Baird, who was previously a global managing partner of PwC focused on talent recuritment, wanted to accumulate as many corporate contacts as he and others could leverage to make inroads with Amazon and Bezos’ inner circle. He mentioned a connection former Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr had to the publisher of The Washington Post, which Bezos owns.
As the “Amazon field generals” were getting organized, a disparate band of consultants were being brought into the project — some paid, others volunteering for the cause.
“Drones are a real thing,” Baruah wrote in an 8:29 p.m. email to Lewand, one of Duggan’s top deputies.
Through her firm, Acuitas LLC, Hubbard also has been Amazon’s in-state lobbyist for state subsidies the online retailer secured for a distribution center in Livonia and another package-fulfillment facility that’s under construction in Romulus.
And, according to Hubbard, Amazon needed space for development of its ambitious plans to someday deliver packages from the sky.
“From our call this morning, they are highly professional and all business,” Fleisher wrote in a Sept. 19 email to the “commanders.”
“Excellent choice for PMO/Process Management,” Baird replied. “Former chairman of BCG back in the day was a good friend of mine.”
Illustrating the round-the-clock work going into the Amazon bid, Lewand replied nearly five hours later — at 1:12 a.m. the next day.
Later that day, another connection emerged.