MICHauto Investors Embark on Leadership Detroit Journey

Last week, the Detroit Regional Chamber’s signature Leadership Detroit program kicked off Class XLI. MICHauto’s Katelyn Davis joined 69 executives from across the Detroit region for a 10-month transformational leadership journey designed to challenge emerging and existing leaders from the Detroit region to bring about positive change.

Congratulations to the following investors for embarking on their journey:

Jay Brown, Director, Corporate Social Responsibility, RPM-The Driving Force in Logistics

Jade Burns, Assistant Professor, University of Michigan

Stephen Campbell, Attorney, Clark Hill PLC

Daniel Click, Managing Director, KPMG LLP

Ana Romero Davila, Senior Program Manager, Adient US LLC

Julianne Frost, Assistant Vice President, FCA Foundation; Engagement Manager, FCA Foundation and External Affairs; FCA US LLC

Richard Glover, Manager, U.S. Inside Sales Organization, IHS Markit

Farah Harb, Global Education Programs Analyst, Ford Motor Company Fund

Tom Komjathy, Director, SE Operations, Warner Norcross + Judd LLP

Dawn Medley, Associate Vice President, Enrollment Management, Wayne State University

Robert Nederhood, Partner, Foley & Lardner LLP

Lucas Polcyn, Principal, Miller Canfield

Christine Roeder, Senior Vice President, Growth and Development, Michigan Economic Development Corp.

Daniel Schairbaum, Attorney, Dykema Gossett PLLC

View the full class roster and learn more.

Maria F. Dwyer

Member in Charge, Clark Hill

Maria F. Dwyer is the member in charge of Clark Hill’s Detroit office and is a member in the firm’s Labor and Employment Group concentrating in employment defense litigation and counseling. Dwyer is a trusted advisor to senior management across a wide range of industries including public and private employers.

Dwyer has been named a “Michigan Super Lawyer” and identified by Hour Detroit magazine as one of the top women attorneys in Michigan every year since 2013. She is a graduate of the Michigan State University College of Law.

Making the Case for the Passage of the USMCA in Washington

Jason Puscas in Washington

MICHauto’s Jason Puscas visits Washington to advocate for the passage of the USMCA.

Earlier this month, Jason Puscas, director of government and community affairs for MICHauto and the Detroit Regional Chamber, visited Washington for the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) USMCA Legislative Fly-In. Joined by member companies, the group advocated for the passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), an ongoing effort by MICHauto and the Chamber to remove the uncertainty and unpredictability of trade and to continue to enable export growth for the American businesses.

Deputy United States Trade Representative C.J. Mahoney joined the coalition to provide an update on the ongoing negotiations between U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and the House Democratic working group.

Following the briefings, the coalition met with the offices of Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-MI 14), and Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI 12), Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY 3), Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH 9), Rep. Greg Pence (R-IN 6), and Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD 5) – to discuss the implications to automotive companies and Michigan’s economy if an agreement with Canada and Mexico is not passed, and the importance of continuing good-faith negotiations.

Is your college student considering law school?

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—September 17, 2019

Lansing, Mich. –Have you ever heard your college-aged son or daughter utter the words “I’m thinking about going to law school”? If the answer is yes, Foster Swift Collins & Smith has crafted a complimentary, half-day program geared for aspiring attorneys. The event will be held Saturday, October 19.

Undergraduate students considering a career in the legal field can learn about the realities of the profession from those who have experienced it firsthand. Attendees will learn about the process of becoming a lawyer in Michigan from current Foster Swift attorneys. The attorneys’ experiences provide valuable information to allow students to gain a better understanding of the path to becoming an attorney, as well as what it takes to succeed in private practice.

To learn more about this seminar, watch the following video at http://bit.ly/2lO7Gdk

Topics covered during the session will include:
• Information to know before applying to law school
• The law school admission process
• Law school summer programs
• First steps after law school
• Private practice and common myths
• Future of the legal field

One of the goals of this program is to showcase private practice opportunities in mid-Michigan to future lawyers. Foster Swift will host the seminar from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm at its Lansing office (313 S. Washington Square, Lansing, MI 48933). For more information and to register, visit https://bit.ly/2zbIEbv

Meet Leadership Detroit Class XLI

The Chamber recently reached out to several members of Leadership Detroit Class XLI to ask them questions about their leadership style, their mentors, and more. Get to know them by reading their responses below.

