People First Economy Welcomes Carlos Martinez as New President

Transition Marks New Era for Sustainable Economic Development in Michigan

People First Economy, a leading organization in fostering sustainable economic growth in Michigan, is excited to announce the appointment of Carlos Martinez as its new President. Martinez succeeds Hanna Schulze, who is stepping down to join her family business, Globe Design and Vision.

Carlos Martinez’s appointment comes with an impressive background in diverse sectors. His career has encompassed roles in economic development, higher education, community engagement, and global partnerships. Notably, Carlos has recently served as the Director of Development at the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and as the Manager for Global Career Development at New York University. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Michigan State University and a Master of Education from Grand Valley State University.

Under Hanna Schulze’s stewardship, People First Economy has seen remarkable growth and impact. Schulze stated, “I began my career with this organization over a decade ago, and it has been a privilege to watch our work grow and evolve as I have. Having the opportunity to bring in a leader as talented, values-aligned, and thoughtful as Carlos is the biggest privilege of all, and I am so excited to see how People First Economy thrives under his leadership.”

Carlos Martinez is dedicated to sustainable economic development. “I am immensely honored and excited to step into the role of President at People First Economy. Joining a team that has already laid a remarkable foundation for sustainable economic development in Michigan fills me with great anticipation for what lies ahead,” said Martinez. He further emphasized the importance of supporting local businesses, “Business owners form a foundational bedrock of local living economies, and it is essential that we continue to provide them with access to tools and training focused on sustainable growth best practices.”

In the coming months, he plans to:

  • Deepen his existing knowledge and relationships within People First Economy’s programs, initiatives, and stakeholder groups.
  • Identify opportunities to scale the organization’s impact in metro Detroit and Northern Michigan through existing partnerships with universities, local governments, and Entrepreneur Support Organizations (ESO).

Carlos’ vision is to create an inclusive, circular, and regenerative economy that prioritizes community care, positioning Michigan as a national leader in building a People First Economy. To meet Carlos, and learn more about PFE’s recent growth and plans, visit the official PFE website to join the team for its Annual Meeting on Thursday, February 29th.

About People First Economy (PFE)

People First Economy (PFE) is a dedicated business development organization aimed at providing accessible business assistance to Michigan small business owners. Through community partnerships and innovation, PFE is dedicated to building programs and empowering people who are working toward an economy that puts people first. By connecting consumers to local businesses, helping business owners build sustainable businesses, and incubating new initiatives PFE allows businesses to excel within their respective industries. To learn more about reshaping the economic landscape with PFE, please visit

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