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Leaders Make Business Case for Detroit’s Diverse Industries

The opportunity that exists for individuals to make a direct impact on their city sets Detroit apart from nearly all other major cities and is an immense recruiting tool for attracting college graduates. During the afternoon concurrent session, “Open for Business: The Diversification of Detroit’s Industry,” panelists raved about Detroit’s existing logistical infrastructure and geographic location, as well as the unique camaraderie amongst downtown Detroit institutional anchors.

While the region is known as the epicenter of the automotive sector, the panel agreed that Detroit maintains the ability to compete internationally in a variety of industries, ranging from the growing food economy to high-tech IT. Panelists included: Dan Carmody, president of Eastern Market Corporation; Linglong He, CIO of Quicken Loans; Lorron James, vice president of business affairs at James Group International; Tricia Keith, senior vice president, corporate secretary and services at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan; and Frank Venegas Jr., chairman and CEO of Ideal Group. The session was moderated by Richard DeVore, regional vice president of Detroit and Southeast Michigan at PNC Bank.