Detroit District Council of Urban Land Institute to Present Inaugural Placemaker Award

to Edsel B. Ford II and Peter Karmanos Jr.;Amanda Burden to Present

Detroit – The Detroit District Council of the Urban Land Institute (ULI Detroit) announced today that it will honor Edsel B. Ford II and Peter Karmanos, Jr. with its inaugural Placemaker Award. The two business leaders are being recognized for their contribution toward the development of Campus Martius Park and the revitalization of Detroit.

The award will be presented at a dinner on Thursday, November 11 at the Westin Book Cadillac in Detroit. Attendance is expected to exceed more than 500 and will feature a who’s who of local business and real estate executives.

Presenting the award to Ford and Karmanos will be Amanda Burden, chair of the New York City Planning Commission, director of the New York Department of City Planning and the 2009 laureate of the ULI J.C. Nichols Prize for Visionaries in Urban Development. Earlier this year, Campus Martius Park was the first-ever winner of the Urban Land Institute Amanda Burden Urban Open Space Award. This award recognizes an outstanding example of a public open space that has catalyzed the transformation of the surrounding community.

The purpose of the Placemaker Award is to celebrate and honor individuals who have made a positive impact on the vibrancy and quality of life in our community through the use of land. The award also gives ULI Detroit, whose membership includes Michigan’s most prominent real estate developers and professionals, the opportunity to recognize those who have contributed greatly to the local real estate community without being real estate professionals.

“ULI Detroit is proud to honor Edsel Ford II and Peter Karmanos, Jr. for their contribution toward responsible land use in the city of Detroit,” said Robert Taubman and Mark LoPatin, co-chairs of the event. “As a District Council, we have always felt the importance of recognizing the accomplishments of local leadership in and out of our industry.”

“This park has far exceeded all expectations, in terms of the lift it has provided to Detroit’s social and economic well-being,” Burden said of the park. “It reflects a creative, innovative approach to transforming an eyesore into a jewel. What makes Campus Martius Park work so well is that quite simply, it’s a place where people want to spend time. As a result, it’s a magnet for investment. That’s the definition of a successful urban open space.”

From 2005-2008, ULI Detroit honored noted real estate developers through its Lifetime Achievement Award. Winners were: A. Alfred Taubman (2005), Wayne Doran (2006), the late Robert C. Larson (2007) and Jerome Schostak (2008).

For more information about the ULI Detroit and its Placemaker Award, please visit

About Edsel B. Ford II

The great-grandson of Henry Ford, Edsel Ford is a member of the Board of Directors of Ford Motor Company, a position that he has held since 1988.  He currently works as a consultant to the company, active in company affairs and corporate dealer relations.

Mr. Ford is the former chair of the Detroit 300 Conservancy, who celebrated the 300th birthday of Detroit in 2001 and, as one of its legacy projects, created and maintains Campus Martius Park. He is also the owner and chairman of Pentastar Aviation; a majority owner and chairman of Marketing Associates; a Board Director of the International Speedway Corporation; and is the former Chairman of the Detroit Branch of the Chicago Federal Reserve Bank.

Active in several charitable organizations, he is the former chairman of the National Advisory Board of the Salvation Army and is a trustee of The Skillman Foundation and the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

Ford received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Babson College in 1973 and completed the program for Management Development at the Harvard Business School in 1981.

About Peter Karmanos, Jr.

Chairman and CEO of Compuware, Karmanos established the company with two friends in 1973. Detroit’s technology giant now employs more than 4,000 people and earns nearly $1 billion in annual revenue. During the design phase of Campus Martius Park, he decided to relocate company headquarters to its current location adjacent to the Park in order to provide employees with an unique amenity. Karmanos was so interested in the project that he eventually became involved in the design process.

Deeply committed to philanthropy, he has made gifts of more than $50 million to establish and support the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute.  Along with his employees, he supports a variety of other causes.

Karmanos is the co-owner of three hockey teams – The Carolina Hurricanes (NHL), the Plymouth Whalers (Ontario Hockey League) and the Florida Everblades (East Coast Hockey League) – which led him to create a youth hockey program for children in southeast Michigan.

He attended Wayne State University before pursuing his career. An avid gardener, he is a member of MENSA.

Founded in 1936, Urban Land Institute is a nonprofit education and research institute that is supported and directed by its 30,000 members worldwide. Its mission is to provide responsible leadership in the use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide. For more information, please visit the Urban Land Institute website at

The Detroit District Council of the Urban Land Institute (ULI Detroit) was founded in 1997.  Regularly sponsoring programs and forums to encourage an open international exchange of ideas and experiences, members are actively involved in educating the development community. For more information, please visit