Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
Cranbrook House to Exhibit Japanese Floral Arrangements Oct. 7
Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research in Bloomfield Hills, in partnership with Cranbrook House and Gardens Auxiliary and Ikebana International Detroit Chapter 85, will open Ikebana / 生け花: The Art of Japanese Floral Arrangement at Cranbrook House starting Oct. 7.
The exhibit will feature more than 30 arrangements by some of Michigan’s most respected floral artists, ikebana demonstrations, and tours of both the Cranbrook Japanese Garden and Cranbrook House.
“The Cranbrook Japanese Garden is a place of beauty and inspiration—one of Cranbrook’s hidden gems,” says Gregory Wittkopp, director of the Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research. “As we work with the legendary designer Sadafumi Uchiyama to rejuvenate this 107-year-old cultural landscape, we want to make sure it not only is a place for personal reflection and discovery but also a space to make connections with the people and traditions of Japan.
“Working with our colleagues at Cranbrook House and Gardens Auxiliary, we are honored to be able to collaborate on the Ikebana exhibition with the artists of Ikebana International Detroit Chapter 85, and share their centuries-old, living art form with audiences throughout the region.”
Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arranging, has been translated as “living flowers” or “giving life to flowers,” and is unique from other approaches to flower arrangement. In ikebana, asymmetry and the use of empty space are essential features of the overall composition. Originating in the seventh century when floral offerings were made at altars, ikebana reached its first zenith in the 16th century under the influence of Buddhist tea masters. There now are more than 1,000 different types of schools of ikebana throughout the world.
The exhibition will open with a preview and wine reception Oct. 7 from 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. The preview will feature music performed by Harumi Omitsu on a traditional koto, the national instrument of Japan. Admission to the preview is $125 for one ticket and $225 for two tickets. Preview admission includes a $50 tax-deductible donation benefitting Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research and Cranbrook House & Gardens Auxiliary, as well as admission to the exhibition events on Saturday and Sunday. Space is limited and advance registration is required for the preview here.
Following the preview, Ikebana will be open from noon-5 p.m. Oct. 8-9. Guests can view the exhibition and enjoy informal tours of Cranbrook House, led by Cranbrook House and Gardens Auxiliary’s volunteer docents. At select times on Saturday and Sunday, visitors will have the opportunity to watch ikebana demonstrations and ask questions about the art, and the chance to tour the Japanese Garden. Admission on Saturday and Sunday is $25 for adults and seniors, and $10 for full-time students with ID. Advance registration here is encouraged.
For more information, visit center.cranbrook.edu.
Atlas Space Operations Wins Contract for Space Domain Awareness
Atlas Space Operations in Traverse City has received a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II award to develop its space domain awareness (SDA) capabilities. This effort will use Atlas software and hardware to increase the company’s ability to conduct passive RF observations of on-orbit assets.
To deliver on the milestones of the SBIR, Atlas leverages machine-to-machine connectivity that makes creative use of unused antenna time within its global ground network. By exploiting time on antennas that would otherwise go unused, Atlas will listen for assets in the path of a given antenna.
This functionality has clear defense and intelligence applications, but also can be used following a satellite launch by listening for new assets. In addition, the SDA network will provide a much-needed capability to track asset orbits and deconflict possible collisions in an increasingly populated orbit environment.
“Atlas’ work in the space domain awareness arena is closely aligned with our company goals as well as public and private sector visions for the future,” says Mike Carey, co-founder and newly appointed COO of Atlas. “The SDA initiative aligns well with our emphasis on software applications to address challenges where hardware alone falls short. Our team is proud to provide these critical capabilities for the rest of the space community, and we expect SDA services to grow in popularity shortly.”
Grants Awarded to 49 Small Michigan Manufacturers to help adopt Industry 4.0
Forty-nine small manufacturers around Michigan have been awarded a total of $1.15 million to help them adopt Industry 4.0 technologies, according to the Michigan Economic Development Corp. The funds are from the second and third rounds of awards as part of the $3 million Industry 4.0 Technology Implementation Grant program.
