A New Light for Motor City

How grassroots entrepreneurs and inspired religious leaders are working to erase urban blight in Detroit.

Read Time: 2 minutes

November 1, 2011, 1:00 PM PDT

By Kayla Gordon


Stefanie A. Bohde of Urban Faith writes:

"The story of Detroit's economy is a complicated one; a story laden with corruption and racism, greed and even some technological advances that set the city back rather than propelling it forward. It's a story of a city that failed to diversify its business portfolio, leaning too heavily on one industry."

However, amidst the fruition of Detroit's two largest sports franchises (the Lions and Tigers), a new optimism is emerging from a group of young grassroots entrepreneurs and religious leaders who are thinking outside of the box to bring back their once bustling industrial city to life.

"The culture of entrepreneurship in Detroit is a multifaceted and diverse. From clothing designers and fledging venture capitalists to foodies and shop owners, the Motor City is abounding with people who are striving to create their own sense of the American Dream. They're the Grassroots Entrepreneurs - people who are organizing their businesses on the community level rather than flocking to a single industry."

Daniel Clark, an associate professor of history at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan writes: "Cities can start [repairing] roads, the water system, schools - all things that are essential to communities. It may also just be that all Americans have to learn to live with less and buy locally. Detroit needs to do these things in order to strengthen its economy."

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