Chamber President and CEO Issues Statement on Mark Schauer’s Campaign on Detroit Bankruptcy

Chamber CEO slams Schauer campaign’s irresponsible approach to Grand Bargain

“Governor Snyder’s bold leadership has put Detroit and Michigan on a path forward. Unfortunately, the Schauer-Brown campaign’s insistence to roll back the clock threatens to undermine the bipartisan Grand Bargain, which is the height of irresponsibility. This demonstrates candidate Schauer’s tremendous lack of leadership and risks putting one of America’s great cities on a road back to the failed policies that so many worked so hard to reverse. This is the clearest example yet that Governor Snyder is the leader needed to build a better Michigan.”

Sandy Baruah, President and CEO, Detroit Regional Chamber

Walsh College Launches Redesigned, Responsive Website for Multiple Platforms

Walsh College has unveiled a new, contemporary website at

The site has been redesigned with responsive technology to automatically fit content on all platform sizes including desktop, tablet, and mobile.

It is more user-friendly, provides ease of navigation, and allows visitors to quickly find information while enjoying a refreshed design.

Each graduate of Walsh College is instilled with an understanding of continuous business innovation, which is precisely what the College reiterates first-hand with its redesigned website. The new look and feel of the site supports Walsh College’s reputation as one of the premier business colleges in Southeast Michigan.

To view the new Walsh College website, visit

Fall registration begins Monday, August 11, 2014 and classes begin Wednesday, September 24, 2014.

Founded in 1922, Walsh College, one of Southeast Michigan’s largest business schools, offers upper-division undergraduate and graduate business and technology degrees and certificate programs at locations in Troy, Novi, Clinton Township, and Port Huron, as well as online. Walsh’s business services division offers the Walsh Institute, designed to provide solutions for businesses through training, continuing education and consulting. Walsh is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (; phone: 312-263-0456). The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP, accredits specific degree programs.

Brenda Meller/Walsh College Marketing Director or 248.823.1205
Alicia Boltach/Account Supervisor at Airfoil Public Relations or 248.304.1453
Paul Chambers/CEO, Core 3 Solutions or 248.530.1000 ext. 107

Eliminate personal property tax, make Michigan more competitive

From The Detroit News

July 28, 2014

By Maureen Krauss

I hear it in every state the Detroit Regional Chamber travels to: “Get rid of the personal property tax — then let’s talk.” That’s the reaction from potential investors across the country as they consider moving their operations and jobs to Michigan. Those same site selectors will be keenly aware of how Michigan residents vote on Proposal 1 on Aug. 5.

A “yes” vote on Proposal 1 is a game-changer. It removes the outdated tax known as the personal property tax and makes Michigan more competitive in attracting jobs and investment. With Michigan’s reinvention well underway, taking that comeback to the next level requires attracting more investment from outside the state.

Unfortunately, when businesses consider locating in Michigan, they have to face paying the PPT on equipment they use to do business, every single year, on the very same piece of equipment.

So that advanced manufacturing equipment they purchase to produce high-tech automotive parts or medical devices could cost them the same tax, year after year, for decades. That’s not exactly a welcome mat.

The PPT also impacts businesses and communities across Michigan.

Businesses here pay that cost, putting them at a tremendous disadvantage when their competitors in neighboring states don’t have to.

That’s money that could be used to expand and create jobs. At the same time, Michigan’s local communities have struggled for years with the unpredictable revenue fluctuations the PPT produces.

The positives of voting “yes” on Proposal 1 are overwhelming.

■ It eliminates the PPT and will allow businesses to create thousands of new jobs in Michigan and bring in millions of dollars in additional investment.

■ It stabilizes local communities by providing funding for 100 percent of the estimated PPT revenue lost for important local services like police, fire, schools, jails and libraries.

■ Proposal 1 is not a tax increase. It is paid for by eliminating special corporate tax breaks that the Michigan Legislature has already voted to end, and by establishing a statewide Essential Services Assessment paid only by manufacturers receiving a PPT reduction.

Currently, Proposal 1 has broad statewide support. The Detroit Regional Chamber is part of the Michigan Citizens for Strong and Safe Communities, a bipartisan coalition supporting Proposal 1, which includes tens of thousands of members representing police, fire, education, local government, small business, labor and agriculture groups.

Eliminating the personal property tax with a “yes” vote on Proposal 1 is the next step in Michigan’s comeback — and a win for the entire state. It also sends a message to those investors across the country: Michigan is open for business.

Maureen Krauss is vice president of economic development for business attraction for the Detroit Regional Chamber.

Rally House Opens Two Stores in Metro Detroit

LENEXA, Kan. (July 28, 2014) – Rally House has expanded its presence with two new stores in Detroit, marking the company’s first stores in the Detroit metro area.

