The 70th anniversary of the Cotton Improvement Conference (CIC) was celebrated at the 2018 annual meeting. The CIC was organized in 1948 at a meeting held in conjunction with the Southern Agricultural Workers in New Orleans, LA. The structure of the CIC was informal with the purpose of allowing state, federal, and other cotton workers to report on research, exchange ideas and facilitate research program planning. The first meeting was held in Baton Rouge, LA in 1949. Few records remain of the early years of the conference even though mimeograph proceedings were produced. In 1956, the CIC joined the Beltwide Cotton Production Conference and has continued to meet annually with this group. In 1956, the Beltwide Conferences consisted of the Cotton Disease Council, founded in 1936, Cotton Defoliation – Physiology, established in 1942, Cotton Insect Control (1947), and CIC. Through the years members of the CIC have played key roles in the Joint Cotton Breeding Policy Committee, National Cotton Variety Test Program, and the Cotton Winter Nursery. The reporting of research, exchanging of ideas, and cooperation among public and private cotton workers has persisted throughout the 70 years of the CIC and these activities have benefitted the cotton industry. The Cotton Genetics Research Award was established in 1961 by the commercial cotton breeders to recognize scientific achievement in basic research in cotton genetics, cytogenetics and breeding.