Wes Moore: Inclusive, Broad and Transparent Conversations Matter

Taking Michigan’s Center Stage, renowned social advocate Wes Moore, CEO of the Robin Hood Foundation and best-selling author of “The Work: My Search for a Life That Matters,” shared his personal journey from poverty to dedicating his life to improving the lives of underprivileged youth and veterans. Moore explained that inclusion is the first step to shrink the opportunity gap and enhance quality of life in communities that feel left behind.

Key Takeaways:

  • With various instances of public discourse between police and minority youth in the country, it is important to acknowledge and understand the state of the neighborhoods these instances are taking place in. If the context in which this discourse exists in is not understood, then the real changes that are needed will not be made.
  • Innovation and change is happening faster than we can realize, but for an individual that lives in underserved communities in Michigan or the country, he or she cannot tell.
  • It is important to never forget about who it is that we need to fight for and who it is we need to be remembering because there will never be inclusive conversations if only a sliver of the population’s voices are heard.
  • When decisions are made for the future of Michigan’s neighborhoods–inclusive, broad and transparent conversations matter.
  • Communities should feel a sense of inclusion and that they are part of important conversations.
  • Poverty is a function of systemic action and choice. It was not one action that led to it, therefore it will not take one action to solve it. A collection of entities is needed to address these issues and if government and philanthropy come together, solutions can be found.
  • When looking at education in impoverished communities, the quality of kids’ education and access to opportunity must be first and foremost when decisions are made.

“There is not a single issue that the folks in this room could not make something happen on. There’s that level of influence, power and significance here,” Moore told Conference attendees. “The future of Michigan will not be bright unless we are being very deliberate about what it means for areas like Flint, and areas like Saginaw and the Upper Peninsula and Detroit.”

Following Moore’s keynote address, Stephen Henderson, editorial page editor for the Detroit Free Press, joined him on stage for a one-on-one conversation. This session was sponsored by PNC Bank and falls under the Conference pillar of increasing economic opportunity.

Four National Speakers Added to 2017 Conference Lineup

Hear from four national speakers that will take Michigan’s Center Stage during the 2017 Mackinac Policy Conference. This year’s Conference will drive statewide dialogue centered around the key pillars of: restoring civility in American politics, winning the race in connected technology and increasing economic opportunity to move Michigan forward.

Michael Beschloss
Michael Beschloss
Best-selling Author, “Presidential Courage”; Presidential Historian

In an effort to restore civility in American politics, presidential historian Michael Beschloss will give a behind-the-scenes look at leadership styles of past presidents and share insight on President-elect Donald Trump following his first few months in office.

Geoff Colvin
Geoff Colvin
Senior Editor-at-Large, Fortune Magazine

As Michigan capitalizes on its position as a leader in next-generation mobility, Geoff Colvin will talk about the importance of leading ahead of what’s next to think beyond the “connected car” to the connectivity of all things and big data.

Wes Moore
Wes Moore
Founder and CEO, BridgeEDU;
Best-selling Author, “The Work”

U.S. veteran, acclaimed author and youth advocate, Wes Moore, will share how the transformative power of education along with other economic inclusion strategies can shrink the opportunity gap and enhance the quality of life for all Michiganders. This keynote is sponsored by PNC Bank.

Julie Winokur
Julie Winokur
Executive Director, Talking Eyes Media

Filmmaker Julie Winokur will encourage attendees to stop bickering about politics and pull up a chair to the table to make politics an acceptable topic for dinner conversation again. Winokur’s movement and documentary, “Bring It to the Table,” aims to bridge political divides and break down partisanship.

View the full Conference speaker lineup, including CNN’s Stephanie Cutter, Aspen Institute’s Walter Isaacson and MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace, by visiting mpc.detroitchamber.com.