With the general elections over, the biggest news from Lansing this week was the announcement of key leadership positions in the House and Senate. These individuals will play an important role in the budget process as well as creating and moving policy over the next few years. Get to know them better through the following information:
Senate Majority Leader - Randy Richardville (R-Monroe)
Legislative career: 3 terms in the Michigan House of Representatives from 1999-3004, served as House Majority Floor Leader in his final term. Elected to the Michigan Senate in 2006, has served as President Pro-Tempore, Chairman of the Senate Banking & Financial Institutions Committee, Vice-Chair of Economic Development and Regulatory Reform, as well as a member of the Energy Policy & Public Utilities, and Homeland Security & Emerging Technologies Committees.
Previous work experience: 20 years of working in the business field in Fortune 500 companies.
Education: Obtained a degree in Finance from Albion College and a Masters of Management from Aquinas College.
Family: Wife Sarah and two adult children, Amanda and Adam.
Senate Minority Leader – Gretchen Whitmer (D – East Lansing)
Legislative career: Served as a member of the Michigan House of Representatives from 2000-2006, including the House Appropriations Committee for four years. Elected to the Senate in 2006, she has served on the Judiciary, Finance, Education, and Agriculture Committees.
Previous work experience: Corporate litigator specializing in administrative and regulatory law with Dickinson Wright in Lansing as well as practicing administrative law before the Ingham County Circuit Court and the Michigan Public Service Commission.
Education: Obtained a BA in Communications as well as her law degree, Magna Cum Laude, from Michigan State University.
Family: Two young daughters.
Speaker of the House – James “Jase” Bolger (R-Marshall)
Legislative career: Elected to the House of Representatives in 2008 and served as a key member of the House Republican Jobs Task Force on Jobs.
Previous work experience: Business owner who works with Fortune 100 companies throughout the country.
Education: Earned his Bachelor’s of Business Administration and achieved dual majors in Finance and Political Science from Western Michigan University.
Family: Wife Molly, two children Nicholas and Megan.
House Minority Leader – Richard Hammel (D-Mt. Morris Township)
Legislative career: First elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in 2006, served as a member of the prestigious Appropriations Committee.
Previous work experience: Retired skilled tradesman at Delphi Corp. working as a pipefitter from 1978 to 2006.
Education: Earned a Bachelor of Applied Science-Industrial Technology from the University of Michigan-Flint.
Family: Wife Debra, four grown daughters: Alishea, Andrea, Karen and Jessica. Also, five grandchildren: Kaydance, Maygen, Blake, Will, and Zoey.
Other major leadership positions include:
Majority Floor Leader – Arlan Meekhof (R- West Olive)
President Pro-Tempore – Tonya Schuitmaker (R-Lawton)
Minority Floor Leader – Tupac Hunter (D-Detroit)
House of Representatives
Majority Floor Leader –Jim Stamas (R – Midland)
Speaker Pro Tem – John Walsh (R- Livonia)
Minority Floor Leader – Kate Segal (D-Battle Creek)