“Michigan is the advanced manufacturing capital of the world, and these Industry 4.0 grants help Michigan manufacturers to adopt new and innovative technologies that will enable them to remain competitive well into the future,” says Quentin L. Messer Jr., CEO of MEDC and president and chair of the MSF Board. “We’re grateful to our partners at Automation Alley, the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center, and our local partners and communities. Together, Team Michigan is strengthening advanced manufacturing and entrepreneurship that create jobs and small business opportunities for future generations of Michiganders.”
Grants will be reimbursement-based and will cover up to 50 percent of eligible technologies, including additive manufacturing, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, robotics and automation, and more. The amount of increased revenue as a result of implementing these technologies is expected to be approximately $83 million, with an estimated 248 jobs created and 1,130 jobs retained.
Grant applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis until all funds are allocated. To learn more about the requirements of the program and to view the grant application, visit here.
Kresge Foundation Wins Architectural Award for Marygrove Early Education Center
The Kresge Foundation has been awarded one of 12 Dedalo Minosse prizes — awarded biennially by the ALA-Assoarchitetti (an Italian association for professional architects) — for commissioning the Marygrove Early Education Center and selecting Marlon Blackwell Architects of Fayetteville, Ark., to design the 28,000-square-foot center that opened last August.
Kresge was one of four non-Italian winners and the only U.S. winner, although a Japanese client-architect pair — J.S.T. Connector and Ryuichi Ashizawa — won a prize for production-engineering center built in Harrisburg, Pa. The other two international prizes went to client-architect pairs in Turkey and Vietnam.
Detroit Program Managing Director Wendy Lewis Jackson accepted the award for Kresge in Vicenza, Italy, along with architect Marlon Blackwell.
An exhibition of winners was opened in conjunction with the awards in Vicenza, and is planned to move to 50 cities, including Detroit.
Construction Starts on Second Major Leg of Joe Louis Greenway
Construction has begun on the Grand River-to-Fullerton section of the 27.5-mile Joe Louis Greenway that will connect Detroiters in 23 neighborhoods to existing trails like the Dequindre Cut, the Detroit Riverfront, four other cities, and each other.
This one-half mile section with a half-acre greenspace is being paid for with $11 million from the city’s share of American Rescue Plan Act funds.
In May 2021, the city began construction on the first leg of the greenway, from Joy Road to Warren, which will be completed and open to the public for the first time later this fall. Construction on this second leg is expected to be completed in Spring of 2023.
For more information, visit www.joelouisgreenway.com.
Varnum Law Firm Launches Dedicated NIL Team
The Varnum law firm in Birmingham has formed a dedicated Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) practice team.
Reflecting the firm’s deep experience representing higher education institutions, collectives, brands, coaches, and athletes, the team consists of subject matter experts who are navigating clients on a daily basis through complex and novel issues in the new and expanding NIL landscape.
The Varnum NIL team, led by partners Rich Hewlett and Jessica Visser, includes 10 attorneys across the firm. The team’s experience is vast and includes:
- Forming and structuring collectives, including on behalf of a Big Ten University’s football and basketball programs.
- Group licensing deals, including with respect to trading cards.
- Securing, protecting, and defending NIL and other indicia of persona assets for athletes, including on behalf of a Heisman Trophy winner and Super Bowl MVP.
- Creation and maintenance of trademark and copyright protection for athletes and coaches.
- Negotiating marketing, licensing, and endorsement agreements on behalf of brands, coaches, and athletes, including with respect to apparel and media rights.
- Advising higher education institutions on NCAA compliance to ensure athlete integrity and eligibility.
- Representing coaches and athletes in their estate planning and asset protection needs.
“Our approach begins with strong knowledge of and adherence to NCAA guidelines, in addition to various state and institutional policies governing NIL matters,” Hewlett says. “We’re pleased to be on the forefront of this space and gratified to be able to help our NIL clients navigate the complicated patchwork of rules in the current landscape.”
Varnum’s NIL coverage includes:
- NCAA compliance
- Corporate structuring
- Membership agreements
- Brand, licensing, and marketing agreements
- Tax structuring and compliance
- Intellectual property
- Estate planning
The Freelon at Sugar Hill in Detroit Opens with Veterans Housing Priority
The Freelon at Sugar Hill, a $36 million development in Detroit’s Midtown area, has opened.
