Liz Boone has nearly 30 years of marketing and advertising experience. She's held numerous executive level positions at advertising agencies and publishers in Chicago, Southern California, San Francisco, NY and Detroit.

Liz moved back to Detroit in 2010 to take a position with General Motors as the Director of Advertising Strategy for US brands and was then promoted to Global Director, Digital and Social Engagements.  Liz is currently the Group Account Director, for Audi of America, at Latcha and Associates.

Since moving back to Detroit in 2010, Liz has been an active member of the community. Starting in 2011, she has been a board member and trustee of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. She also serves on the advisory board of Culture Lab Detroit. She was recognized by Automotive News as one of its 100 leading women in Automotive. In 2012, with her partner Toby Barlow, Liz founded a successful design store, Nora Detroit, signaling her commitment to Detroit and her investment in the success of the city and its community.



Kate Bordine is a graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design with a Masters in Design Management and a BFA from Miami University. She is a co-founder and Creative Director of Ponyride, where she develops platforms for creative and social entrepreneurs to scale by providing affordable studio space. She focuses on building organizational frameworks that foster creative thinking and facilitates collaboration. She is also a local partner in Our/Detroit and works on marketing and design. She is currently on board of Techtown and Detroit SOUP.



Melissa Butler, is a Detroit native who has skillfully and strategically launched a start-up beauty brand, The Lip Bar, into a nationwide phenomenon. Melissa obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Finance from Florida A & M University before going on to work on Wall Street as a licensed stock broker. Her journey from stocks and bonds to beauty is one that she describes as natural, not because she loved makeup, but because she was frustrated with the industry and therefore created a solution. Melissa wasn’t willing to accept cosmetics filled with chemicals because she believes beauty doesn’t have to compromise health. She also hated traditional beauty campaigns and their linear approach of beauty. “Everyone deserves to have representation. Without it, we are left seeking validation” she says. It was her belief in health and inclusion that lead her to make lipstick in her kitchen and develop the vegan line, The Lip Bar. Her goal is to empower women everywhere of all ages, races and body types to be confident in their own skin by challenging traditional beauty standards through imagery, ingredients and affordable pricing.

Since launch, Melissa has taken The Lip Bar on Shark Tank, The Bethenny Show and it has graced the pages of Essence, Ebony and Cosmopolitan Magazines. The Lip Bar is headquartered in Detroit and can be found on TheLipBar.com as well as Target.com. And while Melissa has already accomplished so much, she continues to take the beauty world by storm through innovation, integrity and passion.



Phillip Cooley and his partners started Slows Bar B Q in 2005. Since opening it has expanded into Ford Field(Detroit Lions,etc.), Slows To Go(catering, carryout and commissary) and a new location in Grand Rapids. They are currently constructing another location inPontiac (2016). In 2014 Cooley and another group of partners opened Gold Cash Gold(farm to table restaurant) in an abandoned pawn shop of the same name. He works with his family at O’Connor Development as a general contractor. Cooley is a co-founder of Ponyride(2012) He sits on many board of directors and advisory boards(Empowerment Plan, Detroit SOUP, Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice, Knight Foundation Detroit, etc.). Cooley is an adjunct professor at Lawrence Technological University where he co-teaches a studio course with university and Detroit Public High School students through Ponyride.



Karla Henderson was appointed as Director of the Building, Safety, Engineering and Environmental Department by Mayor Dave Bing in July 2009 and served in the administration for four years. In August 2010, she was appointed Group Executive of Planning and Facilities where she brought over 17 years of increasingly responsible management experience in the administration of public resources and management. Her responsibilities included overseeing of the Building, Safety, Engineering and Environmental Department; the Detroit Building Authority; the Department of Administrative Hearings; the Planning and Development Department; the Mayor’s Detroit Works Short-Term Neighborhood Intervention project; and the Bing Administration. She also served as the Chairperson to the City of Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, the City of Detroit Local Development Finance Authority, and as Mayor Bing’s designee to the Detroit Building Authority Board of Commissioners. She is an Urban Land Institute Rose Center Fellow for 2010-2011. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Public Service Resource Management from the Michigan State University and resides in Detroit. She is now the Director of Strategic Planning and Facility Management at Wayne County, Michigan.



