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Michigan governor, university presidents and biz leaders tout state's strengths in NYC

November 7, 2013

Michigan took its A-team of political and corporate power brokers to the Big Apple on Thursday to make a an aggressive sales pitch to some skeptical audiences. The visitors proclaimed that Michigan is now a state on the mend, a great place to invest and work and visit. Gov. Rick Snyder led the pitch team, flanked by Bill Ford, Chris Ilitch and DTE Energy CEO Gerry Anderson, backed by university presidents M. Roy Wilson of Wayne State and Lou Anna Simon of Michigan State. The Michigan group faced pointed questions on topics ranging from its stubborn image problem to the impact of becoming a right-to-work state, to why its electric power costs to commercial customers are higher than southern states. An evening reception and dinner was to follow for successful New York businesspeople who are alumni of Michigan universities. The idea, which took the form of the Michigan Ambassadors program launched in 2011 by Business Leaders for Michigan, is to engage far-flung alumni to invest in, move back to, or talk up the state to their peers at other companies.