Amazon bid committee brings metro Detroit rivals together for common goal: Winning HQ2

The committee hoping to convince Amazon.com to locate a second headquarters in Detroit includes a long list of

The committee hoping to convince Amazon.com to locate a second headquarters in Detroit includes a long list of CEOs, political leaders and heads of nonprofit groups, bringing together political and business rivals united in a common goal.

The list, released today by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's office, has 59 names.

In addition to Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and Dan Gilbert, the founder and chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans, who was tapped to lead the effort, the committee includes the executives of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.

It has representatives from rival automakers GM and Ford.

 

Democrats and Republicans.

And even the presidents of the University of Michigan and Michigan State.

The committee also includes representatives from Windsor, making it a bid that involves international cooperation.

Still, it's unclear how much the committee members will be involved in the pitch, or how much the names will sway the Seattle-based company in its decision.

Communities nationwide are in a flurry of excitement as they seek to get Amazon's attention and win the big prize, a $5-billion corporate headquarters with 50,000 jobs, in what has been described as a "Shark Tank" for cities and the mother of all pitch competitions.

No matter how slim their chances, cities are rallying to submit proposals by the Oct. 19 deadline.

Gilbert has called Detroit a "legit contender" and emphasized that a bi-national bid — with Windsor joining Detroit — gives the area an edge over other metro areas, and is likely to make it unique among the pitches. 

Last week, Gilbert released a 30-second pump-up video on Twitter. 

Here's the full list of members:

  • Tonya Allen, president and CEO, Skillman Foundation
  • Gerry Anderson, chairman and CEO, DTE Energy
  • Dennis Archer Jr., CEO, Ignition Media Group
  • Rich Baird, transformation manager for Gov. Rick Snyder
  • Mary Barra, chairman and CEO, General Motors 
  • Sandy Baruah, president and CEO, Detroit Regional Chamber
  • Scott Benson, Detroit city councilman
  • Mike Bishop, congressman, Rochester
  • Brian Calley, Michigan lieutenant governor
  • Joann Chavez, chairman, Michigan Hispanic Chamber
  • Nedra Coleman, chief of staff to Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens
  • Jon Cotton, president, Meridian Health Plan
  • Matt Cullen, CEO, Jack Entertainment
  • Drew Dilkens, mayor of Windsor
  • Debbie Dingell, congresswoman, Dearborn
  • David DiRita, owner, the Roxbury Group
  • Mike Duggan, Detroit mayor
  • Dave Egner, president and CEO, the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation
  • Lena Epstein, co-owner, Vesco Oil Corp.
  • Warren Evans, Wayne County executive
  • Lawrence Garcia, chairman, Cesar Chavez Academy
  • Antoine Garibaldi, president, University of Detroit Mercy
  • Dan Gilbert, chairman and founder, Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans
  • Mark Hackel, Macomb County executive
  • Ken Harris, president and CEO, National Business League
  • Joe Hinrichs, executive vice president and president of global operations, Ford
  • Chris Ilitch, president and CEO, Ilitch Holdings
  • Hiram Jackson, CEO, Real Times Media
  • John James Sr., chairman, CEO and founder, James Group
  • Brenda Jones, Detroit City Council president
  • Paul Krutko, president and CEO,  Ann Arbor SPARK
  • Wright Lassiter, president and CEO, Henry Ford Health System
  • Brenda Lawrence, congresswoman, Southfield
  • Tom Lewand Sr., group executive, City of Detroit
  • Tom Lewand Jr., CEO, Shinola
  • Pamela Lewis, director, New Economy Initiative
  • Daniel Loepp, president and CEO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
  • Conrad Mallett Jr., CEO, Detroit Sinai Grace Hospital
  • Dave Meador, vice chairman and chief administrative officer, DTE Energy
  • Jim Nicholson Sr., CEO, PVS Chemicals
  • Jerry Norcia, president and chief operating officer, DTE Energy
  • Cindy Pasky, president and CEO, Strategic Staffing Solutions
  • L. Brooks Patterson, Oakland County executive
  • Roger Penske, founder and chairman, Penske
  • Gary Peters, U.S. senator
  • Sandy Pierce, senior executive vice president, Huntington Bank
  • Rip Rapson, president and CEO,  Kresge Foundation
  • Rick Rogers, president, College for Creative Studies
  • Doug Rothwell, president and CEO, Business Leaders for Michigan
  • Mark Schlissel, president, University of Michigan
  • Lou Anna Simon, president, Michigan State University
  • Matt Simoncini, president and CEO, Lear
  • KB Stallworth, managing director, Black Caucus Foundation
  • Anthony Tedeschi, CEO, Detroit Medical Center
  • Dave Trott, congressman from Birmingham
  • Matt Van Kuiken, chief of staff, U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow
  • Nikolai Vitti, superintendent, Detroit Public Schools Community District
  • Roy Wilson, president, Wayne State University
  • Frederick Zorn, city administrator, Southfield

Contact Frank Witsil: 313-222-5022 or fwitsil@freepress.com.

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