COVID-19 Update: StartupNation to Host Cybersecurity Webinar Oct. 20, Rocket Community Fund Offers Grants for Past Downtown Detroit Market Vendors, and More

Here is a roundup of the latest news concerning the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to announcements from local, state, and federal governments, as well as international channels. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
map of Michigan coronavirus cases
Courtesy of Bridge, as of Oct. 15

Here is a roundup of the latest news concerning the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to announcements from local, state, and federal governments, as well as international channels. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

StartupNation, Dell Technologies, McAfee Present Cybersecurity Webinar
StartupNation in Birmingham, in conjunction with Dell Technologies and McAfee, is hosting a free cybersecurity webinar for startups and small businesses on Tuesday, Oct. 20 at 2 p.m.

The webinar is designed to provide attendees with an understanding of where to start in developing a security package.

“We are thrilled to partner with Dell Technologies once again to bring educational opportunities to the entrepreneurs and small business owners of the metro Detroit area and beyond,” says Jeff Sloan, founder and CEO of StartupNation. “While the pandemic has certainly changed how we’re providing these educational experiences, one thing hasn’t changed — we’re more committed than ever to educating and fostering entrepreneurship, and we are grateful to our partners at Dell Technologies for aiding in this experience.”

Webinar attendees will learn current trends and the security threat landscape, how COVID-19 has changed online security, why security should matter to startups, where to start with your business’s security measures, and more.

The webinar will feature Dell Technologies executives be Megan Wright, strategic partnership account executive, and Matthew Papendorf, North America OEM brand manager for Dell Security.

“Dell Technologies is focused on helping support Detroit entrepreneurs and startups find the right technology for their growing needs,” says Wright. “Through our partnership with StartupNation, we have found the best platform to do so.”

All attendees will be automatically registered to win a Dell XPS Work from Anywhere Bundle, valued at more than $3,000.

To register, visit here.

Rocket Community Fund Offers Grants for Past Downtown Detroit Market Vendors
The Rocket Community Fund, formerly the Quicken Loans Community Fund, has introduced a small business grant that will be made available for past downtown Detroit market vendors.

All vendors that remained in good standing and stayed for the entirety of their season, will be eligible for a $5,000 grant. The grant is intended to give these entrepreneurs a boost before the holiday season.

Over the past several years, dozens of vendors have had the opportunity to experience downtown Detroit’s retail scene as a part of the Downtown Detroit Market program. The majority of these entrepreneurs continue to service the metro Detroit area and currently seven of those businesses are now successful first-time brick and mortar retailers in Detroit.

Grant requirements:

  • Must be considered in good standing with the Downtown Detroit Market program.
  • The grant must go toward business-related expenses.
  • The grantee will provide a report on how they chose to distributed their allocated funds in 30 days.
  • Vendors who have received previous funding support from the Rock Family of Companies (e.g. through participation in Detroit Demo Day) are not eligible.
  • Business must have been a full-time vendor who participated in the outdoor series of the Downtown Detroit Markets.

Due to the small capacity of the traditional Downtown Detroit Market glass huts, the Rocket Community Fund and Bedrock will forgo the Downtown Detroit Markets this season. This decision was made with the community’s health and safety at the top of the mind.

For more information, contact Jaclyn Ermoyan at

Stanadyne Opens New Research and Customer Service Center in Southfield
Global fuel and air management systems supplier Stanadyne has opened a new Research and Customer Service Center in Southfield.

The new 5,000-square-foot facility will provide the company’s customers with easier collaboration, quicker response time, and improved access to their customized engineering technology solutions. It will initially house program management, engineering, and sales activities, with plans for 35 employees.

“The proximity to our customer base will afford the highest level of response, quality, and customer support, connecting us on a whole new level,” says Brad Stroia, chief technical officer at Stanadyne. “The new Detroit Center increases our industry presence and allows us access to some of the most talented automotive R&D and engineering minds in the world to accelerate our product timeline from system innovation to market.”

SBAM Creates Toolkit to Help Small Businesses Navigate Remote Work
The Small Business Association of Michigan in Lansing has created a new guide aimed to help small businesses navigate and thrive with employees working remotely.

