January 24, 2020
Big Economic Impact in a Small Town
Title: CEO of Hagerty; Co-Founder and General Partner of Grand Ventures, a venture capital firm investing in innovative emerging technologies for Midwest industries.
His story: Since 2000, he has been the CEO of Hagerty, the world’s largest membership, insurance and media organization for enthusiast vehicle owners. During his tenure, the company has evolved into a leading automotive media company and the hub of the biggest car club in North America, Hagerty Driver’s Club, with more than a million members.
The company’s mission: To save driving for future generations and preserve car culture.
Education: McKeel graduated from Pepperdine University with a degree in English and Philosophy. He earned his master’s degree in theology from Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Seminary. He attended Boston College for graduate work in Philosophy and Classics.
YPO: For 2016-17, McKeel was elected Chairman of the Board of YPO – the world’s largest CEO organization whose members run companies that employ 16 million people and generate $6 trillion in annual revenues.
His philosophy: McKeel is a learner and teacher by nature. He believes relentless self-improvement is important for everyone but especially for leaders. He says: “I have always been impressed the most by those who are constantly pushing the limits of their thinking.”
What he’s passionate about: His family. His company. Helping other people succeed. And using the company’s size and scale to drive positive change in the world. In addition, he loves advising young entrepreneurs who are building a business in pursuit of their dreams.
Media expertise: McKeel is a sought-after authority on the automotive and insurance industries, CEO rituals, and other leadership/success topics. He has appeared in the New York Times, Bloomberg, Forbes, Fortune, Cheddar, Barron’s, ESPN, Velocity, Discovery, Fox & Friends, CNBC, and many other top media outlets.
He lives in: McKeel lives with his wife Soon Hagerty near Traverse City, Michigan, the cherry capital of the world, on a narrow peninsula that juts into Lake Michigan. They have three wonderful daughters, Olivia, Sophia and Ava.
His website: McKeelHagerty.com
February 21, 2020
Joe Comartin was appointed as Canada’s Consul General to Detroit in autumn of 2018, and is responsible for the states of Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. His career spans the private and public sectors, and most recently academia.
Mr. Comartin began his career as a civil litigation lawyer in Ontario where he focused on criminal, family, and personal injury law. He was instrumental in founding the Canadian Autoworkers (CAW) legal services plan and served as managing director for the Windsor-Essex region. He also helped establish co-operative housing and the CAW Child Care Centre.
He entered Canadian federal politics in 2000 serving as a Member of Parliament (MP) for 15 years. Highly regarded by fellow MPs from all parties he was thrice recognized as Canada’s most knowledgeable parliamentarian. In Parliament, he rose to several leadership positions including Opposition House Leader and Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons.
Upon leaving elected office he became a distinguished political scientist in residence at the University of Windsor where he taught ethics and reform in Canadian Parliament and a constitutional law course.
Mr. Comartin and his wife Maureen have three adult children and seven grandchildren.
March 20, 2020
Vaping: A New Market-Created Public Health Crisis…or a Solution to the Market-driven Disaster of Cigarette Smoking? Or Neither? (Or Both?)
An economist, Ken Warner served on the faculty of the University of Michigan School of Public Health for 45 years, including a term as Dean, before retiring in 2017. His research has focused on tobacco policy. He has over 275 professional publications, including 7 books. Ken was the World Bank’s representative to negotiations on the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the world’s first global health treaty. He served as the Senior Scientific Editor of the 25th anniversary Surgeon General’s report on smoking and health. Currently, he is a member of the Food and Drug Administration’s Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee. Ken is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine. Among his awards and honors, he is particularly proud of receiving the Surgeon General’s Medallion from Dr. C. Everett Koop.
Ken received his bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth and his MPhil and PhD from Yale. In Traverse City, in addition to being a member of the Economic Club, he is a member and treasurer of the board of the International Affairs Council and a member of the Munson Healthcare Community and Population Health Committee.
Ken is married to Pat Warner, herself a member of the Economic Club. Before retiring, Pat served as Executive Director of the Children’s and Women’s Hospitals at the University of Michigan. Ken and Pat built their retirement home on the property at the base of East Bay where Pat grew up. They have two sons, two daughters-in-law, and three grandchildren, all of whom live in the Seattle, Washington area.
Ken and Pat love to golf, bike, kayak, and travel. And Ken is an avid poker player.
April 17, 2020
The Economic Case for Serving, Protecting and Restoring the Earth
Jon Terry serves as Director of Community Development and Alumni Relations at the Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies. He is based out of their Great Lakes campus in northern Michigan and works to strengthen relationships between the Institute and its donors, friends, neighbors and more than 4,000 alumni worldwide. The mission of the Au Sable Institute is to inspire and educate people to serve, protect, and restore God’s earth. Jon is an alumnus of the Institute and studied on campus in winter 1991 and summer 1993.
