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September 12, 2014

SVSU Business Sustainability Conference receives generous support from Consumers Energy and Stevens Center for Family Business

Saginaw Valley State University has announced two major sponsorships for its international conference on business sustainability Tuesday, Sept. 23 through Friday, Sept. 26. SVSU's College of Business and Management is partnering with Shri Ram College of Commerce, the renowned business school of the University of Delhi, India,  in organizing this conference on SVSU's campus.

“We are delighted to acknowledge Consumers Energy and the Stevens Center for Family Business as premier sponsors for the conference,” said Rama Yelkur, dean of the College of Business & Management  at SVSU. “Their generous support and active participation in this event have made it possible to have this innovative program at SVSU which will benefit both the local business community and our students.”

Dennis Dobbs, vice president of generation engineering and services  for Consumers Energy said the utility is pleased to co-sponsor the program. “At Consumers Energy our promise is to deliver the energy customers need, whenever they need it. That includes helping Michigan save energy, caring for the communities we serve and developing green energy supplies for the future.

“We have helped Michigan residents and businesses save more than $575 million through our energy efficiency programs since 2009, and are proud to have provided more than $150,000 in rebates to SVSU for making energy-savings upgrades,” Dobbs said.

“Consumers Energy has been a pioneer in environmental stewardship in the state of Michigan for over 125 years,” Yeklur said. “We are delighted to recognize Consumers Energy as a premier sponsor for the Global Business Sustainability Conference. They have made a significant investment in renewable energy, energy efficiency and clean energy to support their stewardship philosophy.”

Brenda Rowley, vice president of operations for Rowleys Wholesale and chair of the Stevens Center for Family Business executive council, said sponsoring the conference is a natural fit.

“Sustainability is always an important factor for family businesses,” she said. “Their leadership typically takes a long-term perspective, so that the business 'sustains' and successfully transitions from one generation to the next.

“Family businesses are also known for being dedicated to the well-being of their communities and the broader world,”  Rowley continued.  “This is demonstrated in their increasing focus on environmental sustainability, economic development and social responsibility.”

“We are thrilled to have the Stevens Center for Family Business as one of the premier sponsors of the Global Business Sustainability Conference,” Yelkur said. “The Center is a major resource for family businesses in our region and supports family business sustainability through education, networking and collaboration.”

The conference features several industry panels with participation from businesses in the Great Lakes Bay region and beyond. Included are sessions that include the premier sponsors, one on family business sustainability Wednesday, Sept. 24 from 10:30 to noon, and the other on sustainable energy Friday, Sept.  26 from 10:30 to noon.
The conference kicks off Tuesday, Sept. 23  with a welcome reception at SVSU's Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum and continues over the next three days with numerous concurrent sessions, featuring both industry expert panels and presentations of original research on sustainability by academic scholars. In both the industry and academic tracks, individual sessions will focus on sustainability topics in a wide range of sectors including agribusiness, the automotive industry, construction, entrepreneurship, energy, family business, information technology and doing business in India.

This distinctive global conference is open to all business professionals, community leaders, academic scholars, and students with an interest in sustainability. For more information and to register for the conference, visit Both full conference and single-day registration options are available.

About Consumers Energy

As Michigan's largest energy provider of renewable energy  the company was named as the Midwest's "environmental champion" in a recent national survey of energy providers.

Consumers Energy is committed to Michigan. The company and its foundation  as well as more than 7,500 employees  have contributed $2.8 million in the past decade to Great Lakes Bay region organizations. The Consumers Energy Foundation has also contributed more than $180,000 to Saginaw Valley State University in the form of grants, sponsorships and support for the Marshall Fredericks Sculpture Museum.Today, nearly 100 graduates of Saginaw Valley State University work for Consumers Energy.  

Consumers Energy, Michigan's largest utility, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS) , providing natural gas and electricity to 6.5 million of the state's 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.

About the Stevens Center for Family Business

As part of the College of Business and Management, the Stevens Center for Family Business supports family business success through the generations by providing a wide range of educational and networking opportunities.  With a triple focus on community outreach, academics and original research, the Center serves a wide range of constituencies, including family business owners, leaders, and trusted advisors.  Since its founding in 2000, the SCFB has served more than 900 people from over 290 different family firms.  Approximately 550 other community leaders have benefited from the Center's offerings, and more than 750 students have attended courses, programs and presentations offered by the Stevens Center for Family Business. For more information, visit .

About SVSU College of Business and Management

Saginaw Valley State University's College of Business & Management provides a distinctive business education by integrating academic and experiential learning while challenging students to develop as professionals, leaders, and entrepreneurs in a dynamic, global environment. The college is among of the less than 5 percent of business schools worldwide that are accredited by AACSB-International, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business . SVSU offers undergraduate programs in accounting, economics, finance, international business, management, supply chain management, and marketing as well as an MBA program. The college also hosts the Stevens Center for Family Business which offers resources for the unique needs of family-owned businesses. For more information, visit

About Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University

For more than 75 years, Shri Ram College of Commerce has been a distinctive destination for those aspiring to pursue careers in business and economics. The college offers undergraduate degrees as well as a Post Graduate Diploma in Global Business Operations, similar to an international business MBA.  SRCC alumni occupy distinguished positions in government, banking, finance, academia and business. For four consecutive years, the school has been recognized as the No. 1 commerce school in India through a multi-faceted rating process conducted in partnership between India Today, the leading newsweekly in India, and Nielsen Company. For more information about SRCC, visit