the detroiters

David Naczycz

"Synergy and Change": Community Leader Answers Our Four Questions



Born and raised in metro Detroit, David Naczycz attended the University of Michigan, before heading off to New York City and later Venezuela. He returned to Detroit in 2000 to pursue a career in organizational change consulting and contribute to the city he loves. In 2002 he co-founded Detroit Synergy Group (DSG), a grassroots organization whose mission is to promote community. By bringing people together to create projects and events, DSG helps to connect people to the city and help them discover the great qualities of Detroit. Today he remains heavily involved in DSG, and is a Senior Associate of The Rae Group, Inc., a firm that specializes in leadership and change consultation.

Naczycz spoke with Nick Sousanis over lunch (at Detroit's American Masala) and answered's famous four questions.


I've always believed in the potential of Detroit. It's home, and my job brought me back here in 2000. A lot of the work I want to do professionally is here.

Plus it's a great town - the most exciting thing about Detroit is the potential to do all kinds of different and interesting stuff.


In my job we engage with leaders of organizations and communities to help them achieve their visions and goals. I enjoy helping people become successful in whatever they do. I also think that our firm's methodology can be used to overcome many of the ills that plague cities.


It's unknown. However, since the city is such a blank canvas, I would expect it will continue to be a place where people come to experiment, create, and innovate in all its empty and abandoned places. If this community can figure out a way to encourage that innovation, they can tap into a significant source of growth for the city.


Specifically as it pertains to Detroit - I hope the city will be one that embraces it and uses it to become viable and prosperous. Obviously a community with a lot of obstacles to growth could benefit very well with our methodology, so that it literally could be an example of a major metropolitan region that uses our work to turn itself around. If there is leadership in this community that wants to take on this challenge, we can help them.

Who will be the next detroiter to face our four questions? Watch this space...

For a look at detroiters past, here's a few:
"The Passenger" writer/director Jamie Sonderman
DEQ founder, DJ Shortround
Author Lynn Crawford
Godfathers of Techno, Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson
Theatre Artistic Directors Oliver Pookrum and York Griffith
Art Gallery Directors Aaron Timlin, Phaedra Robinson, and Mitch Cope

Other (non-4 question) Detroiter interviews from our archives:
Artist Charles McGee
Artist Tyree Guyton
Artist Scott Hocking
Artist John Ganis
Sculpture Conservator Giorgio Gikas
Artist Peter Williams

© 2002