The Michigan Opportunity

Through dynamic discussion, The Michigan Opportunity markets the state and promotes Michigan as a world-class business location. The podcast serves as a forward-thinking voice for Michigan as a conduit to global trends and applications in the new global economy.


This Just In:
The Michigan Opportunity Podcast Now Airing on WJR’s The Great Voice

The Michigan Opportunity Podcast

Season - 4 Episode 6

Jon Will, President and Founder, Michigan Fastener

Hear Jon Will share the story of how he and his family built the business, from garage to a successful family owned, innovative entrepreneurial asset to Michigan. Michigan Fastener truly embraces the methodology of Making it in Michigan. The company produces a wide variety of Michigan-made nails and fasteners out of there shop in North Branch.

Season - 4 Episode 5

Todd Brassard, Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, and Dr. Meredith LaBeau, Chief Technology Officer, Calumet Electronics Corp.

Deep in Copper Country, advanced manufacturing company Calumet Electronics engineers and develops microchip circuit boards for a broad list of industries. Hear from Todd Brassard, Vice President/Chief Operations Officer, and Dr. Meredith LaBeau, Chief Technology Officer, about the company’s award-winning research, design, engineering, and manufacturing specializing in high-quality printed circuit boards.

Season - 4 Episode 4

Dr. E’Lois Thomas, President, Solutions for Energy Efficient Logistics (SEEL)

Listen to Dr. E’Lois Thomas, PHD, President of SEEL, LLC talk about the nationally ranked logistics solutions company that prioritizes innovation and efficiency, while playing a vital role in driving sustainable energy practices and advancing program effectiveness in the industry. SEEL is a nationally certified minority business enterprise (MBE) service-disabled, veteran-owned (DVBE) energy efficiency program implementation contractor and also a Top 20 Fastest Growing Women-Owned/Led companies in the country.

Season - 4 Episode 3

Joe Steele, Vice President, Communications and Legislative Affairs, LIFT

Hear from Joe Steele, Vice President of Communications and Legislative Affairs at LIFT, explain how this Detroit-based public-private partnership is designed to help develop and deploy advanced lightweight metal manufacturing technologies, as well as implement education and training programs to better prepare the workforce today and in the future.

Season - 4 Episode 2

Danny Ellis, CEO, SkySpecs

Michigan-based SkySpecs achieves a global reach through office that span 6 continents with Danny Ellis at the helm. A trailblazer in the realm of wind energy technology, SkySpecs has redefined the landscape of renewable energy asset management, providing tailored technologies and services that elevate industry standards in productivity, efficiency, and returns.

Season - 4 Episode 1

Xinyu Wu, Director of Visiting International Professional Program

Listen to Xinyu Wu, Director of Visiting International Professional Program; Director of the Office of China Program; and Executive Director of Michigan Council of Citizen Diplomacy, as she discusses the unique Visiting International Professional Program through Michigan State University. With 315 international participants from 58 countries and five continents and offers programs in more than 10 different U.S. cities, this program provides cutting-edge professional training and exchange programs for international organizations and professionals.

Season - 3 Episode 54

Howard N. Handler, President, 313 Presents

Inspired by the soul of Detroit, 313 Presents produces more than 350 concerts, theatrical productions, sporting events and family shows a year. Howard N. Handler, President of 313 Presents, is responsible for leading the company’s vision and strategy as well as guiding operations, partnerships and long-term growth. Handler is an entertainment and sports industry innovator with a track record of success across a range of world class companies.

Season - 3 Episode 53

Katie MacIntosh, President and Founder Mac Worldwide

Join our high-energy guest Katie Macintosh, Founder of Mac Worldwide and a Detroit Homecoming Hollywood boomerang entrepreneur, as she explains her fascinating career in Hollywood and around the world in the genre of true docuseries and reality television shows. As a highly sought-after development partner, she has teamed up with several renown producers and production companies to deliver original concepts and stimulating casts. She has served on several industry panels and is an active member of The Television Academy, The Academy Museum and Film Independent.

Season - 3 Episode 52

Leo Kempel, Dean of the Michigan State University College of Engineering

The future of engineering at Michigan State University (MSU) is rich with diverse opportunities, boasting a comprehensive range of majors that cater to a wide array of interests and career paths. Under the leadership of Dean Leo C. Kempel, the Dennis P. Nyquist Endowed Professor of Electromagnetics and the ninth dean of the MSU College of Engineering, students can explore at least 10 distinct majors. The focus on continuous education emerges as a key element to keep Michigan at the forefront of advancements in the diversity of engineering fields.

Season - 3 Episode 51

Empowering Innovation: Midwest's Edward Lowe Foundation Teams Up with MEDC in a Dynamic Partnership to Fuel Small Business Growth

Dan Wyant, Chairman and President at Edward Lowe Foundation, and Rodney Parkkonen, Small Business Consultant at MEDC, discuss their unique and dynamic partnership that assists small businesses to thrive in Michigan. Dan also has experience with many previous leadership roles in state government and policy.

About the Host: Ed Clemente

Ed Clemente joined the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) in 2020 as the Senior Advisor for Trends and Development.

From 2012-2020, Clemente served as a two-term governor appointed Hearing Commissioner for the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC). Executing over 7,000 judicial Orders/Decisions, over the tenure of service. Prior joining the MLCC, Clemente launched Michigan’s Energy Innovation Business Council (EIBC) establishing it as 501c3 and 501c6 entity and serving as its first President.

Ed Clemente was elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in 2004 representing parts of southern Wayne County. During his three terms in the State House (2004-2010) he led task forces on electric vehicles, biosciences, film industry, Brownfield restoration, economic development, quality of life and advanced energy. Before his tenure as a public official, Clemente held several leadership roles at the Southern Wayne County Regional Chamber of Commerce, including President and Director Economic and Business Development. He also previously chaired the Economic Development Committee of the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments and was elected as a Trustee for Wayne County Community College District, serving four terms.

Clemente has earned degrees from Ferris State, Michigan State University and Sienna Heights Universities. Clemente was awarded with a prestigious fellowship to the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and The National Judicial College for Administrative Law. He graduated from several political leadership development programs, including Leadership Detroit, Michigan Political Leadership Program, and Leadership 21. He is a previous small business owner and has taught at Northwood University. Additionally, he hosts a “Critical Conversations” podcast and is a member of the Workforce Advisors for Wayne County Community College. Ed serves on the Board of Directors for Global Ties Detroit and the Motor Cities National Heritage Area. An avid traveler, Ed has visited more than 80 countries and territories, 150+ UNESCO World Heritage sites, many to play rugby tournaments, others for professional exchange and some for just intellectual curiosity.

The Michigan Opportunity is brought to you by Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). In collaboration with more than 100 economic development partners, MEDC markets Michigan as the place to do business, assists businesses in their growth strategies and fosters the growth of vibrant communities across the state.