The Detroit Economic Club presents a conversation with Grant Thornton Chief Economist, Diane Swonk, and Jeff Donofrio, Director of Michigan’s Labor and Economic Opportunity Department. It will be streamed live from the MotorCity Casino Hotel by Detroit Public TV on Tuesday, January 7 from 12:30-1:30pm ET.

What level of economic growth can Michigan expect in 2020 and how is our state performing in today’s battle for talent and business attraction? Certainly, trade wars, interest rates and an election year will each play a role in our state’s economy.

Join Grant Thornton Chief Economist, Diane Swonk, and Jeff Donofrio, Director of Michigan’s Labor and Economic Opportunity Department as they share insights on these topics and more at the 2020 Michigan Economic Outlook Meeting.

Results of the eighth annual Michigan Economic Outlook Survey will be unveiled at this meeting. This highly collaborative effort involves input from over 1,000 business people and many associations throughout the state.


Diane Swonk is one of the most respected macroeconomists, who maintains a unique perspective on the inner workings of Main Street as well as Wall Street. She is an expert on the economics of the labor market, monetary policy and structural changes that are distinct from economic cycles.

Diane’s global network includes economists, industry leaders and geopolitical experts, which amplifies the breadth and reach of her analysis. She advises policy makers at all levels of government, including central bankers. Diane’s uniquely accessible approach to macroeconomic shifts has made her a highly sought-after expert quoted by local, national and international newspapers and broadcasters. Diane has won many awards for excellence in forecasting and leadership in economics and the business community.

For her outstanding contributions in the field of economics, Diane has been named a Fellow of the National Association for Business Economics (NABE). She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, serves on the Sitting Committee to the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago and advises the economics department at the University of Michigan. She has testified before Congress to improve the quality of economic data and on the causes and consequences of income inequalities. She is deeply involved in nonprofit organizations focused on expanding access to education and increasing the quality and diversity of our country’s leadership.

Diane earned her B.A. and M.A. degrees in economics with top honors from the University of Michigan. She received an MBA in finance from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, also with top honors.

Jeff Donofrio, Director of the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity, is charged with coordinating and streamlining the state’s workforce and economic development programs to meet business and labor needs and grow communities where all Michiganders have equal opportunities to reach their fullest potential. Donofrio brings a wealth of experience and proven success in policy, government and workforce development.

Previously he served as the Executive Director of Workforce Development for the City of Detroit where he oversaw the City’s workforce system and was charged with development and implementation of strategies to increase residential employment and household income and improve the economic competitiveness of Michigan’s largest community.

Before joining Mayor Duggan’s staff, Donofrio served as an executive at Ford Motor Company based in Washington, DC. Donofrio also served as District Director for Congressman Sandy Levin and Congressman John D. Dingell and Transportation Policy Advisor to Governor Jennifer Granholm. He grew up working in his family’s bar, restaurant and bowling alley, Clemente’s located in Lincoln Park, MI, that was opened by his Great-Grandparents in the 1920s.

Donofrio serves on the boards of United Way for Southeastern Michigan, Michigan State Housing Development Authority, and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. In 2018, he was appointed to Gov. Whitmer’s transition team as Special Advisor for Jobs and Economic Development and was named to Crain’s 40 under 40 class.

Jeff earned his BA in Public Policy and Secondary Education from Michigan State University and MBA from Georgetown University.

Learn more at the Detroit Economic Club‘s website.