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A Better Partnership


Jan 2011
January 05, 2011

MDEC - West Hosts Business Summit with Consul General of Canada

Roy Norton Will Speak on U.S./Canada Business Relations Jan. 14 in Grand Rapids

Consul General of Canada Roy Norton will speak about several key growth issues facing U.S. and Canadian industries at the Michigan District Export Council – West Business Summit Luncheon in January.

Norton heads the Canadian Consulate General in Detroit, which promotes Canadian interests within the Midwest and focuses on trade, investment, the environment, culture and academic relations.

He will address the following topics during the 90-minute luncheon:

  • Building 21st Century infrastructure projects to sustain bilateral business growth
  • Collaborating between U.S. and Canadian businesses to create, make and move products worldwide
  • Maintaining open procurement opportunities for both countries

The luncheon will be held on Jan. 14 from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the University Club, which is located in the Fifth Third Bank building in downtown Grand Rapids. The cost to attend this event is $26 per person; tables of eight may be purchased for $250. Advanced registration is required no later than Jan.10. Registrations can be placed online at

"We are proud to be able to host Consul General Roy Norton at the Michigan District Export Council - West" said Craig Meurlin, Warner Norcross attorney and chair of the MDEC - West. "The business and cultural relationship between the United States and Canada is extremely important to our state and to the future growth of many or our businesses.

"We look forward to hearing some of Consul General Norton’s insights on how to help business leaders deepen those ties in the coming years, as well as opportunities for growing the already significant relationships between U.S. and Canadian businesses."

Michigan sells more to Canada than to its next 34 largest foreign markets combined. Both countries agree that business opportunities abound and are continually working to improve the quality of these opportunities through economic, cultural, academic and government relations.

Consul General Norton represents Canada in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. Prior to this position, Norton served the Canadian Embassy as Minister in Washington, D.C. He was responsible for the Canadian government's relations with the U.S. Congress, as well as for media and public relations, cultural and academic relations, the interests of Canadian provinces and territories in Washington, D.C. the activities of Canadian legislatures in Washington and outreach to the United States. From 1990-1994 he served in the Embassy's Economic Section and was a member of Canada's negotiating teams for the intellectual property and investment chapters of the North American Free Trade Act, or NAFTA.

He has held positions with the Government of Ontario and in the Canadian Parliament. He graduated from Carleton University in Ottawa, and holds masters’ degrees from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government and Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies, or SAIS, as well as a doctorate from Johns Hopkins SAIS.

About Michigan District Export Council – West

The Michigan District Export Council - West provides practical, hands-on consulting and educational services to assist small and mid-sized businesses successfully export their goods and services. MDEC - West works in conjunction with the U.S Commercial Service to demystify and to promote exports of West Michigan and Upper Peninsula businesses. Established in 2006, MDEC - West has a successful track record of working with businesses in a wide array of industries, including advanced technical equipment, capital equipment, medical devices, machine tools, food processing, lumber, plastics and related areas.

About Warner Norcross & Judd

Warner Norcross & Judd is a corporate law firm with more than 220 attorneys practicing in six offices throughout Michigan: Grand Rapids, Holland, Lansing, Muskegon, Southfield and Sterling Heights. By providing sound legal advice and alternative fee arrangements, Warner Norcross & Judd forges a better partnership with its clients. To learn more follow us on Twitter, @WNJLLP.

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