But now, according to ABC affiliate WXYZ here in Detroit, it’s offical. Dan Gilbert is Detroit’s Newsmaker of the Year.
For bringing more than 7,500 workers downtown. For leading a group that has bought (and is refurbishing) 15 buildings. For investing hundreds of millions in a city that many had left for dead. For believing in Detroit.
Here is some info from WXYZ’s website:
WXYZ-TV has chosen Detroit businessman and entrepreneur Dan Gilbert as the 2012 Newsmaker of the Year.
Gilbert is the founder and chairman of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans, and has been a catalyst for change in downtown Detroit. He purchased 15 buildings in the last two years, giving him nearly 2.6 million square feet of commercial space in the heart of the city. He plans to develop the space to bring new businesses, opportunities and jobs to downtown Detroit.
The Newsmaker of the Year also heads up the team spearheading the “Opportunity Detroit” campaign to build momentum downtown.
Gilbert made news in 2010 when he moved the headquarters of Quicken Loans to the Campus Martius area in downtown Detroit. Since then, his companies have moved more than 7,500 employees to downtown locations. Gilbert says his mission is to have a positive impact on the city by creating a technology and web-based hub in downtown Detroit. Despite its challenges, he says he believes Detroit is on the verge of a great comeback and suggests, “it’s always darkest before the dawn.”
It might always be darkest before dawn, but I’m seeing lots of sunlight creeping in lately. And that’s a welcome site a kid who grew up in Detroit. Here’s a video of WXYZ discussing the award. Enjoy!