Vicky Rad

Director, Department of Planning and Economic Development, Macomb County

Q: Share a particular issue or challenge in the community that you are really passionate about.  What specific changes relative to this issue are you pushing to see?

A: I am truly passionate about providing opportunities for our future talent pipeline.  I see the current and future workforce needs and am pushing to engage more activities that connect students to employees and future technologies.



Jason Headen

Director, State and Local Government Affairs, Quicken Loans

Q: How do relationships shape your work? What are your thoughts on how tapping into relationships among a broad and diverse group of leaders will impact your work?

A: Solving problems comes down to building relationships and trust to reach a common goal. If it’s a big goal the success usually comes down to the team you have built to solve that problem. That means you have to be willing to meet new people, listen to new ideas, and sometimes adapt your approach in order to reach a goal. With that being said, having different and diverse perspectives helps you, your team, and organization grow and create equitable outcomes.

Kelly Cleaver

Michigan Director, Philanthropy, FoodCorps Michigan

Q: Do you currently have someone in your professional life that you would consider a mentor? If so, how does that person support you as a leader? Has your current mentor or mentors you have had in the past, shaped your leadership style, and if so, in what ways?

A: I am fortunate to have had several mentors over the years who have provided valuable advice as I’ve navigated my career path. Some of the lessons I’ve learned from professional mentors include: How to be bold without losing empathy, how to dream big, and it’s all about relationships.

Special D Events Receives Industry Accreditation

Special D Events – a strategic meeting and events management agency – is pleased to announce its accreditation by the Association of Destination Management Executives International (ADMEI) , making the company one of only two accredited organizations in the state of Michigan.

As a national agency with nearly 30 years of experience, Special D Events has produced events in all 50 states and beyond. The ADMEI certification, however, acknowledges the company’s local experience in a specific destination (e.g., Detroit). Working from its offices in Detroit and Ferndale, Special D Events connects clients with the latest and most relevant event venues and resources.

The ADMC (Accredited Destination Management Company) distinction is awarded to companies that meet ADMEI’s stringent standards for financial stability, event management experience and client satisfaction.

For further information on Special D Events in the D, please visit specialdevents.com, email Matt Rossi at mattr@specialdevents.com or call (248) 336-8600.

Andrew MacLeod Named President of the Association for Corporate Growth – Detroit Chapter

DETROIT, Mich., September 16, 2019 – Dickinson Wright PLLC is pleased to announce that Andrew MacLeod has been named President of the Association for Corporate Growth – Detroit Chapter.

Andrew MacLeod is a Member in the firm’s Detroit office. He focuses his practice on private equity, mergers & acquisitions, corporate law and taxation. He is counsel to private equity firms in the acquisition, divestiture and financing of portfolio companies and also serves as outside general counsel to portfolio companies in relation to their ongoing legal affairs and “add-on” acquisitions. He also serves as counsel to various publicly and privately owned companies in numerous merger and acquisition transactions, including LBO’s, MBO’s, recapitalization and divestiture transactions.

Mr. MacLeod is a member of the State Bar of Michigan and the Metropolitan Detroit Bar Association. Before being named President, he served as Co-Chair of the Programming Committee for ACG Detroit. Mr. MacLeod is recognized as a leader in his field by Chambers USA, Best Lawyers in America, and The Legal 500. He received his B.A. from the University of Michigan, his J.D. from Wayne State University, and his LL.M. in Taxation from Wayne State University.

ACG Detroit is one of the fastest growing ACG chapters around the globe. ACG Detroit is comprised of over 430 middle-market professionals from the Metro Detroit area and facilitates key networking and professional development events for members and the business community at large. To learn more, please visit www.acgdetroit.org.

About Dickinson Wright PLLC
Dickinson Wright PLLC is a general practice business law firm with more than 475 attorneys among more than 40 practice areas and 16 industry groups. Headquartered in Detroit and founded in 1878, the firm has 19 offices, including six in Michigan (Detroit, Troy, Ann Arbor, Lansing, Grand Rapids, and Saginaw) and 12 other domestic offices in Austin and El Paso, Texas; Columbus, Ohio; Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; Lexington, Ky.; Nashville and Music Row, Tenn.; Las Vegas and Reno, Nev.; Phoenix, Ariz.; Silicon Valley, Calif.; and Washington, D.C. The firm’s Canadian office is located in Toronto.

