Who drives the best ideas for forwarding Detroit? Just ask Kid Rock, Gov. Rick Snyder, civic leader Cynthia Pasky and entrepreneur Nailah Ellis of Ellis Island Tea. They give hearty support to a new, upbeat strategy, www.DetroitDriven.org.
“Organizations like Detroit Driven are helping tell the stories of the people working to turn Detroit around and tell why Detroit matters to Michigan and the nation,” said Snyder. “I applaud their work and those who have stepped forward to help us revive this great American city.”
To be sure, Kid Rock delivers the voice-over for a hard hitting video introducing the Detroit Driven website. “We’re going to build on what we started, we’re a city that believes in itself,” the world famous singer said. “We’re challenged by decline and hard times but we’re powered by grit and determination.”
Look for events, social media, blogs and more as Detroit Driven (a 501-c-3) tells the story of a city on the rebound to its neighbors and the nation at large. Hatched by Washington D.C. communications firm, Agenda, it was presented to city leaders in 2012 around the time of the landslide election of Mayor Duggan. Among its officers are Sue Nelson (Finance Director), Chris Talbot (Social Media), and Tatiana Grant (Public Relations). The executive director, recruited and recommended by the mayor is Tupac Hunter.
The notion of Detroit Driven springs forward with the positive image of Detroit, evidenced by the huge investments by the corporate community, unprecedented involvement of the philanthropic community, the thriving entrepreneurial community, and other factors coalescing around the city’s renewal. Hunter, a young and forthright leader, stepped up to coordinate the new strategic effort as executive director.
“I believe this is going to work because we have the right mission at the right time to launch an effective public relations campaign on behalf of the city and we have a wide base of support from the business community and the stakeholders,” Hunter said. He added that Detroiters are some of the most interesting, creative and resilient people in the world whose stories power our collective future.
Among its board of luminaries includes Cynthia Pasky, CEO of Strategic Staffing Solutions in Detroit, Larry Alexander, CEO of the Detroit Metro Convention Bureau and Mary Kramer, publisher of Crain’s. Its community advisory board includes Tatiana Grant, CEO, Infused Public Relations & Events, Travis Michael, EEP Advisor, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Marge Sorge, veteran journalist and founder of Detroit News Hub, and Buzz Thomas, former state senator and principal, Thomas Consulting Group.
Hunter is an unabashed Detroiter who grew up on Detroit’s northwest side, attended the University of Detroit Jesuit High School, went away to Morehouse College in Atlanta and came back to work with the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. He served both the Michigan House and the Michigan Senate. He lives in the Eight Mile and Telegraph neighborhood and often visits Motown Museum with his family because it is the birthplace of the greatest musical genre ever produced and to Fishbones in Greektown for its Creole shrimp.
Look for some high wheeling fun and insight as DetroitDriven.com powers forward. Look for weekly social blogs on our website and Facebook and Twitter feeds. Look for more ideas to come. As Kid Rock says in the promotional video, “American made and Detroit Driven.” ###