Gov. Rick Snyder today announced the appointments to the new 21st Century Infrastructure Commission, which was created by Executive Order 2016-5 to identify long-term strategies to help ensure Michigan’s infrastructure remains safe and efficient now and into the future. Among them, Gavin Leach of Northern Michigan University.
The 27-member commission includes individuals representing the business, government, nonprofit, and academic communities. Specifically, commission members possess expertise in infrastructure design and planning, underground infrastructure, municipal planning, public utilities, water and sewer infrastructure, wastewater treatment and drainage, land use or communications and technology. Membership consists of 15 gubernatorial appointees, four legislative appointees and eight department directors or their representatives.
Serving as an advisory body within the Executive Office, the commission must present an infrastructure assessment and its recommendations no later than Nov. 30, 2016.
The Governor’s appointees are:
Dr. Janice Beecher, of Haslett, has served as director of the Institute of Public Utilities at Michigan State University since 2002, bringing more than 30 years of applied research experience to the position. She earned a bachelor’s degree in economics, political science, and history from Elmhurst College and both a master’s and doctorate in political science from Northwestern University.
Roger Blake, of Berkley, is the regional vice president of government and education solutions at AT&T. He earned a bachelor’s degree in telecommunications from Michigan State University, and a master’s of business administration in general management form the University of Michigan.
Bob Daddow, of Rochester, is the deputy county executive of Oakland County. He is a SMART board member, chairman of the Great Lakes Water Authority board of directors, is former vice-chairman of the Michigan Municipal Services Authority, and a former member of the Board of Scholars – Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Daddow is a certified personal accountant and earned both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration from Central Michigan University.
Eric DeLong, of Grand Rapids, is deputy city manager for the City of Grand Rapids; DeLong is the chairperson of Grand Valley Regional Biosolids Authority, chairperson of the Grand Rapids Utility Board, chairperson of the Grand Rapids Building Authority and is treasurer of the Michigan Municipal Services Authority. He holds a bachelor’s degree in local government administration from Central Michigan University and a master’s in public administration from Michigan State University.
Carl English, of Bingham Farms, is retired as senior vice president of Consumers Energy andserved as chief operating officer of American Electric Power Service Corporation. He currently serves on the board of the Utility Supply and Construction Co. and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. English holds both a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering and a master’s in business administration from Michigan State University.
Sue Foune, of Paw Paw, is the public services managing director for the City of Kalamazoo. She is a member of the American Water Works Association, Michigan Water Environmental Association, Kalamazoo River Watershed Council Board, Kalamazoo Environmental Council and the American Backflow Prevention Association. Foune holds numerous wastewater licenses and laboratory certifications, as well as a bachelor’s degree in biology from Western Michigan University.
Joi Harris, of West Bloomfield, is vice president of gas operations for DTE Gas, DTE Energy’s natural gas utility. She serves as vice president of the board of directors for the Detroit Area Pre‐College Engineering Program and is a member of the Wayne State University Industrial Engineering Advisory Board. She holds both a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and a master’s in business administration from Wayne State University.
Gavin Leach, of Marquette, is vice president of finance and administration at Northern Michigan University. He is a certified public accountant and holds both a bachelor’s degree in accounting and master’s in public administration from Northern Michigan University.
Mike Nystrom, of East Lansing, is the executive vice president and secretary of the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association. Nystrom also serves as the co-chair of the Michigan Transportation Team, and is currently the executive director of the Builders Exchange of Lansing. He holds two bachelor’s degrees from Michigan State University.
Evan Pratt, of Ann Arbor, is the drain commissioner for Washtenaw County. He serves as chair of the Huron River Watershed Council board of directors and serves on the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission. Pratt is a professional engineer and holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Doug Rothwell, of Ann Arbor, is president and chief executive officer of Business Leaders for Michigan, which includes 80 senior executives from Michigan’s largest companies and universities. He is chair of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s executive committee, and holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Delaware and a master’s in public administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Brian Steglitz, of Ann Arbor, is the vice president of the American Water Works Association and manager of water treatment services for the city of Ann Arbor. Steglitz holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from Yale University and a master’s degree in civil and environmental engineering from Stanford University.
Helen Taylor, of Okemos, is the state director of the Nature Conservancy. She has spent more than 27 years working on Great Lakes protection, policy, and conservation, and also serves as chair of the board of the Conservancy’s Great Lakes Project. Taylor holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Northwestern University in Chicago.
Louis Taylor, of Saginaw, is an engineering services manager for WadeTrim. He has more than 26 years of experience in construction engineering and design for transportation projects and served for two years as assistant city engineer for the City of Bay City. Taylor holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Michigan Technological University.
Evan Weiner, of Franklin, serves as the chief operating officer and executive vice president of Edw. C. Levy Co., Detroit. He has served as a trustee of the Henry Ford Museum since 2005, is on the board of directors for Beaumont Health, is a trustee of the Michigan Chamber, and has been a member of the Michigan Council of American Israel Public Affairs Committee since 1990. Weiner holds a bachelor’s of science degree from Colorado College. He will serve as chair.
Legislative appointees are:
Mike DeVries, of Grand Rapids, is the vice president and operations manager at Transportation Business Line at AECOM. He holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Calvin College and a master’s degree in transportation engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. DeVries will serve as Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof’s appointee.
Ronald Brenke, of Perry, is the executive director of the American Council of Engineering. He holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Michigan State University and will serve as Senate Minority Leader Jim Ananich’s appointee.
Brian Mills, of St. Johns, is the chief operating officer for the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA). He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science, public administration and business management from Central Michigan University. He will serve as Speaker of the House Kevin Cotter’s appointee.
Beverly Watts, of Detroit, is director of the Wayne County Department of Public Services. She holds a bachelor’s degree in telecommunications from Michigan State University and will serve as House Minority Leader Tim Greimel’s appointee.
Department directors include:
- Kirk Steudle, Director of the Department of Transportation
- Keith Creagh, Director of the Department of Environmental Quality
- Jamie Clover Adams, Director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
- David Behen, Director of the Department of Technology, Management and Budget
- Steve Arwood, CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation
- William Moritz, Director of the Department of Natural Resources
- Valerie Brader, Executive Director of the Michigan Agency for Energy
- Sally Talberg, Chairman of the Michigan Public Service Commission
Members will serve terms expiring at the pleasure of the Governor. These appointments are not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.