Blog: Christianne Sims

Christianne Sims is the director of Fusion, a program of the Detroit Regional Chamber. Fusion is a group dedicated to enriching the community and developing young professionals and entrepreneurs into future leaders. Its goal is to make the region more attractive to young talent and businesses by increasing the quality of life in Metro Detroit.  Fusion builds relationships, increases political and philanthropic activity, and cultivates future leaders, professionals, and entrepreneurs.

Christianne's background also includes diversity management consulting, human resources, and communications. Christianne has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Marketing and International business from Xavier University in Ohio. She is also a girls' lacrosse coach at Grosse Pointe North High School, a member of the Belle Isle Women's Committee, and serves on the board of CampFire USA, in addition to all of her other YP commitments.  

She is a recipient of the Alternatives for Girls' Role Model Award and Crain's "20 in their 20s" Class of 2010. She is a graduate of New Detroit's Multicultural Leadership Series and has been enrolled in the 2009 Diversity Champion Honor Roll of the Race Relations & Diversity Task Force. She has also been named as one of WWJ's Emerging Leaders for 2009.
Christianne Sims - Most Recent Posts:

Post 2: Fusion Fits Into the Mackinac Policy Conference

The state’s most prominent policy conference kicks off in less than two weeks.  The Mackinac Policy Conference has been taking place for over thirty years and draws over 1,300 of the top business, civic, and political leaders to Mackinac Island.  For the third year in a row, Fusion will have a presence at the annual event. Fifty members will participate in a unique "track" that will match them with Leadership Detroit alumni for an enhanced relationship building experience.
In 2008, when Fusion and its contingent of Gen Now attendees collectively attended the conference, it was a two-day event that began on the last day of the conference and included a special session on Saturday. Being that it was the first year and a special track for Gen Now to participate through a discounted, all inclusive package, we knew that we would need to take a gradual integration so not to offend experienced conference attendees. For 2009, the track expanded by one day. It began on Thursday and also included a Saturday morning session.
This year, Fusion is fully integrated into the conference. Attendees will participate Wednesday through Friday, just like the rest of the participants. We went from baby steps to experienced walkers in a matter of a few years.
Fusion's presence has been energizing at this traditional gathering. Just as technology has been changing the production and reach of this island excursion, Fusion has brought a new level of accountability to the words and promises made in sessions and on the Grand Hotel porch. Because we have no personal history, good or bad, with many of the challenges or relationships other attendees have gone through, we are not afraid to ask the tough questions. This is appreciated by panelists and the audience alike.
This year, we look to continue to build up the progress we have made and expand our relationships with key decision makers. This is the one event that all the "movers and shakers" attend. They're available for a quick conversation over a cocktail or between sessions.
There are only a few spots (and I mean few) left for members to participate in this year’s Fusion experience.  Find more information about the Mackinac Policy Conference here.

Post 1: Clichés Don't Begin to Describe Us

Young talent. Young professionals. Emerging leaders. Next generation.  Is it OK that I say that I really dislike all of these monikers?  I am "young" but I'm not a teenager and I have been in the workforce longer than most would think. I’m a "professional" but I know I'm more productive if I wear sweats to work (only after hours or on the weekends. )  I'm a leader but I'm not emerging. Leaders are constantly developing themselves, not metamorphosing in some cocoon waiting for the moment to become The Boss.  And by me being here in present day, I’m part of a Now Generation, not the next one. The next generation would be my future kid.
As the director of a "young professionals" organization, Fusion, how then do I describe the group of people that I’m trying to connect?  As I mentioned before, the Now Generation is one way. I like Generation F, the Fusion generation (a tad bit self-serving) which is the Gen X, Y, and Millennials.  
So what is Fusion? Fusion is an economic development initiative of the Detroit Regional Chamber. Most think of economic development as physical buildings and development. The other side of economic development is the human capital side. Without people to work in those buildings and consumers to buy goods and services, why even have the infrastructure if there is no one there to support it? Fusion's role is to attract, retain and connect the talent that will support the other side of the ED equation. As the first regional membership organization dedicated to engaging Southeast Michigan's talent mix and showcasing the region, Fusion has grown 400% in the first three years.
The membership is diverse and represent all areas of the region. There is no age limit to Fusion but it is "younger" thinking and all "professionals" can participate, even professional students. Members drive the organization and without their dedication to transforming the region and Fusion, it would not be where it is today. But it’s just getting started.  Fusion will continue to connect talent, businesses, and the community together to build relationships between all industries and generations of leaders.
Just this year we have placed members on the Oakland County Business Roundtable and the Chamber's PAC Advisory Board. Seven of Crains Detroit Business "20 in their 20s" 2010 Class are Fusion members.  And for the third consecutive year, Fusion is part of the Mackinac Policy Conference.
We welcome all to work with us in making Detroit, the region, a better place to live, work, play (I had to throw the cliché LWP in at least once.)

Tomorrow: Fusion's Place at the Mackinac Policy Conference