The goals of many are often rooted in one main desire: Comfort. People want to live a comfortable life, work a job they’re comfortable doing, for an employer they’re comfortable with. Kalik has never been like “the many." He believes that challenge and discomfort foster growth and strength in a person, and in turn in a community. Without this challenge, growth and change would largely remain undiscovered. Kalik attended a high school that was often viewed as the underdog. People called it a “ghetto” or “thug” school. The school where the so-called bad kids went. The school of students with little to no expectation of success. Instead of attending a school that was more comfortable, Kalik found passion in working with something devalued and bringing positive change. This is what Detroit is to Kalik - the city that many view as trash. The people who are viewed as inferior and incapable. The abandoned buildings that some believe are better off destroyed. Detroit is the underdog. Kalik is able to see the potential that Detroit has despite its reputation. He recognizes the beauty of the city and the entrepreneurial spirit of its people. He is able to look past the stigma of disparaged city and is determined to find a way to help it grow.
“A forest doesn’t contain just on species of tree, and the roots that are buried in the soil feed off of each other and help each other grow.” Those were Kalik’s words when describing the people of Detroit, and the promise of growth. Everyone looks different. Everyone has a different story to tell. Everyone has a different dream or vision of Detroit. Kalik loves being able to shift the focus from a person’s appearance and seeing them for their ideas instead. Think Detroit is a platform where Kalik can work persistently and diligently to bring together all these different people of the Detroit community and help them grow their ideas. Think Detroit is the soil for all the entrepreneurial roots of Detroit. This city may be an underdog and its people may be underestimated and easily dismissed, but Kalik knows better than to overlook the astounding beauty and passion that lies within its extraordinary roots.