinators, and make the reservations for you. All you have to do is sign-up and show up!

What Attendees Have Said About Past Conferences +

“Professionally organized, stellar speakers, and great fun!”

“Great networking opportunities with the Breakfast Table Topics and COGEL Dine-Arounds.”

“Excellent sessions, good content, and thoughtful presentations!”

“This conference is one of the highlights of my year.”

What You’ll See & Do! +

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of COGEL’s founding, this year’s conference is held in the birthplace of American freedom, a city filled with both history and innovation.

Although it was made famous as the birthplace of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” Philadelphia was founded on the ideals of tolerance and freedom long before the colonists gathered at what is now called Independence Hall. Grounded in these early roots, the city has since evolved into a dynamic hub of business, culture, arts, education, and history. Walk down Philadelphia’s streets and witness its rich colonial history interwoven with the modernity of its towering skyscrapers. This vibrant, walkable downtown is home to unmatched historical attractions, an award-winning restaurant scene, world-renowned arts and cultural institutions, and legendary professional sports teams.

For history buffs, no visit to Philadelphia is complete without exploring the city’s rich colonial history. Dive into the past at Independence Hall, the site of the signing of the Declaration of Independence; tour the Betsy Ross House, the home of America’s most famous flag maker; and visit the African American Museum for a fresh and inspiring look at the role of African-Americans in the founding of the nation. You can also explore the National Constitution Center, which brings the U.S. Constitution to life through hundreds of interactive exhibits, and discover one of Philadelphia’s newest attractions, the Museum of the American Revolution, which tells an inclusive and immersive story about America’s founding. No matter where you go, Philadelphia provides an inspiring journey through history that no other city can offer.

Philadelphia also has a multitude of offerings for art lovers. The Philadelphia Museum of Art houses an immense collection that ranges from Renaissance masters to Asian ceramics to contemporary artists. The nearby Rodin Museum houses one of the largest collections of the French sculptor Auguste Rodin outside of Paris. At the Barnes Foundation, you’ll see more than 4,000 works of Post-Impressionist and early Modern art by Renoir, Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso, van Gogh, and more. Plus, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts boasts a renowned collection of American artwork that spans two centuries and includes works by the country’s greatest artists.

Finally, your visit to Philadelphia would not be complete without stopping by some of the city’s most iconic attractions.

Create your own Rocky moment by running up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Head to South Philly to treat your taste buds to a Philly cheesesteak “wit” or “witout”--and determine for yourself whether you side with Pat’s or Geno’s in the great cheesesteak debate! Then, stop at the newly redesigned LOVE Park to get the perfect Instagram pic of the City of Brotherly Love’s best-known artwork—the giant LOVE sculpture.

Wherever you go in this celebrated city, we are excited for you to join us as we ring in COGEL’s 40th annual conference in Philadelphia!

Where You’ll Be! +

Located in Center City just blocks from some of Philadelphia’s most famous buildings, the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown serves as the host hotel for the 2018 COGEL Conference. Adjacent to the hotel is the Reading Terminal Market, the oldest continuously operating farmers market in the country. Offering a maze of more than 80 merchants and ethnically diverse eateries, we know this will be a popular destination for COGEL attendees!

The Philadelphia Marriott Downtown is located at 1201 Market Street. The room rate is the prevailing government per diem rate (currently $202 U.S. — Note: rate may change prior to Conference) through November 19, 2018 or until room block is full. Reserve your room by calling 877-901-6632 (ask for the COGEL Conference rate) or online at

The hotel is surrounded by many new, dynamic destinations that are opening in 2018, including the Fashion District Philadelphia, which houses three blocks of retail, dining, and entertainment, and the elevated Viaduct Rail Park, an abandoned rail yard turned public space that offers walking trails among abundant greenery. The Philadelphia Marriott Downtown is conveniently located near public transportation. A trip from the Philadelphia International Airport on SEPTA will cost approximately $8, and a taxi ride is approximately $30.

Looking for something to do outside the conference? Take a simple look out your hotel window and you’ll be inspired to explore this vibrant city. Whether you’re looking for great eats, bustling shops, celebrated museums, lush gardens, or all of the above, they are all nearby.

COGEL Policies +

Cancellation Policy—Cancellations received prior to November 15, 2018, will be charged a $100.00 administrative fee. No refunds will be made for cancellations after November 15, 2018, or for "no shows”.

Billing—Payment must accompany the registration form. Registration forms will not be accepted without payment. We regret we are unable to accept Purchase Orders.

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