Michelle Rhee Tackling Education Reform Head On

“You cannot tell me that teachers don’t matter. They matter tremendously and we as a country need to think about what we can do to ensure there is a highly effective teacher in every classroom every day,” said Michelle Rhee during her morning keynote address.

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Michigan Entrepreneurs Focus on the Positive Story of Detroit


The 2013 Mackinac Policy Conference pillar of cultural change was on full display this morning as some of Michigan’s leading entrepreneurs discussed the successes and challenges they’ve had in starting a business in Michigan and in Detroit during “Encouraging Entrepreneurship: The Catalyst for Continued Economic Growth in Michigan.” The panel agreed that the positive image and story of Detroit needs to be exposed and touted to encourage continued investment and entrepreneurship.

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Detroit’s Legacy Leaders Share Optimism for the Future


The notion of standing for change and being vocal Detroit advocates dominated a panel discussion this morning, with particular emphasis on the importance and impact on continued investment in the Motor City – whether it be in time or other resources. A group of generational leaders from some of Detroit’s most influential families took the Conference stage for the second Detroit-focused panel discussion, “Detroit: Legacy Leaders.”

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Detroit Leaders Discuss Continued Investment in City


There was an air of excitement and confidence in Detroit’s continued path to prosperity this morning as a panel of Detroit leaders representing some of the most influential organizations making a significant impact on the redevelopment of the city took this stage during “Detroit: On the Path to Turnaround,” the first in a two-part discussion on the Motor City.

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Secretary Gutierrez: ‘No One Will Catch U.S.’ if Immigration Reform is Done Right


If the United States gets immigration reform right, it will flourish in the 21st century. If Michigan gets immigration reform right, Detroit and cities throughout the state could be revitalized by entrepreneurship. That was the message former U.S. Secretary of Commerce and former CEO of the Kellogg Company delivered on the main stage this afternoon.

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Robert L. Johnson Talks Urban Revitalization During Afternoon Keynote


“To me, my story is simply that someone gave me a shot, gave me a chance, gave me an opportunity to prove what I could do,” said Robert L. Johnson during his keynote address earlier this afternoon. Johnson, founder and chairman of RLJ Companies and founder of Black Entertainment Television, centered his discussion on the role the private sector plays in urban redevelopment.

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Jeb Bush Talks Education, Immigration Reform During Opening Conference Keynote


In addressing an issue that often trascends traditional partisan divides, Governor Jeb Bush suggested the American education system is the biggest challenge the country and its workforce face. Bush, president of Jeb Bush and Associates and former Governor of Florida (1999-2007), also highlighted some of the lessons to be learned from Detroit’s revitalization during the first keynote address of the 2013 Conference following and introduction by Detroit Regional Chamber President and CEO Sandy K. Baruah.

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