Prior to joining Au Sable, Jon was president of Capitol Youth Strategies LLC in Washington, D.C. His company provided strategic consulting to nonprofit organizations. Jon worked with some of the leading human-service organizations in the country to advance government policies that ensure that young people are prepared for college and career, have access to opportunities and supports, and are able to achieve success in life.
Jon began his career as a policy advisor for U.S. Congressman Fred Upton of Michigan, providing support and legislative analysis on issues related to education, positive youth development, community partnerships, delinquency prevention, and family strengthening. Following his time on Capitol Hill, Jon served for six years as the Director of Federal Government Relations for the YMCA of the USA.
Jon holds a bachelor’s degree from Calvin College and a graduate certificate in Nonprofit Management from George Mason University. He served on the board of the Great Lakes Center for Youth Development from 2010 through 2016 and currently helps lead a youth group for high school students in his hometown of Petoskey, MI.
May 22, 2020
From TC to the World
Mike Carey, is a Founder and the Chief Strategy Officer of ATLAS Space Operations, Inc. A former USAF Major General with 34 years of experience in satellite and space-related operations, Mike shapes ATLAS’s future through strategy development, business planning and market engagement. Gen Carey also led AAC Microtec, North America, Inc. from 2014-2017, culminating in their IPO and recent advances in the market. Experienced with recent commercial space ventures, the Air Force Satellite Control Network, Eastern/Western test ranges, and the Space Test & Training Range, General Carey has the technical and political prowess to maneuver in the ever-expanding space markets. ATLAS Space Operations, Inc. is a state-of-the-art satellite data communications company that utilizes the latest software-based technologies to provide cost-effective solutions. Having moved hardware to the cloud, ATLAS completely bypasses the need for onsite antenna maintenance and associated engineering costs – saving customers time and money. The ATLAS antenna network offers global coverage and data services for a fraction of the price of legacy solutions. For more information, visit www.atlasground.com and follow @AtlasSpace on Twitter.
June 19, 2020
Trillion dollar deficits: How the federal budget symbolizes a broken political system
Paul Stebbins is a Founding Member of FixUS, an initiative of the Campaign to Fix the Debt and is Chairman Emeritus of World Fuel Services. Join us for a conversation with Paul Stebbins about America’s perilous fiscal and political situation. Trillion dollar deficits are set to return within the next year and our already record high national debt will skyrocket over the coming decade. The political environment surrounding our debt and federal budget have come to symbolize the brokenness of our political system.
From 2002 through 2011, Paul served as the Chairman and CEO of World Fuel Services Corporation (NYSE:INT), a Fortune 100 company based in Miami, Florida. He currently serves as a Director of World Fuel, First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR), and Silkroad, founded by cellist Yo Yo Ma. Since 2012, he has been involved with the Campaign to Fix the Debt and is a founding member of their FixUS initiative. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
July 17, 2020
Big Economic Impact in a Small Town
Rod Groleau worked in the plastics industry for over 40 years. His experience and in-depth knowledge of the injection molding process have made him a leader in the industry. He received a Bachelor’s Degree of Engineering from Kettering University (General Motors Institute) and a Master’s Degree from Michigan State University. After a stint as a Plastic Process Engineer with A. C. Spark Plug, he co-founded Control Process, Inc. (CPI) to apply electronic control technology to the injection molding process. While at CPI he developed the industry’s first Process Control System to control the molding process by monitoring plastics variables, he also invented the first commercial Mold Pressure Sensor, and developed a complete product line of specialized controls and information systems for plastic injection molders.
In 1980, Rod joined D-M-E Company as Director of Engineering and Technical Services.
In 1985, Rod began his own training and consulting company, RJG Associates, Inc. where he gained a national reputation for his leadership in the plastics industry.
In 1990, he founded RJG Technologies, Inc. to provide sensors, process monitoring and process control equipment to injection molders. In 1999 the two companies were merged as RJG, Inc., where Rod serves as director.
He currently consults with numerous companies on the application of plastic technologies including processing, process control and optimization, CAD/CAM and new technology implementation techniques. His clients include Ford, IBM, 3M, Dow Chemical, Illinois Tool Works, Hewlett Packard, Bose, General Electric, Lucent Technologies, AT&T and Mueller Industries.
