ReThink West Michigan, a collaborative, regional event hosted by The Right Place, Inc. and Hello West Michigan, was awarded Best in Show by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) at the Council’s 2019 annual conference.

ReThink West Michigan is a casual, professional networking event hosted at multiple locations on Thanksgiving Eve and is intended to attract professionals who have moved away from home and are visiting for the holiday. At this event, several West Michigan companies with current career opportunities share some of the exciting initiatives and projects happening in the region

The IEDC received over 400 submissions from 12 countries for the 2019 awards, and ReThink West Michigan was selected as the top entry overall, making it a globally recognized best practice in economic development. The event also received a Gold Excellence in Economic Development Award in the Talent Development and Retention category, and The Right Place Instagram channel, West Michigan Life, received a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award in the Digital Media category.

Left to right: Andria Romkema, Lina Lintemuth, Jessica Kuster, Cindy Brown, Rachel Bartels, Jillian Elliot, Eric Heys & Natalia Kovicak

IEDC's Excellence in Economic Development Awards recognize the world's best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials, and the year's most influential leaders. 34 award categories honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in creating positive change in urban, suburban, and rural communities. Awards are judged by a diverse panel of economic and community developers from around the world.

"The recipients of IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development awards represent the very best of economic development and exemplify the ingenuity, integrity, and leadership that our profession strives for each and every day”, said 2019 IEDC Board Chair, Tracye McDaniel. “We’re honored to recognize more than 100 communities for their excellent work, which forges new opportunities for our profession. We look forward to even greater participation from economic developers across the globe in the 2020 awards program.”


Rethink West Michigan
ReThink West Michigan is a casual, professional networking event hosted at multiple locations on Thanksgiving Eve and is intended to attract professionals who have moved away from home and are visiting for the holiday. At this event, several West Michigan companies with current career opportunities share some of the exciting initiatives and projects happening in the region. Since being established by The Right Place and Hello West Michigan in 2012, ReThink West Michigan has attracted more than 1,000 attendees and 72 participating companies, resulting in over 70 hires. 2019 locations include Fremont, Grand Rapids, Hasting, Ludington, Muskegon County and Oceana County. Find more information at www.rethinkwm.com

West Michigan Life Instagram
In 2018, The Right Place launched its West Michigan Life Instagram channel (www.instagram.com/westmichiganlife), designed to highlight the people and places that make up the region. Featured individuals share the reasons they love to live, work, and play in West Michigan, highlighting the exceptional quality of life the area has to offer. Quality of life has become an important decision factor as companies compete to attract talent, and this account shines a spotlight on the many reasons people are choosing West Michigan. Individuals who would like to be featured on the account may contact Lina Lintemuth at lintemuthl@rightplace.org.