At its newest locations at 4836 S Baldwin Road, Orion, Mich. and 14257 Hall Road, Shelby, Mich., the specialty gift store features a large and unique product selection for a variety of local teams, including Detroit Tigers, Lions, Red Wings and Pistons, Michigan Wolverines, Michigan State Spartans, and other regional teams.

“We are excited to open expand our reach into Detroit,” said Rally House CEO Aaron Liebert. “We look forward to delivering a unique store experience that offers an unmatched selection of Tigers, Lions, Red Wings, Wolverines and Spartans merchandise in a town that is very passionate about their local teams.”

The location in Shelby will act as the company’s second “super store,” housing 20,000 square feet of local team apparel and gifts, including authentic jerseys, vintage t-shirts, party supplies, auto accessories and more featuring exclusive designs.

About Rally House

Rally House began in 1989 as Kansas Sampler, a mail-order company founded by Peg and Tim Liebert that specialized in local and regional gifts. Rally House currently operates stores throughout Kansas, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas with plans to continue expansion into Michigan in 2014. The company stays true to its roots by offering a great selection of team-related apparel and gifts, including exclusive designs found only at Rally House. For more information, please visit


IPS Technology Services’ President Pradip Sengupta Nominated for Corp! Magazine’s Michigan Salute to Diversity Awards

TROY, Mich., July 22, 2014 — Pradip Sengupta, President and Principal of Troy-based IPS Technology Services, was recently nominated to receive a Corp! Magazine’s Michigan Salute to Diversity Award.

This is Corp! Magazine’s 8th Year of honoring businesses and individuals in Michigan who have furthered the interests of diversity within their organizations and communities. Recipients of these awards are chosen based on their commitment to embrace both diversity and multiculturalism as it exists within an organization and also as it pertains to a company’s daily interactions with the community.

The award winners will be announced in Corp! Magazine’s July/August issue, and then these companies and individuals will be honored at The Salute to Diversity Conference and Awards on September 10 at MGM Grand Detroit Casino.

“I am humbled to have been nominated for the Corp! Magazine’s diversity award,” says Pradip Sengupta, “Diversity is an integral part of what makes IPS Technology Services continue to grow in success year after year.”

IPS Technology Services embraces diversity as an essential component of a growing global marketplace. Please feel free to contact us at or call 248-526-9000.

About IPS Technology Services

IPS Technology Services provides end-to-end IT services. IPS develops custom applications using state of the art tools such as .Net, C#, VB, SaaS, SOA, Oracle, SQL Server, and/or by using third party software. IPS provides IT services in the following six areas:

1. IT Staffing (SharePoint, Oracle, Java, Dot Net, SQL Server, SAP, PM)
2. Technology Consulting, SharePoint, Enterprise Architecture, Best Practices
3. Web based Enterprise and Mobile Application Development and Integration
4. Healthcare IT with EHR and Practice Management implementation
5. Engineering IT services
6. Website development, Digital Marketing, and Social Media

For more information on IPS Technology Services, please call 248-526-9000, send an email to or click

Butzel Long attorney named a graduate of Leadership Oakland’s Class LOXXIV; Ziyad I. Hermiz is one of 47 graduates of year-long program

DETROIT, Mich. – Butzel Long attorney Ziyad I. Hermiz is one of 47 business and non-profit professionals who completed the requirements for Leadership Oakland, a year-long leadership development program. The class of LOXXIV gained leadership insight personally, professionally and through public awareness and service.

Based in Butzel Long’s Detroit office, Hermiz concentrates his practice in the area of business litigation and was named a Michigan Super Lawyers Rising Star (Business Litigation) 2012-2013.

Hermiz also has served as a coordinator for the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association’s Access to Justice Program’s legal clinic, providing pro bono legal services. In 2011, he was honored during the Legal Aid and Defender Association, Inc.’s First Annual Laddy’s Pro Bono Awards Ceremony for exceptional pro bono volunteer service.
Prior to joining Butzel Long, Mr. Hermiz interned for the Honorable Judge Avern Cohn for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan (2007-2008).

Hermiz recently served as the Vice President of the Chaldean American Bar Association. He is a member of the State Bar of Michigan and the American Bar Association. Hermiz is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.

Hermiz is a graduate of The University of Detroit Mercy School of Law (J.D., cum laude, 2008), where he was the Executive Editor of the University of Detroit Mercy Law Review and received the Dean’s Scholarship for Academic Excellence. Moreover, he was inducted into the Justice Frank Murphy Honor Society, honoring graduates with outstanding academic achievement. He completed his undergraduate business studies at Michigan State University (B.A., with honors, 2004) where he was the recipient of the Phillip and Viola May Scholarship.