Marc Schwartz is an activist, collector and patron of the arts. Born and raised in Detroit, he serves as Chairman of the Collections Committee at the Detroit Institute of Arts; Art Detroit Now, an arts advocacy initiative comprised of 90 arts organizations; DLECTRICITY, a nighttime festival of art + light; and Detroit Made, a design incubator. He also serves on the Advisory Council or Board of Directors of CCS Galleries, Dashboard, Detroit Advisory Council of the Knight Foundation, Detroit Creative Corridor Center, Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit Soup, Signal Return and Techtown.



For the last 4 years Jamie was the Managing Director of Investments at Mission Throttle.  He oversaw all aspects of investing and led select advisory engagements with Detroit social enterprises.

He completed a dual master’s degree at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and School of Natural Resources and Environment, graduating with high distinction. During his time there he was one of the Directors of the UM Social Venture Fund, the first student led social venture fund in the country, and directed the 2010 Net Impact National Conference.

Previously, Jamieco-founded the Icon Group, a multi-disciplinary hospitality company that designed, developed and operated nightlife, restaurant and event spaces around the country. One of the concepts, La Condesa, received a James Beard nomination for best new restaurant in the country and was voted best restaurant in Austin.

He received a B.A. in Government and Environmental Policy from Bowdoin College and spent his early career working on public lands policy for the Idaho Conservation League.



John Van Camp is the President and CEO of Southwest Solutions, based in southwest Detroit. Under John’s leadership, Southwest Solutions has become nationally acclaimed for its comprehensive and innovative neighborhood revitalization work. Collaborating with many partners, the agency integrates human services, community and economic development, and resident engagement programs to serve more than 25,000 a year and help build a healthier and stronger community. John joined Southwest Solutions in 1973, a year after it was founded, when it was a small community metal health agency with a staff of ten. In 1981, he became its executive director and helped evolve the company into a family of tax exempt and taxable entities, employing more than 320 persons.



Eric C. Williams directs the Program for Entrepreneurship and Business Law. He previously worked in New York in private practice, as a litigation associate with Winston & Strawn,  legal consultant at Labaton Sucharow LLP, as a business litigation associate at Nixon Peabody LLP, and as a managing partner in the Law Office of Coleman and Williams. He also gained experience in the nonprofit sector as director of development at the Health and Welfare Council of Long Island and as senior program developer at Focus: HOPE in Detroit.  Williams earned a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the University of Michigan, a master of philosophy in international relations from Magdalene College at Cambridge University and a juris doctor from Columbia University School of Law.

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From the Pop Icon “Usher” to Ford Motor Company Fund, Shawn’s entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to innovation has brought value to “A” list celebrities and Fortune 500 companies alike. After starting his career in the traditional nonprofit sector with the YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee, Shawn found his passion as a Social Entrepreneur and in 1998 launched SWI Consulting Inc., a full service philanthropic consulting firm in Atlanta, Ga. In his role as President and CEO, Shawn spearheaded the launch of more than a dozen charitable non-profit organizations for high net-worth individuals. In 2004, Shawn partnered with 8-time Grammy Winning Artist, Usher Raymond IV to re-launch the New Look Foundation. During his decade long tenure as President and CEO, New Look trained & certified 21,000 youth leaders across 4 continents and 9 countries. In June 2014 Shawn joined Ford Motor Company Fund and has over-all responsibility for Southeastern Michigan in addition to the Asian and Middle-Eastern communities.



Kaija Wuollet is the founding partner at Laavu, a Detroit - based architectural design studio - built on a city-building vision, with an emphasis on careful craftsmanship, and the belief that thoughtful design can improve everyday life. As a Finnish American, she has a strong connection to nature and craft, shaping her fascination in the design and build of objects, furniture and details. As an urbanist and entrepreneur at heart, Kaija has a deep interest in sustainable growth in cities, always searching to understand how people interact in spaces at a range of scales. Sustainable business models paired with thoughtful design serves as the foundation for each project.