Duly Noted

Local man named chair of Commission on Services to the Aging
Gov. Rick Snyder has  appointed a current member, Harold Mast, as chair of the Commission on Services to the Aging. The 15-member board advises the governor and legislature on coordination and administration of state programs and changes to federal and state programs related to aging priorities. No more than eight members can be from the same political party.

Harold Mast, of Kentwood, serves as a Kent County Commissioner and is owner and president of Harold Mast Consulting LLC, where he works with the Hispanic Center of West Michigan and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority on affordable housing projects. Previously, he served as executive director for Genesis Non-profit Housing Corp. and held various leadership positions at Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services in Grand Rapids. Mast is a former member and treasurer of the Area Agency on Aging of West Michigan and currently serves as a board member for the Alliance for Health of West Michigan. Mast represents Republicans and will serve a term as chair at the pleasure of the governor.

Nominations sought for award honoring work for families, children

Recognizing outstanding work for Michigan’s children is the goal of the Daniel J. Wright Lifetime Achievement Award. Nominations are now open for this joint award of the Michigan Supreme Court and Michigan Department of Human Services.  The award was established in honor of the late Daniel J. Wright of Grand Ledge, an attorney and longtime leader in child support and child welfare reform. He was credited with the “Michigan Miracle” in 2002 when, as special assistant to then-Chief Justice Maura D. Corrigan, he led the state’s efforts to upgrade Michigan’s child support enforcement system by federally mandated deadlines. By meeting the deadlines, Wright saved the state $142 million in federal fines and earned the state a $36 million refund for fines already paid. Later, Wright helped create the state’s “Adoption Forums” to deal with adoption barriers.

Nominations are open to attorneys, judges, caseworkers, court employees, employees of public and private agencies, employees and members of non-profits, and others with a significant record of helping Michigan families and children. Nominee must have 10 years or more experience in his or her field and a record of achievements with demonstrable impact.

To nominate a candidate, complete the attached form and return it according to the instruction on the form by Sept. 28. The recipient will be honored at the 2012 Michigan Adoption Day event Nov. 20.