Dickinson Wright offers our clients a distinctive combination of superb client service, exceptional quality, value for fees, industry expertise and business acumen. As one of the few law firms with ISO/IEC 27001:2013 certification, Dickinson Wright has built state-of-the-art, independently-verified risk management controls and security processes for our commercial transactions. Dickinson Wright lawyers are known for delivering commercially-oriented advice on sophisticated transactions and have a remarkable record of wins in high-stakes litigation. Dickinson Wright lawyers are regularly cited for their expertise and experience by Chambers, Best Lawyers, Super Lawyers, and other leading independent law firm evaluating organizations.

Israeli Mobility Startups visit Detroit

DETROIT, Mich.In collaboration with PlanetM/The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), MICHauto, the Detroit Regional Partnership (DRP) and The Michigan Israel Business Accelerator, DRIVE TLV on Sept. 12 brought a smart mobility focused trade mission to the United States featuring startups within the transportation sector.

“We’re very pleased to work closely with Michigan as it continues to demonstrate unparalleled commitment and leadership in the global automotive sector by building strong relationships with DRIVE TLV and the Israeli mobility ecosystem, to bring the most innovative technologies to the State and its corporate partners,” said Itay Erel, CEO of DRIVE TLV.

DRIVE TLV (www.drivetlv.com) is a leading innovation center for smart mobility technologies in Israel. DRIVE provides startups with meaningful market opportunities while partners are provided with early insights into the start-ups’ cutting-edge technology ahead of their competitors.

“We are very pleased to host DRIVE and their technology companies here in Michigan. Our mobility sector here in Michigan is ripe with opportunities for collaboration and we look forward to mutually beneficial partnerships from this delegation trip and beyond,” said Scott Hiipakka, CEO of the Michigan Israel Business Accelerator.

The mission hosted companies including Enroute, AD Knight, InfiniDome, Moodify, Ottopia, SoftRide, and Voyage 81. The companies toured Michigan’s testing facilities such as MCity and the American City for Mobility (ACM), and participated in corporate matchmaking meetings with top mobility stakeholders established in Michigan.

“Our partnership with Israel continues to grow as we host delegations and develop grant programs for Israeli companies to test and pilot their technology in Michigan. Programs like this display our commitment to providing global mobility solutions and creating pathways to connect new markets,” said Seun Phillips, managing director of PlanetM, Michigan Economic Development Corporation

In 2013, Michigan became one of the first states in the United States to pass legislation for driverless vehicles. Since, Michigan’s infrastructure has grown as a leader in mobility through talent, research, testing opportunities and collaboration with private sectors.

“The DRIVE Israel team and its startup community are clear leaders in the global mobility ecosystem. Each year the DRIVE cohort of startups are delivering new innovations into the global automotive industry. Our team and the broader Michigan economic development community are committed to ensuring that Detroit’s automotive sector has access to this Israeli innovation,” said Justin Robinson, SVP Business Development, Detroit Regional Partnership

“As we continue to promote, retain, and grow the automotive industry here in Michigan, connecting the industry to new innovation continues to be critical. This mission is vital to bringing startup mobility technology to the forefront of our industry,” said Glenn Stevens, executive director of MICHauto, and vice president of automotive and mobility initiatives for the Detroit Regional Chamber.

Organizations such as PlanetM/The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), MICHauto, the Detroit Regional Partnership (DRP) and The Michigan Israel Business Accelerator work together to establish Michigan as the premier partner for economic development between Michigan and Israel. Companies interested in learning more about mobility focused trade mission opportunities to and from Israel should reach out to The Michigan Israel Business Accelerator by visiting www.michiganisrael.com.

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org. For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at www.michigan.org. Join the conversation on: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter


Hafiz Malik

Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Michigan

Hafiz Malik is an associate professor in the electrical and computer engineering department at University of Michigan-Dearborn. Some of his areas of research include multimedia forensics, Deepfakes, automotive cybersecurity, information hiding, pattern recognition, and information fusion.

Malik has had more than 80 papers published in leading journals, conferences, and workshops. He is a founding member of the Cybersecurity Center for Research, Education, and Outreach at UM-Dearborn. He is also a member of the Scientific and Industrial Advisory Board of the National Center for Cyber Security in Pakistan.