“The pandemic has created many unprecedented circumstances for small businesses and that includes the transition to a predominately remote workforce for many companies,” says Brian Calley, president of the SBAM. “Sorting out these arrangements can sometimes be complicated, so we created this resource to help businesses set up policies and arrangements that will help both the business and the employee thrive during these times.”

The Small Business Owner’s Guide to Remote Work was created in partnership with the American Society of Employers and NuWave Technology Partners.

The guide can be downloaded here.

Folktellers, Momentum Books Win Bronze Medal for “Cave in the Rock”
Folktellers of Detroit and Momentum Books of Troy have been honored with a Bronze Medal for Excellence in Pre-Teen Fantasy Fiction category of the Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards for “Cave in the Rock,” the second installment of the publishers’ Guidebook series.

The first book, “Excerpts from an Unknown Guidebook” ranks as one of the top fantasy series for young readers in 2020.

“We are very excited to receive this award,” says author Josef Bastian. “This type of recognition moves us further along in our journey to resurrect regional folk tales and legends and share the power of stories across the globe. This wonderful award is proof-positive that we are on to something very special.”

Moonbeam Award winners will be honored at a virtual award ceremony next month as part of the annual Traverse City Children’s Book Festival.

“With all the distractions of cell phones and other electronic gadgets, kids need a reason to fall in love with books,” says Jim Barnes, director of the awards program. “Our contest and book festival are designed to do just that, bringing authors and children together to celebrate the magic of books and reading.”

WJR Cares Benefits Detroit Goodfellows ‘Day of Giving’
The Old Newsboys’ Goodfellow Fund of Detroit is being featured for a special Day of Giving all-day today during the on-air WJR Cares event, sponsored by the DTE Energy Foundation.

WJR News Talk 760 is hosting a roundtable and interviews throughout the day with people related to the Detroit Goodfellows organization, including former Goodfellow package recipients and long-term supporters.

“We are honored to be featured for WJR Cares and appreciate the support of WJR and DTE Energy Foundation for this opportunity to help us continue to deliver our mission of ‘No Kiddie without a Christmas’ to the children of Detroit and other communities we serve,” says Daran Carey, president of Detroit Goodfellows. “Through the featured interviews, we hope more people learn about our organization, the work we do, and ways they can help.”

WJR is a longtime supporter of Detroit Goodfellows and its annual Tribute Breakfast, typically held each fall in downtown Detroit as its major fundraising event with leaders of Detroit’s political and business community attending. The organization is looking forward to a return of its in-person Tribute Breakfast XXXI in 2021.

The Detroit Goodfellows’ 2020 fundraising goal of $1 million will help provide 30,000 holiday gift packages containing sweatpants, sweatshirts, socks, underwear, winter hats and gloves, a dental kit, toys, books, games, school supplies, and more for needy children in Detroit, Highland Park, Harper Woods, River Rouge, Hamtramck, and Ecorse. Additionally, girls ages four through nine receive a hand-dressed doll created by a community volunteer of the doll dresser program which was created in 1924.

Families that wish to sign up for the Detroit Goodfellows Christmas gift package program for this year can do so here through Oct. 30.

North Star Reach Offers Glow & Light Show Drive-Thru and Trick-or-treating
North Star Reach Camp in Pinckney is presenting its Halloween Glow & Light Show Drive-Thru of illuminated displays and singing jack o’lanterns. The family-friendly event also will feature trick-or-treating for the kids. Costumes are encouraged.

The event, which costs $25 per car, will take place on Fridays Oct. 23 and Oct. 30 and Saturday Oct. 31 from 7-9 p.m., and on Sunday, Nov. 1 from 6-8 p.m.

All proceeds will benefit North Star Reach, 1200 University Camp Dr. in Pinckney. Tickets must be purchased in advance here. There will be 20 spots open per 30 minutes.

Macy’s to Conduct National Hiring Event Oct. 22
Macy’s is conducting a National Holiday Hiring event from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22, to fill seasonal positions at stores, call centers, and distribution and fulfillment centers, including more than 700 opportunities in Michigan.

A variety of opportunities are available with competitive pay, access to flexible scheduling, bilingual work environment, merchandise discount, and the opportunity to earn additional bonuses.

Prior to the event, candidates are encouraged to submit applications here to receive a response via email. Macy’s will conduct all interviews for in-store opportunities by phone.

