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Business Leaders for Michigan is an organization dedicated to making Michigan a "Top Ten" state for jobs, personal income and a healthy economy. Serving as the state's business roundtable, Business Leaders for Michigan is composed of the chairpersons, chief executives or most senior executives of the state’s largest job providers and universities. Read more...

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Entries in Michigan (11)


Michigan's University Research Corridor Makes Strong Showing among Eight Leading U.S. Research Clusters


LANSING, Mich. (Jan. 21, 2014) – Michigan’s University Research Corridor (URC) ranks high among eight university innovation clusters in a new measure that examines R&D spending, research commercialization and talent production, according to a new Economic Impact Report released today.

The URC – consisting of Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and Wayne State University – ranked second in the Innovation Power Ranking when compared to seven other major university research clusters in six states, including well-known hubs such as North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park, California’s Innovation Hubs and Massachusetts’ Route 128 Corridor.

The report, prepared by East Lansing, Mich.-based Anderson Economic Group (AEG), showed that the URC universities conferred 32,483 graduate and undergraduate degrees in 2012, more than any of the university innovation clusters the URC has benchmarked itself against since 2007. The URC also granted the highest number of medical degrees and second-highest number of high-demand degrees overall, saw its research and development spending rise to nearly $2.1 billion and continued to commercialize its research through patents and start-up companies.

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Business Leaders for Michigan Applauds Governor Snyder's Commitment to the State's Turnaround

DETROIT, Mich., January 16, 2014 — “Business Leaders for Michigan is pleased that Governor Snyder continues to focus on many of the priorities needed to continue Michigan’s turnaround,” said Doug Rothwell, President and CEO, Business Leaders for Michigan. “Our policy priorities for 2014 are continued sound fiscal management, fixing our roads, making college more affordable and accelerating job growth.

“We applaud the Governor’s effort to make Michigan even more welcoming to immigrants. Attracting immigrants with advanced academic degrees or entrepreneurial aspirations will help the state attract investment and create jobs.  Another critical step forward is reducing Michigan’s unemployment rate by giving more children the opportunity to get a community college or university degree.  To do that, we need to increase access and make college more affordable. We’re hopeful the Governor will recommend enough in his budget to stem the tide of rising tuition and look forward to working with the Administration and the Legislature to make Michigan a “top ten” state for jobs, personal income and a healthy economy.”




Most of state’s largest job providers add jobs in 2012; Plan more hiring in 2013

DETROIT, Mich., February 5, 2013Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, continues to forecast that Michigan’s economy will grow more than the U.S. economy over the next six to eighteen months.  The forecast is reinforced by 60 percent of BLM members planning to increase hiring in Michigan in just the next six months.  Nearly-two thirds added jobs in Michigan last year.    

“The avoidance of the fiscal cliff and slow, but steady domestic growth has boosted the overall economic outlook of Michigan’s largest job providers.  But they remain far more optimistic about Michigan vs. the nation’s economy by the largest margins we have seen since we started conducting these surveys in 2009,” said Doug Rothwell, President & CEO.  “The optimism of the state’s largest job providers for Michigan is based on progress made stabilizing the state’s finances, addressing long-term debt and structural budget deficits and improving the costs of doing business here.  These are the same issues they feel are not being addressed in Washington and are holding the national economy back from full recovery.  They demonstrated that optimism by adding jobs in Michigan last year and planning more this year.  Michigan is not an island and will be affected by slower national growth, but BLM members continue to believe we will out-perform the American economy over the next eighteen months.”

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Business Leaders for Michigan releases Fiscal Scorecard

Scorecard measures five indicators of fiscal health, shows promising turnaround in most areas. Pension costs need to be addressed.

DETROIT, Mich., May 17, 2012 – Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, today released the annual Michigan Fiscal Scorecard, “Assessing the Management of Michigan Governments”. This review of state and local government finances measures five indicators of fiscal health – revenue and expenditures, cash balances, reserves, pension obligations and debt levels-  and is part of BLM’s strategy to determine whether Michigan’s fiscal management practices are improving. The report was prepared for BLM by Anderson Economic Group, LLC.

“The Michigan Fiscal Scorecard gives us a clear picture of the progress the state and local governments are making in managing their finances, as well as identifying those areas that still need improvement, “ said Doug Rothwell, President & CEO, Business Leaders for Michigan. “As we continue to work to turn around Michigan and make it a Top Ten state for job, economic and personal income growth, this realistic review of the state’s fiscal health allows us to gauge how Michigan compares to other states, whether benchmarks are being met, and what steps need to be taken to ensure continued fiscal strength.”

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Business Leaders For Michigan Supports Increased University Funding Based On Performance And Accountability; Calls For Changes To Administration’s Plan

Urges state to shift from prison investment to university investment

LANSING, Mich., February 15, 2012 — Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, today in testimony before the Michigan Senate Appropriations Subcommittee for Higher Education at the State Capitol building, urged state policymakers to end the more than decade long trend of disinvesting in the state’s public universities and renew the state’s investment in one of Michigan’s greatest assets for driving job, economic, and personal income growth.

Patrick Doyle, President and Chief Executive Officer of Domino’s Pizza, and a BLM Board member, described Michigan’s public universities as key drivers for talent production, innovation, and economic growth in the state, and deserving of a higher priority in the budget process. “While many factors influence where a business decides to locate or expand, the quality of a region’s university system is a significant consideration, because every company wants access to the best talent. This fiscal year, Michigan will spend 76% more general fund dollars on prisons than we will on universities. Our public universities are a major driver of Michigan’s economy yet we are spending more on prisons than we are to help a Michigan student go to college. This investment strategy is upside down if we want to attract business investment and good paying jobs.”

Download the full press release

Download a copy of the Senate committee testimony



Download a copy of Doug Rothwell's House committee testimony