DEGC head Miller steps down for ‘other opportunities’

Christine Ferretti
The Detroit News

Detroit — Rodrick Miller, president and CEO of the Detroit Economic Growth Corp., is stepping down from his role at the end of the month, officials announced Monday.

The agency indicated Miller is “leaving the agency to pursue other opportunities” in a release.

“I’ve enjoyed playing a role in the growth of Detroit’s economy and helping shift perceptions about our community’s value as a targeted location for businesses from around the globe,” Miller said in a statement Monday. “I am excited about the next chapter and have enjoyed getting to know the Detroit business and civic community.”

Miller joined DEGC, the primary economic development agency for the city, in September 2014. His term will end March 31.

“During Rod’s tenure, Detroit’s economic development has accelerated rapidly,” said Jim Vella, chairman of the DEGC board. “Rod’s commitment to projects such as the redevelopment of Paradise Valley and Motor City Match that focus on opportunities and a better quality of life for Detroit-based businesses and residents have been an important part of our progress. We wish him well in his new endeavors.”

DEGC’s Chief Operating Officer Glen Long has been named interim president as the DEGC board searches for Miller’s successor. Long has worked at DEGC for almost 25 years and has been CFO since 2002.

Key economic development milestones during Miller’s tenure, DEGC said, include:

■ Launch of Motor City Match — a small business program aimed at revitalizing neighborhoods that’s distributed almost $3 million in matching grants, supporting more than 570 businesses around the city with grants, technical assistance and expansion capital.

■Development plan for the Paradise Valley Cultural and Entertainment District — a project involving five Detroit-based developers with committed investments of over $50 million to create a district that celebrates Detroit’s African American cultural heritage.

■Groundbreaking for Little Caesar’s Arena along with $170 million in new development announced to-date in the surrounding District.

■Flex-N-Gate: A $95 million investment expected to create up to 650 new jobs in an automotive supply facility in the I-94 Industrial Park.

■Announcement that automotive supplier Adient will locate its global headquarters to Downtown Detroit with 500 jobs and $50 million in capital improvements to the building.

■Consolidation of offices for Ally Bank, with 1,500 employees and contractors now working in Detroit.

■Announcement by Microsoft that it will open a Technology Center in Detroit.

■The Detroit Pistons announcement of its relocation to downtown Detroit.