2014 Agenda

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The 2014 MichAuto Summit will feature an action-packed agenda featuring high level speakers from industry, academia and government.

NOTE: All agenda items are subject to change.


8:00 a.m.

Registration and Networking Breakfast

Sponsored by: Continental Automotive

9:00 a.m.

In Demand: Delivering State-of-the-Art Design

Ralph Gilles, President and CEO, Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC; Senior Vice President, Product Design, Chrysler Group LLC

Interviewed by:
Jeff Vaughn, 
News Anchor, WXYZ-TV Channel 7

There is no product that captivates consumers like a well-designed automobile, and no state contributes as much to automotive design as Michigan. With global sales increasing and consumer preferences evolving, aesthetically appealing products are imperative. This session will explore the resources that make Michigan a hotbed for creating unique state-of-the-art automobiles.

9:55 a.m.

Mobility Moment

Kyle Entsminger, Innovation Manager, Visteon Corporation

Sponsored by: Johnson Controls

10:05 a.m.

Global Insight: Engineering Mobility in Michigan

Andy Ridgway, President, IAV Automotive Engineering, Inc.

Interviewed by:
Dustin Walsh, Automotive Reporter, Crain’s Detroit Business

Michigan is home to world-class academic institutions, tens of thousands of automotive engineers, and several hundred industry technical centers. As the undisputed leader in automotive research and development, Michigan is the one place stakeholders must be to thrive in the industry. This session will highlight a growing, foreign-owned automotive engineering firm, providing global insight on why Michigan is Auto.

10:35 a.m.

Refreshment Break

Sponsored by: ITC Holdings

11:05 a.m.

Highly Skilled Veterans and Autos

Jeff Barnes, Director, Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency

Returning military veterans are a rich talent pool for automotive employers in Michigan. Hear from Michigan’s chief advocate for veterans about how these highly trained heroes bring advanced skill sets to companies that other candidates simply cannot match.

11:15 a.m.

Skilled Trades: Needs, Perceptions and Opportunities

Thomas Baumann, Ph.D., General Manager, Orbitak International, LLC; System Manager, Michigan Advanced Technician Training Program (MAT²)
Brian Gruber, General Plant Manager, Molding Operations, Lacks Trim Systems
Brian McDaniel, Sr. Human Resources Manager, American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc.

Moderator:Laurie Harbour, President and CEO, Harbour Results Inc.

Skilled trades are a critical component of the talent equation as employers compete for highly skilled candidates to fill thousands of high-paying jobs. Yet they encounter misperceptions about the attractive, high-tech career opportunities available throughout the industry. This session will examine ways to attract the next generation of qualified workers to meet the growing demand for skilled trades.

12:00 p.m.

Lunch Keynote: Mark Reuss

Drawing on his engineering and global industry background, GM’s Executive Vice President of Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain, Mark Reuss will help lead the conversation on what needs to be done to keep Detroit and Michigan the epicenter of the global automotive industry. A leader in the renaissance of GM and Detroit, he will address the importance of maintaining, promoting and retaining Michigan’s automotive industry.

Sponsored by: KPMG

1:15 p.m.

Networking Break

2:00 p.m.

The State of Production: Manufacturing and Michigan’s Future

Kenyatta Brame
, Executive Vice President, Cascade Engineering
Ron Hall, Sr., President and CEO, Bridgewater Interiors
Andra Rush, President and CEO, Detroit Manufacturing Systems

Moderator: Birgit Klohs, President and CEO, The Right Place, Inc

Automotive manufacturing is Michigan’s heritage and will continue to be part of its prosperous future. Industry players across the state, large and small, remain committed to manufacturing their automotive products in Michigan. This session will highlight Michigan’s manufacturing strengths and – in light of increasing “reshoring” activity – identify opportunities to grow and compete on the global stage.

2:45 p.m.

The Consumer Experience: Generations X, Y, Z and Beyond

Rod Alberts, Executive Director of the Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA) and North American International Auto Show (NAIAS)
Bob Shuman, Owner, Shuman Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep Ram – Walled Lake

As consumer preferences evolve and demographic trends shift, so too will the experience of buying and driving automobiles. This session will examine the ever-changing consumer experience – from a dealership perspective – and highlight the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) and its impact on Detroit and Michigan.

3:15 p.m.

Mobility Moment

Nigel Francis, Senior Automotive Adviser, State of Michigan; Senior Vice President, Automotive Industry Office, Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Sponsored by: Johnson Controls

3:25 p.m.

The Foundation: Championing Michigan’s Signature Industry

Rick Snyder, Governor, State of Michigan

The automotive industry is driving Michigan’s growing economy, and creating jobs and investment in sectors from manufacturing and engineering to marketing and IT. Across the board, Michigan continues to lead this dynamic global industry, which serves as the foundation for its economic growth. This session will showcase how the state of Michigan champions all things automotive to ensure continued prosperity throughout the 21st century.

Sponsored by: Consumers Energy

3:55 p.m.

The Motor City: Attracting Automotive Jobs and Talent

Mike Duggan, Mayor, City of Detroit

The resurgence of the automotive industry and the recovery of its iconic Motor City share many parallels. The success of Michigan as the global epicenter of the industry and the city’s future are irreversibly intertwined and will be defined largely by the competition for talent. This session will explore the importance of attracting high-tech automotive and manufacturing jobs to Detroit and the innovative initiatives underway to bring the best and brightest to the Motor City.

4:30 p.m.

Networking Reception

Sponsored by: Clark Hill, Dykema, Magna International, TI Automotive

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