Detroit Regional Chamber > Detroit Policy Conference > Detroiters Share During First and Last Word at the 2023 Detroit Policy Conference

Detroiters Share During First and Last Word at the 2023 Detroit Policy Conference

January 11, 2023

The 2023 Detroit Policy Conference offered attendees the opportunity to hear Detroit’s First and Last Word at the beginning and end of the day at the Kresge Foundation Stage.

Detroit’s First Word on Driving Community Impact Through NeighborHUB 

Conversations during “Driving Community Impact Through NeighborHUB” emphasized that Detroiters have the skills and ideas to foster collaboration and change in their neighborhoods but need the opportunities to do so. Past recipients of the grant, Willie Bell, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Family Assistance for Renaissance Men, and Danielle North, Owner of Kidz Kingdom and Founder of Dream Studio Detroit, shared how the NeighborHUB program is creating these much-needed opportunities and offering “tangible support” to nonprofits and small businesses.

Detroit’s First Word on Equitable Property Tax Reform for Detroiters 

During the “Equitable Property Tax Reform for Detroiters” session, panelists addressed Detroit’s high property tax rates and the dire need to bring tax relief to its residents. The conversation revolved around the idea that “everyone who lives here is an investor in the city,” and those who have stayed and helped build Detroit up deserve additional support and the same encouragement as new investment.

Detroit’s First Word on The Future of Mobility

Closing Detroit’s First Word, conversations during “The Future of Mobility” session discussed the transformational work occurring to make Detroit an epicenter of mobility. All panelists expressed the need to make mobility ubiquitous to all. 

“We want to make sure [mobility] is for the benefit of everyone,” said Colleen Hau, Vice President of Applied Innovation at NewLab Detroit. “The future of mobility isn’t just for those who can afford expensive, electric vehicles. Mobility is for everyone.” 

Despite the wide range of content covered during Detroit’s First Word, the energy and excitement from the panelists to discuss Detroit’s future and the transformation of Downtown was apparent. 

Detroit’s Final Word on Workspace Design in a Post-COVID Era 

Detroit’s Final Word included conversations about “Workspace Design in a Post-COVID Era” that centered around the importance of having a presence in Downtown Detroit, how the future is more flexible than ever, and how office space is ever-changing. 

“The office is never done,” said Whitney Marx, Chief Executive Officer of MarxModa. “The only constant is change. The office should never be done.” 

One thing was made clear. In an ever-changing work environment, companies are more intentional about getting employees together and creating a space for connection. 

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