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Published in Economic Development

Top Whitmer economic official to lead Business Leaders for Michigan

BY Friday, October 16, 2020 01:38pm

Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity Director Jeff Donofrio is resigning his government position to take the helm at Business Leaders for Michigan, the state’s business roundtable.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced today that Susan Corbin will serve as acting director of the department effective immediately. 

Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity Director Jeff Donofrio COURTESY PHOTO

Donofrio is expected to start his role at Business Leaders for Michigan later this year. He will replace CEO Doug Rothwell, who announced in April that he would retire by the end of the year.

“Jeff has been a true champion for Michigan businesses and working families during one of the toughest periods in our state’s history,” Whitmer said in a statement. “As we’ve been fighting COVID-19, Jeff's team has expanded benefits for hundreds of thousands of working people who’ve lost a job, provided critical support to our small businesses, and ensured our workers stay safe on the job. I look forward to working with Jeff in his new role, and I know Susan is ready to step up and help us continue the important work to rebuild our economy and help our families and businesses succeed.” 

Donofrio’s departure caps a relentless seven months at LEO, which has overseen the distribution of jobless benefits and the swift expansion of unemployment resources, as well as widespread workplace restrictions because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Corbin has worked in state government for the past three administrations and has been senior deputy director of LEO since August 2019. She formerly worked at the Michigan Public Service Commission, the Department of Education and the former Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth.

Corbin said she is “ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work for Michigan’s working families. Thanks to Governor Whitmer’s bold leadership during the pandemic, Michigan’s economy is poised for a strong recovery. We’re going to keep working around the clock to ensure Michigan’s families and small businesses have the support they need as we rebuild our economy together.”

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