The DTE Energy Foundation awarded grants to Michigan-based organizations to spur economic development and job creation across the state. Grant recipients include the Ann Arbor Spark Foundation, Detroit Economic Growth Association, Detroit Regional Partnership, Michigan Economic Development Foundation, Northern Lakes Economic Alliance, The Right Place Foundation and Venture North Funding and Development. This support will better position each organization to meet the unique needs of their regions, develop programs and initiatives that support the economy and bolster job creation.

“The economic strain our state has experienced over the past year has tremendously impacted so many Michiganders,” said Lynette Dowler, president, DTE Foundation. “Our partners will use these grants to improve the economic wellbeing and quality of life for communities by building local wealth, diversifying the economy, and creating and retaining jobs. Each of these organizations work hand in glove with their communities to meet the direct economic needs in their regions, and this support will help them continue to create a stronger more resilient Michigan.”

The DTE Foundation is among the state’s largest foundations committed to Michigan-focused giving, supporting initiatives focused on arts and culture, community transformation, economic progress, education and employment, environment and human needs. Its goal is to inspire and encourage engagement in the communities to build productive and safe neighborhoods for families to raise their children, conduct local business and have access to necessary services.

Communities are continuing to adjust to the ongoing challenges brought on by the pandemic, making this statewide surge of economic development more important than ever.

“We share the DTE Energy Foundation’s priorities of creating jobs for all, increasing diversity, equity and inclusion, and attracting investment to our communities,” said Maureen Donohue Krauss, president and CEO of the Detroit Regional Partnership. “The DTE Energy Foundation’s support of economic development efforts are having a lasting impact across Michigan. They have been instrumental since the inception of the Detroit Regional Partnership and continue to be a phenomenal partner as we work to build a more prosperous region and state.”

The grant recipients – and communities – will use their passion and expertise to ensure the DTE Foundation’s commitment has maximum positive impact:

  • Ann Arbor Spark Foundation – $200,000 grant
    • This grant will be used for economic development across Washtenaw County, helping companies prosper and succeed, acquiring and engaging talent and marketing the region.
  • Detroit Economic Growth Association – $700,000 grant
    • This grant will support the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation and Detroit Means Business as they seek to drive inclusive economic development in Detroit. These initiatives aim to create new jobs, secure investment and build an economy where everyone can participate and find success.
  • Detroit Regional Partnership – $2,000,000 grant
    • The Detroit Regional Partnership plans to use this grant to support metric-driven business development and marketing that tells the story of the region and showcases its assets to companies looking to locate, invest, and create jobs in the 11-counties it serves, as well as ultimately support a transition into the Detroit community.
  • Michigan Economic Development Foundation – $100,000 grant
    • This grant will help the Michigan Economic Development Foundation (MEDF) in its mission to serve as a promoter and catalyst for economic growth in Michigan. Its core function is its support of the Governor and state’s top economic development leaders as they make a case for the many opportunities available here in Michigan. The MEDF serves to help strengthen and fund economic development efforts in Michigan that create private investments and increase jobs and wages. The support of partners, including the DTE Energy Foundation, has been invaluable in efforts to market Michigan as a great place to do business and take vacations.
  • Northern Lakes Economic Alliance (NLEA) – $100,000 grant
    • This grant will be used for general operations to support multiple areas of programing, a college internship program, and business model competitions. This support helps to provide day-to-day expertise to companies and communities, which is critical for attracting and retaining work force and community revitalization efforts. With the backing of the DTE Foundation and others, the board of directors and staff can implement a robust economic development work plan throughout Antrim, Charlevoix and Cheboygan counties in Northern Michigan.
  • The Right Place Foundation – $100,000 grant
    • This support will be used to advance the mission of The Right Place, Inc., Greater Grand Rapids’ leading economic development organization. Staffed by a skilled team of economic development and business professionals, The Right Place drives sustainable economic growth and shared prosperity for all in the region through the development and implementation of comprehensive strategies to retain, expand, and attract businesses.
  • Venture North Funding and Development – $120,000 grant
    • This grant will be used for general operations to provide business support services to underserved entrepreneurs and small businesses through one-on-one business consultation and targeted marketing and outreach over the next two years. The funds will enable Venture North to increase outreach to underserved populations including business owners who are minorities, low-income, women and veterans. The result will be additional loan capital deployed to these underserved entrepreneurs and small business throughout the 10-county Northwest Michigan region.