Douglas C. Bernstein, Plunkett Cooney
The managing partner of Plunkett Cooney’s Banking, Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights Practice Group, Douglas C. Bernstein focuses his practice in the areas of commercial litigation, commercial loan restructuring and documentation, creditors’ rights, commercial and municipal bankruptcy, receiverships and other banking-related litigation and appeals on behalf of national and regional lenders and special servicers. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Plunkett Cooney and has a number of published appellate decisions to his credit. He is a member of several professional organizations and presents seminars to clients and industry organizations on commercial loan restructure, bankruptcy and litigation issues, and assisted the state of Michigan in the training of potential emergency managers and emergency financial managers.
Austin Black II, City Living Detroit
Austin Black II is the founder of City Living Detroit; a full-service real estate brokerage that is headquartered in Detroit's thriving Midtown neighborhood. His firm specializes in properties located in Detroit with a focus on downtown, the growing riverfront, the cultural center, and the city's historic neighborhoods. He is a graduate of Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, College of Architecture, Art and Planning where he studied redevelopment projects abroad and earned a Bachelor of Science in Urban and Regional Studies. After visiting more than 20 cities in Europe and Italy and earning a degree concentrated on real estate and urban redevelopment, Austin returned home to put his knowledge and passion into making Detroit a better place to live, work and raise a family.
Gary A. Brown, City of Detroit
Gary A. Brown was appointed Chief Operations Officer to the City of Detroit by Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr effective July 1, 2013. His duties and responsibilities include the oversight, management and restructuring of multiple city agencies. He was elected to a four-year term as Detroit City Council President Pro Tem in 2009. As President Pro Tem, he serves as the Chair of the Public Health and Safety Standing Committee which oversees police, fire, EMS, dangerous buildings, water and sewerage, health services, and transportation. He represents the Detroit City Council as a board member of the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG), the Detroit Historical Society, and the Eastern Market District. In March 2011, he was appointed by the National League of Cities to its Public Safety and Crime Prevention Policy and Advocacy Committee.
Lt. Governor Brian Calley, State of Michigan
Prior to becoming America's youngest lieutenant governor in 2011, Calley spent a decade in the private sector working as a community banker helping entrepreneurs grow or maintain Michigan-based jobs and operations. As an Ionia County commissioner, Calley advocated for transparency and accountability. He became a state representative in 2007 and served as the ranking Republican on the House Tax Policy Committee. As lieutant governor in partnership with Governor Snyder, Calley played a key role in Michigan's recent tax overhaul.
David Carroll is Quicken Loans’ “Vice President of Miscellaneous Stuff.” He joined Quicken Loans in 1991 and over the years has been responsible for a variety of areas, including mortgage operations, technology, Legal and Human Resources. Currently, he is involved with all of Quicken Loans Detroit initiatives, including real estate acquisition and use, space planning, incentive programs, community affairs and government relations. Prior to joining Quicken Loans, David worked as an attorney in the real estate department of Chapman and Cutler, a Chicago law firm. He currently serves as a board member of New Detroit, JARC, Junior Achievement of Southeastern Michigan, Bizdom, the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation and the Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation. David received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Michigan and a law degree from the University of Michigan Law School.
Andres Duany, Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company
Andres Duany is an architect whose work focuses on the planning of communities. He and his wife, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, founded their practice Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company in 1980, at the time of their design of Seaside, which began an ongoing debate on the alternatives to suburban sprawl.
Since then, DPZ, their planning practice, has completed well over two hundred downtown and new town plans. They have particular expertise in writing codes. This work has generally been received with awards and publication. Their firm currently has six partners and employs about 30 persons dedicated to both practice and research.
Dan Gilmartin is the executive director and chief executive officer of the Michigan Municipal League. Through his work with communities, Dan is recognized as a national leader in the fields of urban revitalization, placemaking, local government reform, and transportation policy. He was recently invited to address an international placemaking conference that included members of the United Nations in Stockholm, speaking on the cutting edge work being done on placemaking in Michigan. Model D Media has referred to him as “an urban thinker with an eye for the small, oft-unnoticed changes that can make ‘places’ out of streets and buildings.” Dan serves as a member of the Michigan Future, Inc. Leadership Council. He also served for four years as the lead advocate for Michigan’s communities in Lansing and in Washington, where he concentrated on a number of key issues including transportation, land use, and urban redevelopment. In 2010, Dan added radio talk show host to his resume as host of The Prosperity Agenda on News/Talk 760 WJR, which is Michigan’s highest-rated talk station and can be heard throughout the Midwest and Canada. He is a frequent blogger and a contributing author to the book The Economics of Place, and a frequent speaker on matters pertaining to “place.”