Once a vacant lot now is a 68-unit mixed-income residential apartment building with 14 units reserved for low-income veterans. The facility also has 11,000 square feet of commercial space.
The project is a joint venture between Develop Detroit and the Boston-based nonprofit developer Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH).
“We saw this as an ideal opportunity to develop a unique community to contribute to the lives of Detroiters,” says Sonya Mays, president and CEO of Develop Detroit. “The Freelon brings more than housing to the community, it’s rich in history, rooted in culture, and provides economic stability. Beauty and a luxury experience can be provided in affordable living to Detroiters.”
The development, in the heart of Sugar Hill, once a mainstay of Black culture, grounds itself in the arts and jazz in which the community is known. Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2003, The Freelon features the work of mix-media collage artist Judy Bowman who has created original work displayed on the building’s exterior, while interior artwork from Detroit-based Black artists, was curated by Asia Hamilton with Norwest Gallery of Art.
Consul of Italy in Detroit Paola Allegra Baistrocchi Receives Spirit of Detroit Award
Detroit City Councilmember at-large Coleman A. Young II presented Consul of Italy in Detroit Paola Allegra Baistrocchi with the Spirit of Detroit Award for her achievements, leadership, and dedication to the city during an event honoring the Motorvehicle University of Emilia-Romagna.
The event was part of the LoveITDetroit initiative, a month-long series of promotional activities structured in the form of a festival dedicated to Italian creativity lasting one month.
“I am humbled and honored to receive this award after only one year in Detroit,” Baistrocchi says. “In a short amount of time I have come to love this city. I think it is vibrant but often overlooked. I want to build those bridges between this great city and my country, because there is incredible untapped potential that we can build on to create even more collaborations.”
Detroit Pistons to Host Open Practice at Little Caesars Arena Oct. 2
The Detroit Pistons will conduct an open practice and team scrimmage Oct. 2 at Little Caesars Arena. Doors will open at 10 a.m. and practice will commence at 11:00 a.m. Admission is free.
Fans interested in attending the event may obtain a free general admission ticket by visiting here (four ticket limit per account). Dedicated parking for this event will be available for purchase at the LCA Garage (165 Sproat St.) with other surrounding lots available. Fans can use the Meijer entrance at Little Caesars Arena for entry.
The open practice will serve as opportunity for Pistons fans to get an up-close look at the 2022-23 team, including NBA All-Rookie selection Cade Cunningham, Saddiq Bey, Isaiah Stewart, and new additions Jaden Ivey, Jalen Duren, and more. Pistons head coach Dwane Casey will lead the scrimmage and debut some of the club’s offensive and defensive schemes for the upcoming season.
The event also will feature the 2022-23 Detroit Pistons Entertainment Team, photo opportunities with Pistons mascot Hooper, ticket booths for upcoming games, and concessions available for purchase. The first 1,000 fans that arrive for the open practice will receive a Pistons schedule magnet.
Washtenaw Community College Invites Public to Fall Career Fair Oct. 13
More than 70 employers looking to hire for job openings will be represented at Washtenaw Community College’s (WCC) Fall Career and Internship Fair Oct. 13 in Ann Arbor.
The public and WCC students alike are invited to attend. It’s the first in-person fair since March 2020 and will be from 4-6 p.m. in the newly renovated Morris Lawrence Building on campus, 4800 E. Huron River Drive.
Employers will represent the automotive, advanced manufacturing, banking/mortgage, computer science, education/childcare, engineering, health care, IT, music/entertainment, restaurant/hotel, welding/fabrication, and other sectors. Full-time, part-time and internship positions are open.
Attendees are invited to participate in free online workshops to help prepare for the fair.
To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org. The workshops are:
- “Get Your Resume Ready for the Career Fair,” noon, Oct. 10
- “Create an Elevator Speech That Will Take You Places,” noon, Oct. 11
- “Navigate a Career Fair Like a Pro,” noon, Oct. 12
Businesses registered for the fair include Amazon, Adventure Center, Busch’s Fresh Food Market, Crown Equipment Corporation, Menlo Innovations, Michigan Medicine, Northwestern Mutual Southeastern Michigan, ProMedica, Promess Inc., various departments from the state of Michigan, Zingerman’s, and more.
Attendees are encouraged to check the career fair webpage.