Tom Wilson Headlines JVS’s 20th Anniversary Strictly Business Luncheon

Networking Event Honors Inspirational Detroiters

Tom Wilson, president and CEO of Olympia Entertainment, will headline the 2017 JVS Strictly Business Networking and Awards Luncheon, marking the event’s 20th anniversary. Serving as honorary chair and keynote speaker, Wilson will welcome an anticipated crowd of over 700 business and community leaders to the fundraising event at 11 a.m. Tuesday, June 13, at the MotorCity Casino in Detroit.

“A leader and visionary in both business and the community, Tom Wilson is playing a key role in the renaissance of Detroit,” said Leah Rosenbaum, JVS president and CEO. “We’re thrilled he’ll share his insight with us at Strictly Business.”

Wilson has served as president and chief executive officer of Olympia Entertainment, at the heart of Detroit’s entertainment scene since 1927 when the Olympia Sports Arena was built in downtown Detroit. Olympia handles business operations for the Detroit Red Wings and collaborates with the Detroit Tigers baseball franchise and other Ilitch companies. Detroit’s Fox Theatre and City Theatre are also among the organization’s portfolio of entertainment venues. Wilson is responsible for guiding and growing these venues as well as looking for opportunities to expand the portfolio.

And that portfolio is expanding in a big way with the new Little Caesars Arena, scheduled to open in September 2017. Little Caesars Arena and the accompanying 50 square blocks of mixed-used development in The District Detroit represent a transformative project adding to the positive momentum already underway in Detroit’s redevelopment.

“The work that JVS is doing—and has been doing for so long—is wonderfully aligned with our workforce development goals,” said Wilson.  “Our $1.2 billion investment in The District Detroit will ultimately account for an estimated total economic impact of $2.1 billion and create more than 12,500 construction and construction-related jobs in addition to 1,100 permanent jobs. We are so proud of the 200 Detroit resident apprentices we’ve got working on Little Caesars Arena, and the fact that Detroiters have worked more than 500,000 hours on the arena site to date.”

In addition to hearing Wilson speak, event goers will enjoy a trip down memory lane with three people who JVS helped to overcome obstacles to employment. George Baldwin of Plymouth, Diane Bryant of Detroit and Tina Rusas of Milford each received JVS Employee of the Year Awards during Strictly Business events over the past 20 years.

“As we revisit their stories, we’ll take inspiration from the challenges they’ve overcome to achieve long-term success,” said Jeffrey Tischler, managing director, Conway Mackenzie and event co-chair. “This event exemplifies JVS’s commitment to helping people help themselves.”

JVS also will present its 2017 Business Leadership Award to imageOne, a local print management company. Company partners Rob Dube and Joe Pearlman strive for excellence in customer service while offering innovative employment environment that enables team members to thrive and contribute to the communities in which they work and live.

A fundraiser to support JVS workforce development initiatives, Strictly Business is co-chaired by Tischler and Randy Rubin, owner of Crypton Fabric. For details about sponsorships and registration, visit or contact Judy Strongman at or (248) 233-4213.