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2023 InvestUP CEO Summit

InvestUP held its second UP CEO Summit in Marquette on May 11, 2023. Executives and leaders from 100+ businesses came together with stakeholders to build new working relationships and participate in a day of action-driven discussions. Together, the attendees represented thirteen of the UP’s fifteen counties.

Featured speaker Neel Kashkari, president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, directly engaged the audience, gathering real-time responses about issues of interest to the region. Key findings were that the majority of businesses represented in the room are hiring, and that leaders’ biggest current concern is the lack of available local housing. View Mr. Kashkari’s presentation here.

Other Summit highlights include:

  • TIP Strategies presented the findings of the first-ever U.P. Labor Market Study. Survey results and final findings will be available on the InvestUP website soon.
  • InvestUP’s former board chair and president of Veridea GroupBob Mahaney, and incoming board chair, Karyn Olsson, CEO of the Marketing Department Inc., led a panel discussion on where InvestUP should focus its regional economic development priorities. Suggestions included reliable and robust air service, attendant to alumni recruitment, and changing the regional narrative to focus on opportunities across the U.P.
  • Renowned economic development expert, Birgit Klohs, the recently retired CEO of The Right Place, talked with moderator Steve Arwood, former CEO of the MEDC, about how the Grand Rapids private sector built The Right Place into a nationally recognized economic development organization.
  • Richard Czuba, CEO of polling firm the Glengariff Group, shared findings from its latest social economic survey of UP residents and businesses and compared results with three prior surveys. Findings included: residents say housing is now the region’s top challenge; there is “massive” demand among younger residents for larger homes; business owners and managers are less optimistic about expanding their businesses in the next year; and inflation and costs are now “big” concerns.

InvestUP’s 2024 CEO Summit is slated to take place in Marquette on May 8 and 9, 2024.

As a part of our commitment to the Upper Peninsula, we collaborate with partners to share some of the most compelling stories about business and job growth across the region. Our goal through these stories is to get at the heart of what makes the U.P. unique — and to ensure these stories travel beyond our peninsula and broadly illustrate why the UP is the place to live and work.

If you have an idea for an article, please contact a staff or board member at InvestUP.

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