On June 20th, Troy Chamber and members met for a CEO Luncheon hosted by the Hilton Garden Inn located in Troy. Guest speaker Tonya Allen, CEO and President of The Skillman Foundation, delivered an engaging presentation discussing the complexities of education reform.

In her current role, Allen aligns the complexities of education reform, urban revitalization, and public policy to improve the well-being of Detroit’s and the nation’s children. Allen has been instrumental in many successful philanthropic, government and community initiatives.

Key topics Allen touched on during the CEO Luncheon included the importance of creating equal opportunities for children from all socio-economic backgrounds. And how Detroit’s future as a city, will be determined by how successful the community establishes a merging and partnership from those with different ideologies.

Allen divides those seeking to reestablish the greater Detroit area as a thriving community, into two groups; the Fixers and the Builders. Describing them both as valuable and needed ideologies to further Detroit’s growth.  The Builders holding the belief that we can re-build our current Detroit structures and find inspiration through looking back on the city’s heyday. The Fixers are made up primarily of the newer generations entering our workforce and community. Having not experienced Detroit’s past prime, they are future orientated in the ideas and methods they propose.

The city of Detroit is seeing a resurgence of both economy and community. To nurture this growth, it is the time for the Builders and Fixers to embrace their common goal. As Allen described, “Now is the time to flex our civic muscles.”