Flint, MI–The Flint & Genesee Group and the University of Michigan-Flint School of Management (SOM) and Entrepreneurs Society announce today a broad-ranging partnership, focused on a series of new initiatives that will impact the community and stimulate economic growth in Genesee County.

“The Flint & Genesee Group is a determined network of community members. Its efforts bring a wide range of valuable resources to individuals and businesses in Genesee County, all for the purpose of supporting our local economy and community members. The Entrepreneurs Society and School of Management are delighted to work with the Flint and Genesee Group to amplify this effort,” said Dr. Michael Witt, PharmD, JD, University of Michigan-Flint, Entrepreneur in Residence and Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Business Law.

By 2040, Genesee County aims to be a top-five community in Michigan based on jobs, talent, livability, and equity. This is outlined in the Group’s vision statement, created with extensive input and partnership with the county’s political and business leaders and community members. To accomplish this, the Group has four divisions: the Flint & Genesee Chamber, Economic Alliance, Education & Talent, and Explore Flint & Genesee.

The University’s partnership with the Chamber kicks off this collaboration with a new video and podcast series, Genesee County Visionaries. This series focuses on the role local business and non-profit leaders play in growing the Greater Flint area.

“This series is a great way to recognize the business leaders in our community and learn more about their visions and what drives them to succeed,” said Andrew Younger, Executive Director of the Flint and Genesee Chamber.

The first episode, launched on March 8, 2022, highlights Dick Skaff, CEO/President of Skaff Furniture Carpet One. A member of the Flint & Genesee Chamber, Skaff is renowned for its catchy family-orientated TV commercials and high-quality furniture and flooring products. Moderated by Witt, the pair discuss the over 100-year-old company’s roots in Michigan and its extensive philanthropic activities in the Flint Community. Skaff has raised over $180,000 through their Save and Share program to support local charities, which include the Food Bank of Eastern MichiganCarriage Town MinistriesWhaley Children’s Center, and Communities First.

“The series will also highlight the many opportunities available for our talented young professionals to grow and have a successful career here in Genesee County,” said Younger.

“The Genesee County Visionaries series is just the beginning,” Witt continued. “In the near future, we want to invite hundreds of UM-Flint students to Flint & Genesee Group career fairs to keep top talent in the region, expand areas for student memberships, coordinate expert UM-Flint faculty presentations for Chamber members, and much more. We see this as a win-win for everyone, especially for our students. They are the future leaders of Flint.”

About the School of Management
The School of Management, established in 1975, is the oldest professional school on the University of Michigan-Flint campus. The school is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. AACSB International accreditation is the hallmark of excellence in management education. The School’s mission is to deliver innovative high-quality programs, intellectual research contributions, high standards of integrity and ethics, and engagement in local and global communities. 
About the Entrepreneurs Society
The Entrepreneurs Society is an official academic student organization at the University of Michigan-Flint School of Management, founded in 2008 by Dr. Michael Witt, PharmD, JD. The Entrepreneurs Society seeks to offer guidance to students to help transform their creative ideas into productive, new ventures.
About the Flint & Genesee Chamber
The Flint & Genesee Chamber is a premier business membership organization unlike most chambers of commerce. Collaboration is one of their core strengths. To affect real and lasting change, partnerships are leveraged with private businesses, education, and governmental agencies at the local, state, and federal levels, as well as grant-making foundations to fuel economic growth and positive change to the region. The Flint & Genesee Chamber is accredited by the United States Chamber of Commerce and for more than 100 years, the Chamber has been working with members to shape communities, build successful businesses, and develop active and effective leadership.

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