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April 30: Fortune’s Nina Easton to Moderate Entrepreneurship Panel at Mackinac Policy Conference; Education Reform Coalition Supports Smarter Balanced Test

Fortune’s Nina Easton to Moderate National Entrepreneur Panel at Mackinac Policy Conference

Nina Easton, the Washington Bureau Chief at Fortune Magazine and a commentator on Fox News, will moderate a panel discussion on entrepreneurship at the 2014 Mackinac Policy Conference. Discussion will expound on how entrepreneurs can overcome obstacles and capitalize on emerging opportunities in today’s economy.

Speakers will explore the opportunities and challenges facing today’s entrepreneurs, focusing on failure as a learning experience. Easton will be joined by a panel of national entrepreneurs, including:

  • Peter Gardner, Founder and CEO, Startgrid
  • Adam Lowry, Co-Founder, Method
  • Eric Ryan, Co-Founder, Method
  • Jason Sosa, Founder and CEO, IMRSV

The panelists will explain how startup failures can serve as learning experiences, and describe the business environment needed for startups and innovators to thrive.

To view complete Conference information, including an updated agenda and lineup of speakers, click here.

The Chamber announced the launch of Startgrid at the Detroit Policy Conference. To learn more about this online community platform for entrepreneurs, click here.

Education Reform Coalition Urges Legislature to Adopt Smarter Balanced Assessment System

The Chamber and a coalition of organizations sent a letter to state lawmakers urging them to fund the Smarter Balanced test, a proposed replacement for the outdated Michigan Education Assessment Program. The letter stems from a recent Education Trust-Midwest report that revealed that Michigan has regressed in student performance in certain areas compared to other states.

Drawing support from a coalition of organizations around the state, including Business Leaders for Michigan and the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, the Smarter Balanced test would help measure students’ progress on Common Core standards and raise levels of teaching better than any other assessment option. The Chamber has supported the adoption of Common Core standards and the Smarter Balanced test to ensure students receive the education needed to provide Michigan with a globally competitive workforce. To read the full Smarter Balanced press release, click here.

MICHauto’s Glenn Stevens Highlights Today’s Intelligent Mobility Event with WWJ’s Jeff Gilbert

Glenn Stevens, the Chamber’s vice president of MICHauto and strategic development, recently joined Jeff Gilbert of WWJ Newsradio 950 to discuss the Driving Intelligent Mobility in Michigan event taking place this evening, from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at Westin Book Cadillac in Detroit.

The event will showcase how to position Michigan to capitalize on emerging technology to sustain its role as the global leader in the intelligent mobility sector. Programming will focus on how Michigan can utilize its existing automotive assets – a strong engineering talent pool, an extensive base of major OEMs, and testing facilities for connected cars – to ensure that this technology is developed and integrated in Michigan, versus other areas of the U.S. or world. For more information on the event and to register, click here.

Model D Launching Series to Highlight the Detroit Region’s Dynamic Food and Agriculture Industry

In partnership with the Detroit Food and Agriculture Network (DFAN), which the Chamber is a proud member of, Model D is launching a 10-month series to share the story and economic impact of the Detroit region’s food and agriculture industry. The series will highlight the diversity of the scale and type of food businesses throughout the region, and explore what is needed to start a food business in Detroit. To read the first of this 10-part series, click here.

The Chamber also highlighted the emerging food economy in the September/October edition of its Detroiter Magazine. Click to read The ‘Whole Food’ Picture.