New state board to help Michigan’s economy get back on its feet

    Gov. Gretchen Whitmer gives an update on COVID-19 | Gov. Whitmer office photo

    Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Friday signed Executive Order 2020-107, creating the Michigan Workforce Development Board, which will be responsible for the development and continuous improvement of the workforce development system in Michigan. 

    The federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) requires the governor to establish a state workforce development board, and this action will abolish the current board, the Michigan Future Talent Council, and creates the Michigan Workforce Development Board.

    “Here in Michigan, the birthplace of the middle class, we must all work together to ensure paths to opportunity for everyone. This board will be vital in continuing our efforts to grow both our workforce and our economy,” Whitmer said. “This group of leaders will be instrumental in bringing together efforts and partners from key industries to expand our workforce, economy and educational attainment efforts.”

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    The board will act as an advisory body to the governor with the goal of developing, implementing and modifying Michigan’s four year plan under the WIOA. 

    Specifically, the board will work on the governor’s 60 by 30 goal set last year to get 60% of the state’s workforce to achieve a postsecondary degree or certification by 2030. 

    “Preparing the state’s workforce for jobs of the future and making sure that Michigan wins on talent will be incredibly important as we work to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to working with these key industry, labor and community leaders, utilizing their diverse perspectives as we build a stronger Michigan together,” said Director of the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity. Jeff Donofrio.

    Board members include, but are not limited to, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan; Central Michigan University President Robert Davies; Henry Ford College President Russ Kavalhuna; DTE Energy Vice Chair and Chief Administrative Officer Dave Meador; and President and CEO of CMS Energy and Consumers Energy Patti Poppe.

    Allison Donahue
    Allison Donahue covers education, women's issues and LGBTQ issues. Previously, she was a suburbs reporter at the St. Cloud Times in St. Cloud, Minn., covering local education and government. As a graduate of Grand Valley State University, she has previous experience as a freelance researcher for USA Today and an intern with WOOD TV-8. When she is away from her desk, she spends her time going to concerts, comedy shows or getting lost on hikes in different places around the world.