President Davies named to new Michigan Workforce Development Board

Panel of state leaders will focus on jobs, economy, education

| Author: Gary H. Piatek

​Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has appointed Central Michigan University President Bob Davies to the newly created Michigan Workforce Development Board.

Whitmer on Friday signed an executive order to create the board, designed to shape policy initiatives to expand the state's workforce, economy and education opportunities.

Key priorities include:

  • Achieving the goal of 60% of the workforce having a postsecondary education by 2030.
  • Tuition-free community college for adults age 25 and older.
  • Grants for employers to train employees with new skills.

"Institutions of higher education have an important role to play in equipping students — at any and every point in their career journey — for success in the modern workplace," Davies said. "Colleges and universities must work collaboratively with our private and public sector partners to identify and pursue goals that will drive innovation, improve our economic outlook and propel our state forward."

The board will seek input from business, civic and educational leaders across the state.

"We must all work together to ensure paths to opportunity for everyone," Whitmer said in her announcement. "This board will be vital in continuing our efforts to grow both our workforce and our economy.

"These leaders will be instrumental in bringing together efforts and partners from key industries."

Jeff Donofrio, director of the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity, will lead the panel, composed of 20 leaders in business, labor, government and education.

Majority leaders of the Michigan Senate and House of Representatives also will appoint a senator and representative to the board, while state House and Senate minority leaders each will appoint a senator and representative to serve in a nonvoting capacity.

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