Who knows Oakland County better than those who live and work here? In 1993 Oakland County Executive Brooks L. Patterson developed the Business Roundtable Initiative with that in mind. Members are charged with creating programs to enhance Oakland County’s quality of life and business climate.
Matt Gibb, Deputy Oakland County Executive, explains how the Business Roundtable came to be:
“Shortly after Brooks Patterson was elected for the very first time he said, ‘The business community needs to guide us.’ And he reached out to that community and formed the very first Business Roundtable. Now it boils down to four committees…each of those four committees is what we work on in Oakland County to receive information from the leaders within our community to guide us.”
The Oakland County Business Roundtable focuses on four areas, represented by committees made up of business and community leaders. Joseph Welch, ITC Holdings Corporation and Co-Chair of the Business Roundtable believes, “the division [of the Business Roundtable] is really good because it adds a lot of clarity and focus to the things that matter in the community.”
- Economic Development Committee: makes recommendations to promote business, industry and commerce within the County.
- Quality of Life Committee: focuses on intangible elements that make Oakland County a premier location for businesses and families. Partners with the tourism and other industries to make Oakland County a premier place to live, retire, work, and play.
- Transportation Committee: examines transportation issues and identifies actions Oakland County can take to resolve or mitigate them.
- Workforce and Education Committee: examines issues which concern current job holders, job seekers, new work force members, trainees and students. Working to bridge the gap between skilled job seekers and employers.
“The Business Roundtable is a forum where people bring ideas together, and it’s not just ideas because in Oakland County if you have an idea that has merit, it gets done” says Stephanie Bergeron, President and Chief Executive Officer at Walsh College.
Since its inception, 80% of the ideas have been implemented throughout the county. The Oakland County One Stop Shop is one of those ideas. Business leaders needed resources that were easy to find, and a place they could go for ideas and help. The One Stop Shop is there for expanding businesses, start-ups and established businesses in need with guidance, coaching and programs.
Have an idea for Oakland County? Get involved by contacting the Oakland County Business Roundtable to find current opportunities for membership: firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-975-9636. Stay connected with the Business Roundtable on Advantage Oakland’s Facebook and Twitter for more information on upcoming programs and tips.