Beaumont’s New Psychiatry Residency Program Granted Accreditation
Beaumont Health’s new Psychiatry Residency program has been granted accreditation by the American College of Graduate Medical Education.

“Given all the fears, anxieties, and uncertainties created by the pandemic, now it’s more important than ever to train more psychiatrists and expand our mental health programs and services to meet the growing need across Michigan,” says John Fox, president and CEO of Beaumont Health. “This is a key part of our expanded mental health strategy to better serve our communities.”

Dr. Jeffrey Guina, program director for the Psychiatry Residency, and his team are now seeking applicants for the inaugural class which will begin in July 2021.

“Our newly accredited residency program is a key part of Beaumont’s overall mental health program, which also includes a new, dedicated 150-bed hospital which will open in Dearborn later in 2021,” says Carolyn Wilson, COO of Beaumont Health.

The mental health hospital, currently under construction, will be Beaumont’s ninth hospital. The facility will encompass more than 100,000-square-feet and will double Beaumont Health’s current capacity for inpatient mental health care.

In Related News: Beaumont is participating in a medication take-back event Oct. 23-24. The health organization and local law enforcement agencies are encouraging people to drop off unused or expired prescribed medications Oct. 23 at Beaumont hospitals in Dearborn, Taylor, Trenton, and Wayne, and on Oct. 24 at the Sterling Heights Medical Park across from Beaumont Hospital, Troy.

The take-back event includes over-the-counter medications and other drugs. No questions asked. Organizers prefer pills be in a plastic baggie. The four hospital sites will only accept pills. The Sterling Heights Medical Park site also will accept medical sharps.

Dykema to Host M&A Market Analysis Webinar
Detroit’s Dykema is hosting its annual “State of the M&A Market” analysis on Tuesday, Oct. 27, from 5-6 p.m.

Attendees will hear from Ted Leh, managing director in the Investment Strategy Group at Goldman Sachs, who will share his perspectives on the 2021 market and M&A outlook. There will also be a question-and-answer session at the end of the event.

To register, visit here.

Ford Airport in Grand Rapids Unveils Statue of Namesake Gerald Ford
The Gerald R. Ford International Airport Thursday unveiled a statue of its namesake as part of the Grand Rapids Community Legends Project to honor the individuals who shaped the culture of and helped build West Michigan. The Ford Airport also dedicated a new Presidential Gateway Plaza, which will serve as home to the statue and provide a welcome to travelers from all over the world.

The unveiling of the statue was led by the family of Ambassador Peter and Joan Secchia, who have funded the Community Legends Project to recognize influential figures throughout the history of Grand Rapids and inspire others with their stories.

“This statue holds a special place in our family members’ hearts,” says Charlie Secchia, chair of the Community Legends Committee. “Not only was President Ford an adept and insightful leader in a tumultuous time, he was Grand Rapids’ favorite son and someone my parents are honored to have called a friend. We could not be prouder to call him our own and to dedicate this memorial as part of the Community Legends Project.”

The bronze statue is of Ford in a seated position, one arm lifted for embrace. A curved sandstone-inspired seating element complements the statue, creating a place for visitors to sit with the statue while overlooking a global map etched into the concrete. The American and Michigan flags rise from West Michigan as a tribute to Ford’s love for and commitment to his country and home state.

Artist J. Brett Grill started working on the project in the summer of 2019.

Lawrence Tech Announces Advanced Manufacturing Pitch Contest Winners
Three startup advanced manufacturing companies have earned $35,000 in prizes in a virtual pitch contest sponsored by the Centrepolis Accelerator at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield, Pure Michigan Business Connect, and the Jackson business accelerator Lean Rocket Lab.

The mission of the contest was to attract startups from around the world that are developing the next generation of manufacturing technologies and connect them with Michigan’s advanced manufacturing ecosystem.

The winners in each category were:

Best Cleantech Company: Archimedes of Ann Arbor, manufacturers of the HALO hand sanitizer using ultraviolet light. The $10,000 award was sponsored by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, and the Centrepolis Accelerator, the hardware business accelerator at LTU, where Archimedes is a client. Archimedes also won the $5,000 People’s Choice Award of Ann Arbor sponsored by Jaffe Law.

