VOICE KNOWLEDGE CONNECTION WORK EDUCATION ADVOCACY COMMUNICATION SUPPORT DIRECTION LEADERSHIP
THE MICHIGAN WORKS! ASSOCIATION LEADS WITH PASSION TO
INFLUENCE OUTCOMES AND ACHIEVE POSITIVE RESULTS
In 2019, we sharpened our focus to move the needle on policy, education and
collaboration. When we act, advocate and innovate together, we create
opportunity and build stronger communities.
The Association’s private sector-led Board of The Association’s organizational structure has been
Directors is focused on the growth and influence of evaluated, job descriptions have been revised and
the Association. strong, new leaders have been hired. Additionally, a
new purpose statement has been developed:
The Association launched a discovery process in 2018
to understand member priorities, determine Influencing, educating and
accountability and develop recommendations for inspiring actions that keep
strategic action. Michigan working.
THE GOAL WAS TO CHART A NEW COURSE TO Team-building events and training have occurred and
“RESET” THE ASSOCIATION, WHICH REQUIRED A individual and team objectives that connect to the
MULTI-PRONGED APPROACH BOTH INTERNALLY Association’s purpose serve as guideposts for future
AND EXTERNALLY. action.
Nearly 30 in-depth interviews with members, With the recent recommendation from Directors’
board, staff and consultants were conducted and Council to the Board of Directors to begin a
synthesized. The results validated the value discussion of the Association’s Governance, an
proposition of the pillars on which the Association opportunity is presented to rethink the role of the
was built: Association, examine its services, address common
perceptions/misconceptions and forge a new path
1. ADVOCACY forward.
3. BRIDGE-BUILDER / NETWORKING We look forward to maintaining our focus on services
4. OTHER that support a strong talent pipeline that meets the
demands of current and future employers.
• Users’ Groups / Convene meetings
• Interpreter of policy / Updates
• Annual Conference / Impact Awards
• Single point of contact / Statewide voice
THE POWER OF MICHIGAN
WORKS! ASSOCIATION LIES IN
THE COLLABORATION OF PRIVATE
WORKING TO ACHIEVE COMMON
GOALS - OUR BOARD, MEMBERS,
STAFF AND PARTNERS.
We foster a vibrant community of
workforce partners and offer essential
tools and services to help members
become more successful:
• VOICE: We advocate for resources and policies and shape
legislation that supports a dynamic workforce agenda
• KNOWLEDGE: We empower workforce leaders through
events like the Annual Conference and essential, targeted
• CONNECTION: We pave the way for progress through
trusted, valuable connections - establishing and
maintaining strong relationships
Through a strong array of services —
including our signature and recently
accredited Business Solutions
Professional program—we support
economic development by ensuring full
engagement of community partners.
We also work to engage policy
makers and the media, helping them
understand the value and impact of the
work performed by members locally.
ADVOCACY The Association coordinated a complex schedule of
visits, with a broad cross-section of legislators, during
Throughout 2019, the Association met with key Legislative Day, resulting in the formation of
leaders of Governor Whitmer’s team to determine relationships that will help us achieve our legislative
how to address the growing talent shortage. We goals.
continue to engage the administration to support our
workforce agenda and legislative priorities. We will continue to work to strengthen
A primary issue in 2019 was securing funding for the relationships between our members and key
Business Resource Networks. With historically low lawmakers by scheduling Michigan Works! Service
numbers of unemployed job seekers, higher Center visits.
percentages of the job candidates for entry-level
positions have more barriers to employment than in POLICY LEADERSHIP
The Association’s newly revitalized Legislative The Association is at the table with public and private
Committee developed Board-approved legislative sector stakeholders to offer guidance and support
priorities in 2019 and all priorities were achieved. on the design, development, implementation and
operation of policy and state-level initiatives that
3 influence workforce progress. High-level policy topics
include, but are not limited to:
• Representation on state/local workgroups
• Medicaid Work Requirements
• Unemployment Insurance (UI)
• MDHHS TANF WPR
• Perkins V Executive Committee
Key policy services include:
• Policy analysis
• Facilitating peer-to-peer information exchange
The Michigan Works! Association monitors legislation for movement on key issues impacting workforce
development. We work to educate lawmakers, workforce supporters, and the public on local, state, and
national workforce issues.