About Butzel Long

Butzel Long is one of the leading law firms in the United States. It was founded in 1854, making this year its 160th anniversary of providing trusted client service. Butzel’s full-service offices are located in Detroit, Bloomfield Hills, Lansing and Ann Arbor, Mich.; New York, NY; and, Washington, D.C., as well as alliance offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Mexico City and Monterrey. It is an active member of Lex Mundi, a global association of 160 independent law firms. Learn more by visiting

Kyle Entsminger

Innovation Manager, Visteon

Kyle EntsmingerAs Innovation Manager for Visteon Corporation, Kyle is responsible for developing new product concepts for tomorrow’s vehicle owners. Over the past three years, Kyle has worked on dozens of projects that received acclaim from both customers and journalists. During this time, he has successfully adapted numerous emerging consumer technologies to create compelling automotive designs. Kyle has a strong background in design, graphics, and software that was cultivated outside of the traditional automotive career path. Leveraging this experience, he is able to apply cutting-edge techniques to create user experiences that are pushing the boundaries of the automotive industry.

Prior to joining Visteon, Kyle had over 10 years of experience working in both the feature film and video game industries. While in the film industry, he produced visual effects for numerous movies, such as: “Exorcism of Emily Rose”, “Chronicles of Riddick”, “Constantine”, and “Mr. and Mrs. Smith.” Following his stint in Hollywood, Kyle moved on to become the CEO and Creative Director of Perpetual FX Creative.

Kyle holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Savannah College of Art and Design, majoring in Computer Art with a specialty in Visual Effects.

Nigel Francis

Senior Automotive Advisor, State of Michigan; Senior Vice President, Automotive Industry Office

Francis NigelNigel Francis is senior automotive adviser to the state of Michigan and senior vice president, Automotive Industry Office, Michigan Economic Development Corporation. Francis is charged with developing, implementing and executing a comprehensive strategic plan and road map to promote, retain and grow the automotive industry in Michigan. He serves as the state’s central connection point for automotive industry stakeholders and engages with them to drive action that supports the industry and Michigan’s overall economic growth strategy.

Francis comes to state government with 29 years of executive experience in the global automotive sector encompassing both technical and technology management in North America, Europe and Asia. He has worked with multinational senior management both at OEMs and Tier I suppliers. Nigel has a global awareness of startups, small, medium and large corporations, turnarounds, and mergers and acquisitions.

Francis has held executive level positions at OEM and Tier I companies in North America and Europe, including chief engineering and program management for Tata Technologies; COO and chief technology officer at Trexa LLC; executive vice president, Bright Automotive; vice president, vehicle engineering at Mercedes-Benz Technology, and several C-level positions in product development and technology.

Ralph Gilles

President and CEO – Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC; Senior Vice President – Product Design, Chrysler Group LLC

Ralph GillesRalph Gilles was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer – Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC in June 2011. He continues to lead the company’s Product Design Office as Senior Vice President, a position he was named to in June 2009. Gilles also served as President and CEO – SRT Brand and President and CEO – Dodge brand.

Since first joining the former Chrysler Corporation in 1992 as a designer, Gilles has put his extensive academic background in industrial design and business administration to use, holding various positions within the company. He is extremely active inside and outside Chrysler, serving as the executive sponsor of the Chrysler African American Network in addition to playing a leading role with the Chrysler Global Diversity Council. He also serves on the board of McLaren Oakland in Pontiac, Mich. At his alma mater, The College for Creative Studies (CCS) in Detroit, Gilles serves on the CCS Board of Trustees and the CCS Capital Committee.

Gilles holds a Master of Business Administration from Michigan State University and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial Design from CCS in Detroit.

Detroit is home to the fastest growing e-commerce company in the country

Detroit — Chalkfly is a Detroit startup with a mission to change the way the world buys office supplies, and we’re excited to announce that we’re the fastest growing e-commerce company ranked by Internet Retailer in 2014. Chalkfly has achieved the highest growth rate out of all of the companies ranked by Internet Retailer, on both the First and Second 500 lists, and tops the Second 500 list two years in a row.

After just two years in business, Chalkfly has provided its many consumer and business customers with exceptional customer service, 365-day returns and an opportunity to give back to their community with every purchase. Each customer can choose a teacher to receive 5% back from their order — giving students and teaches with the supplies they need to succeed in school. Chalkfly’s Giveback has empowered customers to contribute to over 3,000 teachers around the country.

“We are extremely lucky to be part of the entrepreneurial renaissance that’s happening in Detroit. Our customers and incredible team have allowed us to change the dynamics of how office and schools supplies are sold. As we grow, our give back to students and teachers grows. That’s what makes this ranking from Internet Retailer truly exciting.” said Chalkfly’s Co-founder, Andrew Landau.

Chalkfly was founded in 2012 when brothers, Andrew and Ryan Landau returned from working out-of-state at Google and IBM. They came back to their home state and set up shop in Detroit to reinvent the experience of buying office and school supplies. In 2013, Chalkfly received $750,000 in Series A funding from Detroit Venture Partners, Ludlow Ventures, Start Garden, Griffon Ventures and Bizdom. Their office is located in downtown Detroit’s M@dison building, which serves as startup incubator.