JACK Entertainment Chief Executive Officer and Rock Ventures Principal Honored at the Marketing and Sales Executives of Detroit Evening of Excellence
Matthew Cullen, principal of Rock Ventures LLC and chief executive officer of JACK Entertainment LLC, was recognized with the Herb Everss Lifetime Achievement Award by the Marketing and Sales Executives of Detroit (MSED) at the 23rd annual Evening of Excellence on March 27 at the Gem Theater in Detroit. The honor is named after Herb Everss, one of the founders of MSED, and is awarded to outstanding business leaders who have made a significant impact in their company, their industry and the communities in which they reside.
“Matt Cullen is the dictionary definition of a visionary who has generated a paradigm shift in how potential investors now view Detroit,” said Dave Harries, chairman of the MSED Evening of Excellence and president of Spartan Marketing Services.
“I am honored to receive the prestigious Herb Everss Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Cullen. “Throughout my career I have been fortunate to have worked with companies and individuals that, while focused on business success, were also very motivated to be strong champions of their communities. That philosophy of doing good while doing well has really become a part of who I am and my efforts to support the renaissance of my hometown have certainly been amongst the most rewarding experiences for me.”
As chief executive officer of JACK Entertainment and principal of Rock Ventures, Cullen has helped bring hundreds of companies, as well as thousands of new workers and residents, into the city and has helped transform the way people invest in Detroit. To date, Rock Ventures has invested more than $2 billion in Detroit’s central business district and plans to invest an additional $2 billion in the coming years.
Cullen is a 29-year veteran of General Motors (GM), where he was general manager of economic development and enterprise services. In addition to coordinating economic development initiatives in the communities in which GM operates, he created a shared services organization and was responsible for the corporation’s vast 450-million-square-foot global real estate portfolio. He was the chief architect of GM’s $500 million acquisition and development of the Renaissance Center as the automaker’s global headquarters. Since 2003 he has helped oversee the billion dollar redevelopment of the city’s international riverfront as the founding chairman of the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy.
Cullen also serves as volunteer president and CEO of the M-1 RAIL Streetcar initiative. The 6.6 mile streetcar, known as QLINE, connects the city’s largest cultural destinations, educational and entertainment facilities and employment centers along Woodward Avenue.
The Herb Everss Lifetime Achievement Award is the third award that Cullen has received from MSED. In 2000, Cullen won MSED’s Marketing Innovator of The Year award and was a recipient of the Executive Leadership Award in 2007. Proceeds from MSED events support the Detroit marketing and sales community through educational programming and collegiate scholarships.