Best Industry 4.0 Company: S3D Precision Dispensing Inc. in Ann Arbor, developers of an automated micro-dispensing system, based on research at the University of Michigan. The $10,000 award was sponsored by Automation Alley, the Troy-based technology pro-motion organization.

Best Manufacturing Technology Company: Invisible AI of San Francisco, Calif., developers of a computer vision system that works with line operators in manufacturing. The $10,000 award was sponsored by the Hurst Foundation and Lean Rocket Lab.

The winning startups will use the prize money for production and development, including operational setup and user interface and user experience design assistance.

To view the complete list of participants, visit here.

Cancer Society’s Night of Discovery to Honor Cancer Fight Leaders
The American Cancer Society will host the Virtual Night of Discovery led by co-chairs Karen and Matt Cullen (executive chairman of JACK Entertainment) and Mary and Tom Shafer (president and COO of TCF Bank) on Nov. 12.

Starting at 7 p.m., the virtual event will be led by Kimberly Gill and Devin Scillian from WDIV, Local 4, and will feature live entertainment, a silent auction, and a best dressed competition. The event also will honor four leaders in the fight against cancer, including:

  • Tom Izzo, Michigan State University basketball coach.
  • Chevrolet, an ACS corporate partner since 2011.
  • Carol Hutchins, University of Michigan softball coach.
  • Ken and Kristen Lingenfelter.

The Night of Discovery will support the American Cancer Society’s investment in cancer research, patient services, and cancer prevention efforts, both locally and across the nation. During the pandemic, ACS has provided a free place to stay for frontline healthcare workers at Hope Lodge facilities across the country, provided information and resources to cancer patients to help navigate COVID-19, and fought for policies that will help ease the increased burden created by the pandemic for cancer patients.

For more information about Night of Discovery and corporate sponsorship opportunities, call

248-663-3401 or visit here.

Nuveen Leads Series B Financing Round for Advanced Battery Concepts
New York-based global investment manager Nuveen has led a Series B growth equity round in Advanced Battery Concepts in Clare (north of Mount Pleasant in mid-Michigan). ABC develops and licenses technology related to bipolar lead-acid battery architecture.

The investment was the first from the Nuveen Global Impact Fund, a private equity vehicle formed earlier this year to make direct investments globally in high growth companies that seek to address climate change and contribute to inclusive growth.

“If we are to tackle global sustainability challenges like climate change, we need to learn to live within our means,” said David Haddad, co-head of private impact investing at Nuveen. “ABC’s technology improves the performance, cost, and resource intensity of lead-acid batteries while preserving full recyclability. We believe high-performing lead-acid batteries will play an important role as electrification continues globally.”

Edward Shaffer, founder and CEO of Advanced Battery Concepts, says, “We are delighted to have gained support from a global investor like Nuveen. Its impact expertise and network will be critical for our next stage of growth, helping us build relationships in new markets and geographies. We look forward to working together to support the world’s energy storage needs.”

Treetops Resort Donates $1M to Local Charities and Through Pepsi Fall Invitational
By the end of 2020, Treetops Resort in Gaylord will have donated more than $1 million to local Otsego County charities through the Pepsi Fall Invitational.

The event which hosts 432 participants over three days and sells out well over two months in advance implemented special COVID-19 precautions this year.

“This event is so meaningful to our resort, the participants, and most importantly the charities that we support, so I wanted to do everything in my power to be able to safely host the event,” says Kevin McKinley, assistant general manager at Treetops. “With staggered shotgun times, to-go meals and the use of our expansive property, we were able to successfully reduce the chance for this large field to gather in one place.”

Friendship Circle Celebrates Newly Purchased Dakota Bread Co. with Ribbon Cutting
Friendship Circle nonprofit, which has purchased the Dakota Bread Co., will conduct a ribbon cutting ceremony at the bakery (6879 Orchard Lake Rd. in West Bloomfield Township) on Oct. 20 at 11 a.m., including a small group of government officials and Friendship Circle staff and supporters.

Friendship Circle’s goal is to provide every individual with special needs the support, friendship, and inclusion they deserve. Dakota Bread Co. is known for its challah bread. Under the Friendship Circle’s ownership, the bakery will be part of the nonprofit’s training program for special needs adults.