Since founding RJG, Inc. Rod has:
August 28, 2020
TCNew Tech Presents
Jennifer Szunko, Executive Director, TCNewTech
TCNewTech began in May of 2015 when our founder Russ Schindler was building his company Sample Serve and couldn’t find local independent software programmers to help him write a software program. He knew they were out there but mostly working late nights from home without a network platform to connect them with the non-tech people that needed their skills. As his company was beginning to grow he was also looking for a community of investors. He had been attending a group in Ann Arbor called Ann Arbor New Tech and realized creating a similar group in Traverse City could facilitate an ecosystem of like-minded people to eventually lead the area to become a tech hub of the Midwest.
Tim Heger, CTO, CISO, HealthBridge
Tim Heger serves on the board of TCNewTech and 20Fathoms. He has spent the last 18 years focused on emerging technologies and helping global companies scale to meet the demands of a consumer-centric digital ecosystem. Prior to HealthBridge, Tim provided strategy, thought leadership, and executive program management for leading branded manufacturers such as Harley-Davidson, Wilson Sporting Goods, Kohl’s Department Stores, Ugg, ASICS, and Payless Shoe Source. He is a graduate of Central Michigan University. Tim also builds things in his spare time, including log cabins and handcrafted furniture made of pallets.
Ben Marshall, CSP And Licensing Specialist, Blue Chip Consulting Group
Ben Marshall is an IT Strategy consultant and Leader. Coming from San Antonio, Texas, where he began his career at USAA , where he learned how a mature IT department operates, Ben and his family relocated to Traverse City in 2016. Ben uses that knowledge to consult, advise, and mentor executives globally. As an IT leader, Ben has advised many large and small companies on anything from technical and business solutions to procurement strategies. He has also mentored entire sales teams on the process of relationship and challenger selling as the IT Industry reinvents itself through abstraction and consumption. Ben has an Under Graduate Degree in Computer Science and a Master of Science in IT Management. Ben serves on the board of directors for TCNewTech.
Lisa Baker-Lorincz, Consultant at AccessPoint
Experienced Business Consultant with a demonstrated history of working in the human resources industry. Skilled in Sales, Business Development, Marketing Strategy, Social Media, and Human Resources. Lisa is a strong consulting professional with a vested interest supporting entrepreneurs in Northern Michigan as she is a founding member of TCNewTech and serves as the emcee for their monthly events. For the past 7 years, she has worked for AccessPoint providing high-level employment-related services for organizations.
September 25, 2020
Economics and Marketing Changes During and Post Covid-19
Fernando Meza is the CEO of Oneupweb. He’s been privileged to work in media and marketing since 2000 and is an Emma Bowen Foundation alumnus. During his EBF Fellowship, Fernando worked for the marketing services department for ABC Entertainment while completing his degree in Strategic Marketing. After college, he spent six years in Los Angeles working for a creative agency in a variety of roles, ranging from Producer/ Director to Post-Production to Music Supervisor, launching television series such as “Lost,” “Desperate Housewives” and “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” as well as co-branded campaigns between Disney Cable Networks Group Properties and Honda.
In 2009, Fernando moved to New York City; freelancing for cable network groups and creative agencies based in NYC and LA before pursuing a career in advertising. After five years of working with an amazing network of professionals on brands like HBO, Johnny Walker, Smirnoff, Puma and Prudential, Fernando accepted a position at Oneupweb, a digital marketing agency in Traverse City.
His earliest role at Oneupweb centered on research and strategic guidance in securing new business. After six months, Fernando was promoted to Account Executive and led new business development initiatives, securing over $1 million in new business his first year. In 2014, Fernando accepted the offer from the agency’s founder to acquire Oneupweb and become its CEO. Since said transition, he has repositioned an already successful agency into a company relevant to the new challenges that brands face in this digital age.
Throughout his career, Fernando learned that specific themes always triumph: Be Nice, Honest and Authentic; Stories Always Win; Amazing Creative Is Inspired by Amazing Strategy; and Teamwork Makes the Dream Work.
He serves his community as a board member for the Traverse City Chamber of Commerce and Northwest Michigan Health Services, a federally qualified health center.
October 23, 2020
Barry Rabe is the J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Professor of Public Policy in the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan, where he directs the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy. Barry is a political scientist trained at the University of Chicago who studies climate, environmental, and energy policy in federal systems of government. He is a non-resident senior fellow in governance studies at the Brookings Institution and is an elected fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.
Barry is the recipient of four major research awards from the American Political Science Association, including the 2017 Martha Derthick Award for authoring a book with enduring impact in the fields of federalism and intergovernmental relations (STATEHOUSE AND GREENHOUSE, Brookings Institution Press, 2004). His most recent book is CAN WE PRICE CARBON?, published in 2018 by MIT Press. He is currently completing a book about the ability of sub-federal governments that produce fossil fuels to use extraction taxes and sovereign wealth funds to address resource curse challenges.