MICHIGAN WORKS! ASSOCIATION BOARD OF DIRECTORS LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE
Achieved the following 2019 legislative priorities:
1. Maintain or increase funding for key state workforce programs such as:
(a) ONGOING: Going PRO Talent Fund - secure funding greater than prior year level. *
(b) DONE: BRN - secure Work Project status to roll over funding for use after 9/30/19.
(c) DONE: Maintain investment in PATH program.
(d) ONGOING: Medicaid Work Requirements - secure funding for any programmatic mandates.
2. Provide advice and counsel on the implementation of a state Medicaid work participation program.
3. Continue to be a trusted advisor to the Whitmer administration.
4. Support other workforce policy programs (i.e. childcare, housing, transportation, food, education, healthcare, etc.).
5. Support Michigan Works! Directors in engagement with lawmakers.
6. React to emerging issues from new administration and elsewhere, for example MiLogin.
7. Support and grow Youth Talent programs.
8. Provide advice and counsel in the implementation of a state MI ReConnect program. **
* The work continues with statewide advocacy efforts to restore monies to the FY 2020 state budget for Going PRO Talent Fund.
** Advice and counsel continues to be provided to government official and lawmakers regarding the implementation of a state
MI ReConnect program.
Relationship Building Legislative Committee Policy Issuances
Leading efforts to partner with the Whitmer Strategize on key policy Encourage action at the local level
administration and state & federal leaders priorities through policy communication
Workforce Bills Advocacy Policy Initiatives
Monitor, report and influence Identify opportunities for leadership Build strong relationships to help shape
outcomes on workforce bills to participate in policy change strong, relevant workforce policies
PUBLIC RELATIONS Michigan Business Network Interviews
• Celebrating National Apprenticeship Week with a
The Association is ramping up strategic
communication work by advocating on behalf of our Visit to Germany
membership through opinion pieces, our new • October is National Disability Employment
relationship with the Michigan Business Network, and
the reorganization of the Association’s staff to focus Awareness Month
on deepening our public relations efforts. • Michigan Business Network Blog
• Oakland County Michigan Works! MiCareerQuest
In 2019, we targeted increasing awareness of • Features various news and audio interviews from
Michigan Works! services and bringing attention to
our mission. By successfully pitching targeted the Annual Conference
opinion-editorial pieces, our messages created a
stronger and longer lasting impact. Annual Conference Awards Coverage
• Manistee News-Advocate
Op-Ed: Published June 10, 2019; Bridge; Topic: Guest Commentary Local talent development leader honored by
Strong infrastructure is essential to Michigan’s success Michigan Works! Association
• Huron Daily Tribune
Op-Ed: Published Aug. 4, 2019; The Detroit News Bigelow earns Michigan’s Shining Star Award
Workforce development is delivering results in Michigan • Up North Voice
Bob Balzer is Honored with Shining Star Award
Op-Ed: Published Nov. 2, 2019; The Detroit News • WSYM-FOX 47
Expungement Removes Barriers for Job Seekers Local individuals receive Michigan Works!
Op-Ed: Published Dec. 2019: Marquette Mining Journal
Going PRO Talent Fund (in process) Radio Interviews
• WILS-AM 1320 (Lansing)
National Apprenticeship Week, Workforce
Apprenticeship Trip to Germany
The Association brings together members and partners, allowing local,
state and national leaders to come together and shape the workforce
policies of tomorrow.
From one-on-one meetings to high-level state / federal collaboration,
we maintained a robust meeting agenda in 2019:
• Rosemary Lahasky, Special Assistant to the President
• John Pallasch, Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training
• Sen. Gary Peters (Legislative Assistant, Devin Parsons)
• Sen. Stabenow - Workforce Team
• Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence
• Jake Baker, U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor,
• Ashley Palmer, U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations,
Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, and Education
• Cheryl Vincent, and James Redstone, Office of Economic Initiatives
• Lot Kwarteng and Ani Toumajan, Legislative Assistants,
Workforce and Trade, U.S. Senate
• Kim Meinart and Jason Kanter, Senior Policy Advisors, National
• NASWA - Executive Committee
In-District • Rep. Outman
• Sen. Horn • Rep. Wakeman
• Sen. Stamas • Rep. Whiteford
• Rep. Daley
• Rep. Guerra
• Governor Whitmer (budget)
• House and Senate Appropriations & Policy Leaders
• Lot Kwarteng, Legislative Assistant, U.S. Senate (Directors’ Council)
TRAINING MICHIGAN WORKS!
