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.

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The Michigan Opportunity Podcast Now Airing on WJR’s The Great Voice

The Michigan Opportunity Podcast

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 50

Mark Kramer, President and CEO, SME

Unlocking the Earth's Secrets: Mark Kramer, President and CEO of SME, describes some unique and iconic projects, as well as the infrastructure under our feet. Geotechnical Engineering and Environmental Engineering related, SME Engineering has over 50 years of excellence behind iconic projects from Notre Dame Stadium to clean energy initiatives, the Gordie Howe Bridge and more.

Season - 3 Episode 48

Voices of Michiganders Across the State

The Voices storytelling initiative aims to share perspectives of Michiganders across all 83 counties. Join MEDC's CEO Quentin Messer and guests Nyshell Lawrence/Eaton, Brandee Cooke-Brown/Genesee, Nancie Oxley/Van Buren, and Benjamin Bartz/Gogebic as they share their compelling stories showcasing what it’s like to live and work in Michigan.

Season - 3 Episode 47

Dr. James M. Smith, President, Eastern Michigan University

Eastern Michigan University, founded in 1849, is moving forward for today’s challenges. Hear how President Dr. James M. Smith is charting a bold course for continuing the University’s 174-year legacy, including revising the University’s Strategic Plan, creating the position of Chief Diversity Officer and introducing the University’s Sustainability Commission.

Season - 3 Episode 44

Duc Abrahamson, Executive Director, Asian Pacific American Chamber of Commerce

The Asian Pacific American Chamber of Commerce (APACC) works to facilitate business relationships among Asian and U.S. based companies and to promote the economic advancement of Asian Pacific Americans. Join APACC Executive Director, Duc Abrahamson, as she explains the vision of her organization, her path to this position, and the compelling story on how she came to Michigan.

Season - 3 Episode 42

Zachary Kolodin, Chief Infrastructure Officer, Director of the Michigan Infrastructure Office & Reuben Sarkar, CEO at American Center for Mobility

Hear from Zachary Kolodin, Chief Infrastructure Officer and Director of the Michigan Infrastructure Office, and Reuben Sarkar, CEO at the American Center for Mobility — as they provide insights into the transformative effects of a clean hydrogen hub project. The Midwest Alliance for Clean Hydrogen (MachH2) is working to secure a substantial grant of up to $1 billion from the U.S. Department of Energy. This funding is earmarked for the development of regional supply chains focusing on the production, distribution, and utilization of clean hydrogen as a viable and sustainable green energy source.

Season - 3 Episode 38

Roberto Nicolas Vazquez, Mexican Consul in Detroit

The USMCA created one of the largest free trade zones in the world. Mexican Consul Roberto Nicolas Vazquez is at the heart of the Detroit-Windsor border crossing, hear him describe his unique diplomatic post and the services offered at the Consulate of Mexico in Detroit. He also talks about the future opportunities presented by the USMCA and the unique North American partnership.

Season - 3 Episode 37

Jon Kramer, President & CEO, OHM Advisors

Join Jon Kramer as he discusses OHM Advisor, a pioneering firm that's creating better places for people. This forward-thinking company includes engineering, planning, urban design, landscape architecture, surveying and construction engineering services all under one roof. This growing firm works with municipalities, state and federal agencies, Fortune 100 companies, developers, schools, universities and more. Recognized on ENR's Top 500 Design Firms, this full-service firm is definitely one to watch.

Season - 3 Episode 36

Kerry Duggan, Founder & CEO, SustainabiliD

Kerry C. Duggan, CEO and sustainability expert, founded SustainabiliD to help established organizations anticipate and address climate challenges through innovative climate technologies. Duggan's extensive experience includes serving as climate advisor to President Joe Biden and sitting on several boards and advisory boards.

Season - 3 Episode 35

Rich Bowman, Director of Policy at The Nature Conservancy in Michigan

Hear Rich Bowman discuss the fascinating organization, The Nature Conservancy of Michigan. As the Director of Policy, Rich has been working with the people of the Great Lakes State for decades to preserve its natural heritage. The organization remains dedicated to protecting Michigan's rivers, lakes, and lands while pursuing strategies that will ensure the vitality of its people, places, and wildlife for generations to come.

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.