OED brings people together to share ideas, grow as leaders, and drive progress in the civic, community and economic development landscape.

Detroit Revitalization Fellows

Detroit Revitalization Fellows launched its first cohort of talented, emerging leaders from Detroit and around the U.S. in 2011. Since then, 80 Fellows have engaged in this rigorous two-year leadership development program while serving full time at organizations focused on community, civic and/or economic development. Recognizing that Detroit is not the same place it was in 2011, DRF is reorienting to support and connect leaders who work to build the capacity of Detroit's communities and neighborhoods, while ensuring a commitment to equity in the face of a rapidly transforming city and region.

Van Dusen Urban Leadership Forum

The Van Dusen Urban Leadership Forum brings together national experts with local leadership to demonstrate new ways of thinking, sharing and problem-solving in urban communities. Recent guests have included artist and urban planner Theaster Gates; artist, designer and urban planner Candy Chang; comedian, author and entrepreneur Baratunde Thurston; and cultural critic and film producer/director Dream Hampton.

Detroit Orientation Institute

This long-running program, led by OED for the last decade, engaged business, community, media, nonprofit, political, civic and student leaders in immersive events that illuminate Detroit and foster connections. In 2017, DOI partnered with the Detroit Historical Society on "Detroit 67: Looking Back to Move Forward," a series of public dialogues to help link the efforts commemorating the civic unrest of July 1967 with broader themes that still impact our region.