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About the League Blue Arrows

Board of Trustees 2019-2022

The Michigan Municipal League is supported by a strategic and passionate Board of Trustees who are a critical part of the League's organizational structure. This 18-member Board guides the League's internal workings and public policy with support from five legislative committees.

Learn more about serving as a Trustee and how to apply.



Brenda F. Moore is a life-long resident of the City of Saginaw and currently serves as mayor pro tem. She was born in Saginaw and is a proud graduate of Saginaw High School and Delta College.  Moore understands the value of the family unit and is passionate about helping individuals receive the support and assistance they need to improve their lives.  When elected to city council in 2013, she quickly became involved with the League by attending conferences and training to understand her role as a new official.  Since then, Moore has been elected to serve as the 2nd vice president for the Michigan Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials, and she is the president for the Elected Officials Academy (EOA).  In addition, she has graduated from Level 4 of the EOA.  Moore is currently employed as a bail bonds person and works to assist individuals through the bail bonds process, and serves as an organizer for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU Local 517M).  Moore is also a member of the City County School Liaison Committee and hopes to positively impact Saginaw youth through her position on city council.  Her term expires in 2020.


View all past League Presidents here.

Vice President:
William Wild has served as mayor of the City of Westland since 2007.  Dedicated to forward-thinking policy innovation, he has put Westland, a town of 85,000 residents, on the national map with recognition as one of “America’s top 50 places to live, work and play” by Wall Street 24/7 magazine.  Under Wild’s leadership, the City of Westland has benefited from initiatives like “Westland Mission: Green!” which promotes environmental best practices, the “Compassionate City Program,” a goal to incorporate a friendly and humane lens into community planning and activities, and the “Passport to a Healthy City” program, designed to empower Westland residents to live healthy and fulfilling lives.  An active public servant since 1999, Wild began his service career as a member of Westland’s Planning Commission and in 2001 he began a seven-year tenure as member of the Westland City Council.  He is a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, SEMCOG Economic Development Task Force, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Thai Initiative, a Seattle-based nonprofit that leads the way in creating subnational relationships between the United States and China.  His term expires in 2020.

Michigan Municipal League Trustees


Marlon Brown was first elected to the Mason City Council in 2012 and presently serves as mayor pro tem.  He serves on the Elected Officials Academy Advisory Board as well as several League policy committees including Municipal Services, Municipal Finance, and Land Use and Economic Development.  In addition to his role on the city council, Brown has served as chairperson of the Mason Sesquicentennial Steering Committee, vice chair of the Mason Planning Commission, vice chair of the Mason Historic District Commission, and secretary of the Ingham County Economic Development Corporation board of directors.  He is involved with several community organizations including serving on the board of trustees for the Mason Orchestral Society and formerly serving as treasurer of the Mason Area Chamber of Commerce.  Brown works for the State of Michigan as the Human Services Section Manager in the State Budget Office.  He earned a BS in political science from American University, a master of public administration from the University of Delaware, and is currently pursuing a doctorate in public administration at Valdosta State University.  Moreover, he is an alumnus of the Michigan Political Leadership Program at Michigan State University.  His term expires in 2020.

Michael Cain has served as city manager of Boyne City since 2002.  He has over 35 years of municipal management experience having previously worked for Grand Traverse County, Traverse City, Fenton, Wolverine Lake, Troy, and St. Johns.  Cain has served on various League committees.  He is a member of the International City/County Management Association and the Michigan Municipal Executives where he served on the board and several committees.  He currently serves as the chairperson of the Charlevoix, Cheboygan, and Emmet County 911 Authority and is also on the board of Networks Northwest.  Cain believes in and works hard to removes unnecessary organizational silos while promoting collaboration and cooperation within and between organizations, communities, and people while looking for ways to say yes.  He is the past president and current board member of the Boyne Valley Lions Club and is an Eagle Scout.  Cain received his master’s in Public Administration from MSU.  His term expires in 2021.

Brian Chapman has been serving in local government since 2007 and is the current city manager for the City of Sault Ste. Marie. Prior to coming to the Soo, he was the city manager for the City of Vassar; organization development specialist for the City of Oshkosh, WI; management assistant for the City of Oshkosh, WI; and assistant to the city manager in Negaunee. Chapman has also served as a consultant to numerous communities and counties throughout Wisconsin. His background includes areas as diverse as public works, economic development, public finance, organizational development, process improvement and long-range planning. He is an active member of the International City Managers Association (ICMA), Michigan Municipal Executives (MME), and Strong Towns. Chapman received his bachelor’s and master’s degree in Public Administration from Northern Michigan University. His term expires in 2021.

Peter Dame has more than 25 years of experience as a municipal official.  He has been the city manager for the City of Grosse Pointe since 2006. A native of Portage, MI, Dame graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in History.  He developed his interest in getting things done at the local level while serving as a Congressional aide for his hometown U.S. Representative.  While in the nation’s capital, Dame obtained a master’s degree in Public Administration from George Washington University.  He then worked for the Village of Oak Park, IL for more than 12 years in administration and served on the West Central (Cook County) Municipal Conference Intergovernmental Committee before returning to Michigan.  Dame is a member of the Michigan Municipal Executives (MME) where he had served on its Ethics Committee, the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), and he has served on the Municipal League’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for at least a decade.  His term expires in 2022.

