Grand Rapids hosts Governor’s Economic Summit

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP/WOOD) — Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to share ideas about connecting Michigan residents to jobs during a two-day conference with business, academic and government leaders.

The Governor’s Economic Summit kicks off Monday at the DeVos Place Convention Center in Grand Rapids. Organizers say it’s a continuation of last year’s summit, and officials plan to explore ideas that emerged at that gathering in Detroit.

Snyder is scheduled to speak Tuesday. Michigan Economic Development Corp. President and Chief Executive Michael Finney gave opening remarks on Monday.

Many speakers Monday discussed what worked well in West Michigan’s economy and what may be replicated elsewhere.

Doug DeVos, who leads the multibillion dollar Amway business, said the summit’s goals should be opportunity and achievement. He stressed finding ways for the government, businesses and individuals to work together.

Local developer and entrepreneur Sam Cummings told summit attendees he was happy to live in the city he loved best and the one he sees as being a leader in downtown development and culture. He said the summit was a chance to “check in.”

Other speakers include George A. Erickcek, senior regional analyst at Upjohn Institute; Fred Keller, chairman and CEO of Cascade Engineering; and professor Jeff DeGraff of University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.

The summit will also feature pitches by job seekers, regional best practice presentations, breakout sessions, and an awards presentation.

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Online:

The 2014 Governor’s Economic Summit

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The Associated Press contributed to this report

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