Ford Motor Co. Fund’s Jim Vella elected Chair of DEGC Board

Jim Vella Photo
James G. (Jim) Vella


James G. (Jim) Vella was elected chair of the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) and Detroit Economic Growth Association (DEGA) Boards of Directors effective September 24, 2015, succeeding Roderick D. Gillum. Vella is president of Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. DEGA is the sister agency of DEGC and its purpose is to collect funds for programs that will help revitalize Detroit.

“As a native Detroiter, I am committed to improving the quality of life for the residents of this great city,” Vella said. “Rod Gillum has provided tremendous leadership in helping Detroit at this critical time, and I look forward to working with the civic and business leaders who are already making great strides in Detroit’s recovery.”

Roderick D. Gillum, partner, Jackson Lewis P.C., and retired vice president of General Motors, served as DEGC board chair since 2011.

“Jim’s leadership and contributions as a member of the Executive Committee of the DEGC has been recognized with his election as chair,” Gillum said. “His prominent and proven commitment to the long-term viability of Detroit will help sustain DEGC’s critical role as a catalyst for investment and jobs in this community for years to come.”

The following people were named to new three-year terms on the DEGC board:

  • Dave Meador, DTE Energy
  • Denise Lewis, Honigman
  • Rob Biskup, Deloitte
  • Peter Kellett, Dykema

The following people were named to three-year terms on the DEGA board:

  • Dave Meador, DTE Energy
  • Denise Lewis, Honigman
  • Fred Feliciano, Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council
  • John James, James Group International
  • Rod Biskup, Deloitte
  • Peter Kellett, Dykema
  • Tosha Tabron, JP Morgan Chase
  • Linzie Venegas, Ideal Shield
  • Lalit Verma, Sakthi Automotive

Tiffini D. Smith
Director of Communications