Society Confidential: DIA honors GM’s Ed Welburn

Chuck Bennett

DIA honors GM’s Welburn

Attending auto shows and revealing sparkling new vehicles all over the world is a major part of EdWelburn’s job. It’s what he does. But this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit has already catapulted the GM VP of Global Design swiftly to cloud nine. Ed’s special week began on Sunday at Shed 3 in Eastern Market where he and his team revealed the much talked about Buick Avista concept, which went on to claim the impressive EyesOn Design Award for Design Excellence. On Monday, he attended a dinner party at the DIA for GM execs (including head honcho Mary Barra) and national and international media, where DIA Director Salvador Salort-Pons surprised him with the exciting announcement that the museum’s GM Center for African American Art is being rededicated in the name and honor of Edward T. Welburn. On Wednesday night, he hosted an elegant party at the posh Forte Belanger headquarters, mostly for members of his global design team. “This is a personal party that I like to do to just thank a lot of people,” he explains. “But yes, this has already been a pretty incredible week. I’ve been kind of pinching myself. And it’s not over yet.”

Karen Dumas takes Detroit’s pulse

We couldn’t help but notice that women seem to be taking over the weekend airwaves at the recently reformatted 910 AM radio station, which is part of the Adell Broadcasting Group. There’s Judge Vonda Evans and Councilwoman Mary Sheffield, former mayoral candidate Crystal Crittendon, former Councilwoman JoAnne Watson, and even (one that will surely get lots of attention — at least initially) former chief of staff Christine Beatty — all lending their voices to the emerging all-talk station. We were pleased to learn that communications powerhouse/radio personality Karen Dumas also will host a show called “The Pulse” from 10 a.m. to noon Sundays. “ ‘The Pulse’ will bring a different perspective and level of conversation focusing on people, politics and pop culture,” explains Dumas, who was once called the “intelligent choice” of talk radio by Hour Magazine. “Our conversations will be enlightening, informative, maybe sometimes a little shocking and controversial, and always entertaining.” Now you’re talking.

Children’s Hospital of Michigan in Troy welcomes VIPs

The new Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Troy, opened in grand style Saturday night with a festive VIP celebration. Radio personality Paul W. Smith welcomed the esteemed crowd, which included U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence and Congresswoman Debbie Dingell. The evening was the first peek into this incredible building that was actually designed by kids, for kids. The smooth sounds of Ben Sharkey permeated the building, and at one point, a dazzling fireworks display brought amazement and cheers to more than 500 guests. Each guest left with a warm cozy blanket with a note saying, “Children’s Hospital of Michigan ... Now COVERING Oakland County.” Luanne Thomas Ewald, vice president, Business Development at Children’s Hospital, says, “We are thrilled to be bringing the Children’s Hospital of Michigan physicians and health care teams into Troy. This building is spectacular and unlike any other in the country. It was designed by kids, families, physicians and nurses with their wants and needs and wishes in mind. It is truly amazing and I couldn’t be more proud of it.”

Chuck Bennett is creator of the Social D. See TheSocialD.