The May 31st conference is designed to help Greater Cleveland employers connect to the world-class talent in their backyard


Global Cleveland is excited to announce the first economic development conference of its kind in Northeast Ohio. The Global Employer Summit will help local employers connect with the region’s international talent to enhance their competitiveness and strengthen the local economy.

The summit will unfold May 31 at the InterContinental Cleveland Hotel and Conference Center, a global employer and conference co-sponsor, on the campus of Cleveland Clinic, another conference co-sponsor. Registration is now open at

The conference is designed to demonstrate to area employers how to take advantage of the global talent being educated, resettled or immigrating to Greater Cleveland. National talent acquisition experts, as well local employers who are successfully tapping diverse talent streams, will share their insight.

“We know that access to global talent is a key part of competing in the global economy,” said Joe Cimperman, the president of Global Cleveland, a non-profit economic development agency. “After this conference, our employers will be in a better position to fill workforce needs and to become a driver of regional economic growth.”

Greater Cleveland enjoys an unusually rich concentration of international talent. Forty percent of adult immigrants in the metro area hold college degrees, and 21 percent hold an advanced degree. That ranks Cleveland 5th nationally for the education level of its immigrant population. Meanwhile, area universities are educating nearly 7,000 international students, many of whom are pursuing STEM degrees, honing sought-after skills in science, technology, engineering and math.

Many Northeast Ohio companies are already using high-skill immigrants to enhance their competitiveness and grow their businesses. But just as many seem unaware of the international talent in their midst or are unsure how to tap it.

At the Global Summit, experts will offer insight into:

  • Immigration trends and how to build a globally competitive team
  • Engaging with work-ready refugees, community members and partners to grow a reliable and productive workforce
  • The business case for international hires
  • International talent retention and engagement strategies
  • The skillset of the area’s international students and how to navigate the visa process

Companies and organizations sharing their expertise will include Cleveland Clinic, Dwellworks, Envoy Global, Oatey Co., Jergens Inc., Thompson Hine, the Brookings Institution,, Jumpstart Inc. and the Refugee Services Collaborative.

The conference will kick off with an address by Brookings Institution scholar Dany Behar, an expert on international economic development and author of the provocative article A spicy red sauce and how immigrants generate jobs and growth in the US.

The conference also features business leadership conversations and an International Student Showcase that will offer an exhibition of business ideas generated by students from around the world.

Other event sponsors and partners include New American Economy, Case Western Reserve University and Case Western Reserve University School of Engineering, and Squire Patton Boggs (U.S.). The InterContinental hotel is the title sponsor.

Cleveland’s most internationally oriented hotel has had great success hiring international talent, starting with the general manager.

“I’m very excited to be a part of the unmistakable energy happening here in Cleveland,” said Peter Clarke, who arrived in Cleveland last year from Shanghai – by way of Budapest, Bangkok, Bali, London and San Francisco.

Clarke, a native of Ireland, offers a perspective heard often from newcomers. “Cleveland is a city on the rise in every aspect and I look forward to experiencing this and adding to it,” he said.

For more information on the summit, contact Jessica Whale, Director of Global Talent and Economic Development at Global Cleveland:

[email protected] or 216 472-3282