Michigan's Economic Development Efforts Recognized with Silver Shovel Award

Friday, June 25, 2010

Publication says list of top projects 'refreshingly diversified'

LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced Area Development magazine has awarded Michigan a Silver Shovel, an award presented annually to states that have achieved significant success in terms of job creation and economic development. 

“This award is further evidence that our aggressive economic diversification plan is working, enabling us to successfully compete against other states and countries for new jobs and new investment,” Granholm said. 

Area Development polled states about their top 10 job creation and investment projects for 2009. Only those projects that began to materialize that year, either through money being spent or shovels put in the ground, were considered. The magazine recognized states based on the number of high value-added jobs per capita, amount of investment, number of new facilities and industry diversity. Michigan was recognized along with Florida and Texas in the “over 10 million population” category.

In its description of the winning states, Area Development said, “Long dependent on the auto industry for jobs and its tax base, Michigan’s list of top projects is refreshingly diversified, which reflects on the state’s recent emphasis on new industry categories, particularly alternative energy.” 

The projects highlighted by Area Development were: 

  • Advanced battery development and manufacturing by GM (Brownstown Township) and A123 Systems (Livonia); 
  • Solar panel development and manufacturing by Dow Corning in Thomas Township; 
  • Energetx Composite’s expansion of a wind-energy manufacturing facility in Holland; 
  • IT service expansions by GE Advance Manufacturing (Van Buren Township) and Systems in Motion (Pittsfield Township); 
  • An expansion by Farmers Insurance in Caledonia; 
  • The addition of new product lines by Roskam Baking in Kentwood; 
  • Magna Electronics diversifying to produce components for next-generation hybrid and electric vehicles in Grand Blanc Township; and, 
  • A new headquarters for next-generation chemical company Draths Corporation in Delhi Township. 

In addition to this latest honor by Area Development magazine, Michigan has been recognized this year as the No. 3 state for corporate expansions by Site Selection magazine and was also honored with seven Trade & Industry Development magazine CiCi Awards, a competition that recognizes the top 30 projects in North America in two categories, corporate investment and community impact. 

“All of these awards underscore Michigan’s competitive business climate, innovative economic development toolbox and outstanding workforce,” MEDC President and CEO Greg Main said. “Companies are investing in Michigan because we’ve taken the steps necessary to be a top location in which to do business.”  

Area Developmentmagazine is published bi-monthly and has more than 45,000 executive subscribers. For more details and a full list of this year’s Shovel Award winners, go to www.areadevelopment.com/awards.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life. 

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org. For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at www.michigan.org. Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.