Michigan Municipal League Well Represented on New Protect Michigan Commission

Posted on January 25, 2021 by Dene Westbrook

The Michigan Municipal League is well represented on a new bipartisan “Protect Michigan Commission” tasked with rolling out a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced appointments to the commission which will raise awareness about the safety and effectiveness of an approved COVID-19 vaccine, education the people of this state, and help protect health and safety of all Michigan residents.

“Michigan is working around the clock to ramp up vaccinations and reach our goal of 50,000 shots in arms per day, and with the help of the Protect Michigan Commission we can ensure everyone has a plan to get vaccinated once the opportunity becomes available to them,” said Governor Whitmer in the press release. “Thbipartisan members of this group will play a vital role in helping to reinforce the importance of everyone getting the safe and effective vaccine. I am confident that the members of this commission will rise to the occasion and help Michigan end the COVID-19 pandemic once and for all.” 

Mayor Waterman

Dr. Deirdre Waterman, League Board Vice President and Pontiac Mayor, has been selected to lead the Local Government workgroup for the new commission and the League’s John LaMacchia, assistant director of state and federal affairs, was also appointed to the commission.

Other League members on the commission are Battle Creek Mayor Mark Behnke, Marquette City Commissioner Evan Bonsall, Traverse City Mayor Jim Carruthers, Jackson Mayor Derek J. Dobies, Dearborn Fire Chief Joseph P. Murray, Dr. Lawrence A. Reynolds, with the City of Flint, and Rico Razo, a deputy director for the City of Detroit.


The Protect Michigan Commission, formed in December, serves in an advisory capacity to Governor Whitmer and DHHS.

John LaMacchia

The new members are tasked with providing public leadership to elevate and reinforce the importance of an approved COVID-19 vaccine, identifying barriers that may impede the acceptance of an approved COVID-19 vaccine by Michigan residents, which includes identifying areas or groups within this state that are likely to experience vaccine hesitancy, and develop an outreach action plan designed to overcome these barriers. The Commission must complete its work and submit a brief final report to the governor by December 31, 2021. Appointees will serve until the dissolution of the Commission.  

View the full press release from the Governor’s office.

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