In 2019, Michigan Works! Association trained MORE
THAN 1,500 PROFESSIONALS across 34 trainings. This annual awards ceremony celebrates the best
These trainings, supported by capacity building funds, examples of workforce success in our communities
improve skills and abilities to handle mission-critical and features workers, employers and partners and
workforce opportunities. their partnership with Michigan Works!.
WE’RE ACCREDITED! We were proud to welcome Governor Whitmer to
speak at the event, just weeks into her administration
Continuing to add value to our educational where she publicly pledged to partner with
offerings is paramount. Michigan Works!.
We’ve completed the arduous application process Additionally, a record number of lawmakers attended
for national accreditation and look forward to the event.
enhancing training in 2020.
• 200+ ATTENDEES
BUSINESS SOLUTIONS PROFESSIONAL • 50+ award winners
(BSP) • 100% membership participation
• ALL LEGISLATORS INVITED, regardless of
This exclusive business engagement training
empowers leaders to uncover resources and make constituent recognition
connections in their communities. • FREQUENT LEGISLATIVE TOUCHPOINTS
Participants learn about a vast array of business and ensure ongoing relationship-building and
economic-related assets and how to deploy them in Michigan Works! brand and service recognition
a way that ensures local leaders can craft business
plans that work. ENGAGEMENT
THIRTY-SIX INDIVIDUALS BECAME NEWLY In order to further explore partnerships,
CERTIFIED IN 2019. opportunities and best practices, Association
leadership and workforce partners from New York,
7 took part in an international knowledge exchange trip
regarding apprenticeships in Germany.
The Michigan Works! Association promotes knowledge among our members by engaging and developing
today’s workforce leaders, through training and events like the Annual Conference and Impact Awards.
MICHIGAN WORKS! ANNUAL CONFERENCE
The Annual Conference ensures mutually beneficial advocacy
opportunities with lawmakers, state administration and key
partners. The event delivers high-quality training and fosters a deep
networking opportunity for attendees at every level within the
Governor Whitmer again showed her continued support for Michigan
Works! during the event, taking extra time to network and have her
photo taken with leaders in workforce, education and business. Jeff
Donofrio, newly appointed director of the Department of Labor and
Economic Opportunity, delivered his vision in an engaging panel of key
Education tracks at every level were among the most highly rated to
date. Networking and engagement laid the foundation for
collaborative and innovative work throughout the year. Workshops and
panels reached beyond workforce issues and survey responses touted
the 2019 conference as the “best ever.”
• 700+ attendees • RECOGNIZED ALL 16
• 50+ sessions MICHIGAN WORKS! AREAS
• 100+ presenters through the Shining Star
• RECORD NUMBER of award presentation
sponsors/exhibitors • CHALLENGE OF
• 80+ workshop submissions EXCELLENCE AWARDS –
• 600+ unique app users; new: Advocate & Collaborator
of the Year awards, presented
nearly 95% of attendees at to Stephanie Beckhorn,
least downloaded the app Director, Workforce Dev, Dept.
or accessed the app website of Labor & Economic
(66% app, 34% website) Opportunity and Rey Guzman,
Talent Dev Liaison, Workforce
Dev, Dept. of Labor & Economic
A well-established, ongoing forum for information
exchange promotes the close relationships needed to
truly drive innovation and prosperity.
Nationally, the Association remains engaged with
influential partners with a focus on securing
appropriations and influencing workforce policy, such
as, but not limited to:
• National Governors Association
• National Association of Workforce Boards
• National Skills Coalition
• National Association of Counties
• U.S. Department of Labor administrative staff
• Other entities interested in workforce
development, Congressional members
At the state level, the Association maintains close
relationships with State of Michigan administrative
staff and key partners, such as, but not limited to:
• Michigan Manufacturing Association
• United Way of Michigan
• Michigan Community College Association
• Michigan League for Public Policy
• Coalition of Michigan Job-Providers and
Workforce Development Professionals (Going
PRO Talent Fund)
The Michigan Works! Association unites members to facilitate progress and acts as a bridge-builder to
elected off icials, partners and key stakeholders for increased collaboration and exposure.
MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS & COMMITTEES MICHIGAN WORKS! / STATE PARTNER
When it comes to economic growth and talent A well-established, ongoing forum for information
development, the involvement of real trailblazers is exchange promotes the close relationships needed to
an essential component. truly drive innovation and prosperity.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS The leadership breakfast brings together staff from
The Board is a mix of private sector leadership and the Governor’s office, State of Michigan and Michigan
public sector representatives who guide the Michigan Works! leadership to talk about up-to-the-minute
Works! Association and enable it to effectively achieve workforce development opportunities.
The Board is committed to holding the Association The committee develops key policy priorities,
and its members accountable to the highest possible monitors progress and ensures member participation
standards in service delivery. in the legislative process and key representation on
The Board ensures effective collaboration with
partners regionally and statewide to deliver the best FINANCE COMMITTEE
outcomes for its customers. The Board and The committee provides financial oversight for the
Association maintain an employer-focused, Association; budgeting, financial planning, financial
demand-driven strategy. reporting and the creation and monitoring of internal
controls and accountability policies
The Association hosts Directors’ Council meetings “Michigan Works! is the one on
twice monthly that provide a forum for great practice the front lines that is really
sharing, strategic policy discussions and connection helping connect people to
to influential partnerships and relevant information. opportunity.”
The Council is focused on demonstrating - GOV GRETCHEN WHITMER,
continuous improvement and results-driven 2019 MICHIGAN WORKS! IMPACT AWARDS
measurements. With consistent attendance by key
state leadership from all departments relevant to
workforce, this forum provides a unique opportunity
for collaboration and coordination.
Michigan Works! Association empowers members with the essential
tools they need to add value to the state’s talent eco-system,
particularly Michigan employers.
We foster relationships through in-person connection centered around
specific topics - six groups meet multiple times a year to connect.
These groups are attended by Association, Michigan Works! and State
of Michigan staff.
In 2019, deep dive topics, like MiCareerQuest, were featured as part of
intensive conversation and best-practice sharing across several Users’
The Association will continue to provide opportunities for this
important connection in 2020 to cultivate in-person relationship
building and expertise-sharing.
Users’ Groups are centered around specific job-related responsibilities
• Management Information Systems (MIS)
• Business Services
• Michigan Works! Service Center Managers
The Association coordinates networking and
communication within vast networks of leaders
in education, workforce, policy, and other key
stakeholders. These relationships are an
important part of the Association’s
commitment to elevate and promote mutually
We are dedicated to providing tools and
resources and a community for networking to
partners at every stage of collaboration—from
partnership formation to strategic alliance
• Employment First • MiSTEM The Association acts as a hub
Workgroup • MiCareerQuest of workforce information and
• NSC Roundtable regularly fields requests from:
• Increase Economic Security • Credential Cohort
Workgroup • MACAE Workforce • Print and broadcast media
• United States Workforce Committee • Employers / Job seekers
Associations • Employment First • State of Michigan
• Other states
• Refugee Navigator Stakeholders • Social media
• Business Leaders for • Business Engagement
Through a variety of methods, the
Michigan Subcommittee Association facilitates and promotes
conversations related to its demand-
Marketing & Social driven system.
Targeted vehicles carry essential messages 12
including Policy Dispatch, eBlasts and
social media, like Twitter, LinkedIn and
VOICE KNOWLEDGE CONNECTION
4 1 6
Op-eds Accreditation Users’
submitted designation Groups
20+ 2 6+
Federal / State Premier events hosted, Regularly scheduled
lawmaker & attended by Gov. Whitmer monthly meetings to support
policy meetings 34 member connection
70+ Trainings 10+
Policy issuances 36 High-level
analyzed and synthesized policy
for member action accredited workgroups
7.5/8 200+ 4,500+
Advocacy priorities achieved Impact Awards Twitter
Annual Conference Facebook
attendees page likes