Middle Michigan Development Corporation appoints new chairman, reappoints officers
Middle Michigan Development Corporation appointed a new chairman at its Jan. 15 meeting of the board.
Mark Perry, Firstbank senior vice president, is replacing longtime chairman Rick Barz, CEO of Isabella Bank, who will remain an officer as Past President.
The private, non-profit economic development organization is responsible for the industrial and technological development of both Clare and Isabella Counties.
“Middle Michigan Development has a huge role to play for the region, businesses need an ally and problem solver and that is a role they play very well, I’m very excited about the opportunity in front of us,” Perry said.
President Brian Anderson said officers typically serve a minimum of two years, however, this current slate was re-elected after just one year because the chair stepped down after several years at the helm.
“I think consistency is the key with any organization, so officers are typically invited to participate at that level as long as they’re willing,” he said.
Reappointed officers include: Vice Chair Rod Loomis, Community President of Chemical Bank in Clare, Treasurer Barry Wilkes, Associate Vice President of Finance for Central Michigan University, Secretary Tracey Beadle, Clerk for the City of Harrison, and At-Large Officer Kathy Grinzinger, Mount Pleasant City Manager.
“This group of officers serves as our executive committee, each has demonstrated exceptional leadership in their professions and as influential members of the Mid Michigan community,” Anderson said. “It is an honor to be lead by this committed group of individuals.”
Anderson said MMDC also addresses the needs of local businesses, which can include working with state agencies, partner organizations, educational institutions or other businesses.
“We wear a number of different hats based on the situation,” he said. “Sometimes we’re writing grants for municipalities, sometimes we’re helping businesses get access to services, incentives and financing. No two days in our office are the same.”
Anderson said with the majority of the executive committee already having a year of experience with the company, he feels confident 2013 will be a strong year for MMDC.
“I’m really excited for this coming year,” Anderson said. “They’ve already been instrumental in helping the organization through a lean period while giving me the support I needed to carry out the mission of the organization effectively.”
Anderson said the next big step is to vote on the new strategic plan, which has been a few months in the making and will help MMDC adapt to the changing landscape and policies in Michigan’s business climate.
The company will also release its annual report soon, highlighting some of its favorite projects from the past year, while also raising the bar on its performance metrics.
“We’re starting to really show some nice results from the past three years, so hopefully it will be clear how important the role of MMDC is to our community,” Anderson said. “Overall, we’re very encouraged by signs of growth in our local economy; we’re working harder than ever to address the modern-day issues that businesses are facing in a way that will start to show immediate, tangible results. It should be a great year.”
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