(FLINT, Mich., June 14, 2016) – More than 100 top executives from across Michigan convened at the Flint & Genesee Chamber’s Leadership Summit – exceeding expectations – to discuss how the business community can help craft Flint’s vision for the future.  The meeting was held at the Flint Institute of Arts on Tuesday, June 14.

Attendees brought a wide range of expertise and experience from industries such as financial and professional services, education, government, manufacturing, healthcare, technology, and logistics.

The daylong event featured panel discussions, a community tour and ideation session with the goal of tapping ideas from attendees to learn what could apply to Flint and help expedite water crisis recovery efforts.

Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce CEO, Tim Herman, was very pleased with the dialogue and observations shared throughout the day.

“It was a productive day and we received a lot of positive feedback,” said Herman. “After hearing about and touring Flint, attendees had a newfound appreciation for the momentum the community has achieved, and there was a lot of interest in investing in the Flint area from an economic development standpoint.”

Attendees participated in an intensive interactive ideation session that focused on business/entrepreneurism, talent development and attraction, and creating a place where people want to live, work, and play in the Flint community.

Key observations and ideas from participants included:

  • Leveraging Flint’s inventory of real estate for redevelopment
  • Hosting a Flint Homecoming as a means to attract investment and jobs through expatriates
  • Redeveloping brownfield sites to be used for arts and culture
  • Creating innovation hubs to provide greater access to various capital sources
  • Infrastructure consolidation

The Leadership Summit was part of the larger Moving Flint Forward Initiative announced at the Flint & Genesee Chamber’s Annual Meeting in March. Launched in response to the Flint water emergency, the business and community development initiative seeks to address the immediate and long-term development needs arising out of, or magnified by, the crisis.

The Summit was sponsored by Deloitte and included chambers and boards from Detroit, Grand Rapids and the state of Michigan.