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
As vice president of corporate communications, Andy Hetzel is responsible for communications strategy and brand positioning for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, and serves as corporate spokesperson on major issues. His department directs all internal and external communications capabilities for the company, including public relations, advertising, marketing communications, publications, social media and employee communications. He previously served in executive and leadership roles in agency public relations and in state government in Michigan and New York.
George W. Jackson, Jr., Detroit Economic Growth Corporation
George W. Jackson, Jr. became president and CEO of Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) in February, 2002. The private nonprofit corporation is devoted exclusively to supporting Detroit's economic development projects and initiatives by providing technical, financial, negotiation, and development assistance to the city and the private sector business community. Under Jackson's leadership, DEBC has led or played a key role in dozens of landmark projects including the Lower Woodward Improvement Program for Superbowl XL, and the transformation of the Detroit Riverfront from industrial to multi-use recreational, residential and commercial. He also served as chief development officer for the city from 2006 to 2010, and is a past chair and current board member fo the NextEnergy Corporation, committed to making Michigan a world leader in alternative energy.
Saunteel Jenkins, Detroit City Council
Saunteel Jenkins is a lifelong Detroiter who was elected to Detroit City Council in 2009. Prior to her election she served as director of the residential treatment program at Mariners Inn, a shelter and treatment center for men who are homeless or drug-addicted. She has also worked as a social worker helping troubled youth and adults. Prior to that, she worked as a national business development director for a private education company offering free tutoring to low-income children. As a Detroit city council member, Jenkins currently serves as chair of the Planning and Economic Development Committee and the City Council Rules Special Committee, and is a trustee for the General Retirement System.
Jane Hudson Ridley, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services
Jane Ridley is a senior director in US Public Finance, serving as the analytic manager and team leader for the State and Local Government Department’s Great Lakes group at Standard & Poor’s Ratings Service. Ridley’s areas of expertise also include charter schools and S&P’s Financial Management Assessment scoring tool. Prior to 2001, she was a vice president in the Municipal Securities Group at Banc of America Securities and was an analyst at PaineWebber. She is a member of the National Federation of Municipal Analysts.
Frank Shafroth, Center for Public Governance, George Mason University
Frank Shafroth has served as director of the Center for State and Local Leadership within the Center for Public Governance at George Mason University since January 2011. His column, "The Tax Doctor" appears in State Tax Notes, covering key state and local tax issues and developments. He is also an adjunct professor in public policy and intergovernmental relations at George Washington University and an assistant professor in public administration at George Mason University. His past leadership roles include a wide range of work in government relations at the state and federal level.
Dr. Eric Scorsone, Advisor to Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr
Dr. Eric Scorsone is a nationally recognized expert in municipal finance and administration who currently serves as an advisor to Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr. He is a faculty member for State and Local Government Finance in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics at Michigan State University. Scorsone has been widely cited on state and local government finance issues by major media outlets around the world including NY Times, Reuters, and Wall Street Journal. His area of expertise is related to financial emergencies and assessing financial health among public and nonprofit organizations. He has worked with municipalities including Lansing, Flint, Saginaw, Inkster, Livingston County, and Grand Rapids.
Dayne Walling, City of Flint
Dayne Walling is currently serving his second term as mayor of the city of Flint. A Flint native, Walling is a graduate of Flint Central High School and has the distinct honor of being Flint’s only Rhodes Scholar. His past professional experience includes: owner and manager of 21st Century Performance, work with the Genesee County Land Bank’s affiliated Genesee Institute, and founder of Flint Club. Mayor Walling has also worked with the Urban Coalition of Minnesota. He was an aide to Washington DC Mayor Anthony Williams, and worked for U.S. Congressman Dale Kildee. His educational background includes a Master of Arts in Urban Studies from Goldsmith's College, University of London.