Carla J. Filkins was elected as the first female mayor in the history of the City of Cadillac in 2013.  In addition to her role on the council, she also serves on the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority and the Cadillac Planning Commission.  Born and raised in the Cadillac area, she is involved with several community organizations including the Cadillac Area Women’s Giving Circle, the Cadillac Rotary, the Cadillac Mayor’s Youth Council, the Mayor’s Fit City Challenge, and has many others.  She holds an MBA in Marketing, a Bachelor of Business Leadership, and is a graduate of the Cadillac Leadership program.  She holds certification as a Six Sigma Black Belt in process improvement, and is a recipient of the Athena Leadership Award.  Filkins works for Munson Healthcare as the Director of Regional Materials & Logistics, and this is her 39th year in Northern Michigan’s Healthcare Supply Chain.  Her term expires in 2022.

Monica Galloway has served on the Flint City Council since 2013.  Born and raised in San Diego, CA, she and her Flint-native husband and two sons relocated to Flint in 1995.  As someone who is passionate about the community and the wellbeing of its residents, Galloway made the decision to run for the 7th Ward Flint City Council seat in 2013.  The success of this election made her the first African American and female to hold this position.  In 2015, under Emergency Manager Order, all council members were required to complete Level One of the League’s Elected Officials Academy (EOA).  That Emergency Managers Order opened up learning and networking opportunities that have given her the confidence to better serve the citizens in Flint.  She has completed three levels of the EOA and is working on her fourth and final level.  Galloway is a SaveMICity Ambassador, and currently serves as Flint City Council’s Vice President and Finance Chair.  Her term expires in 2022.

Stephen J. Gawron was elected mayor of Muskegon in November 2013 and has served on the Muskegon City Commission since 2001. He was appointed vice mayor in 2005 and held that position until the incumbent mayor resigned in 2013. Since serving on the city commission, Gawron has provided the progressive leadership needed as the city and the entire Muskegon community moves through a historic transformation of growth and revival.  He recognizes that advanced manufacturing is critical to the city as investment and employment continue to expand with a high level of collaboration with the private sector. Gawron has taken his local engagement to the state level with participation in the Urban Core Mayors Association of Michigan. He is a graduate of Central Michigan University and a 33-year veteran of the Michigan Department of Corrections as a pre-sentence investigator. His term expires in 2020.

Brian Hartwell has served as mayor of Madison Heights since 2015, and he previously served on city council from 2007 to 2015.  In early 2019, he accepted a full-time position as the deputy county treasurer for community outreach and communications with the Oakland County Treasurer’s Office.  During his time as mayor, Hartwell has guided record-setting economic development due to his leadership in creating a 20-year downtown development plan, embracing new industries, and streamlining bureaucracy.  As the mayor of one of Michigan’s most diverse cities, he is very active in the Asian-American community thanks to the 200 locally owned Asian businesses.  Hartwell has been a licensed attorney since 2008, donating his time to low-income seniors in a pro bono clinic he created at the Madison Heights Active Adult Center.  He is an ambassador for the American Cancer Society’s program “Real Men Wear Pink” where he works with firefighters to raise money and awareness for cancer research.  He earned a bachelor’s degree in international & comparative political science and economics from Western Michigan University, and lived in Paris, France earning two language certificates from La Sorbonne.  His term expires in 2022.

Brenda Jones has served as Detroit City Council President since 2014.  She began her career in public service with election to council in November 2005.  Jones began service as council’s liaison to the Police & Fire Pension Board in 2010, and was appointed by state law to the Detroit Financial Review Commission in 2014.  She is the chairperson of both the city’s Skilled Trades and Military Veterans Task Forces, serves as the 1st Vice President of the A. Phillip Randolph Institute, and sits on boards for the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, and Detroit Transportation Commission (the People Mover).  Jones was recently appointed vice chairperson, 2017-2018 SEMCOG General Assembly, as well as serving on the Executive Committee.  She has a B.A. in psychology from Wayne State University, completed Wayne State University’s Labor Studies Program, and is the only council member to have completed the Detroit Police Department’s Citizen’s Police Academy.  Jones works tirelessly to address issues that impact the quality of life in Detroit and she continues to be an advocate for transparency in government, community engagement, positive change, a voice for the voiceless, and a driver of hope for a better Detroit.  Her term expires in 2020.

Robert La Fave serves as the village manager for the Village of L'Anse.  In his 11 years of service to the community, he has worked with multiple community stakeholders (Village Council, DDA, Chamber of Commerce, Baraga County EDC, Planning Commission, and citizen groups) to engage in placemaking and downtown revitalization efforts to improve the quality of life of local residents and to help make the community more attractive to visitors and business alike.  La Fave has served on the Michigan Municipal Executives board, MSU Extension Statewide Board, is currently on the Baraga County EDC, and various other community boards.  He holds a Master of Public Administration from Grand Valley State University, holds a Citizen Planner Certification from MSU Extension, and is currently a PhD. student in Michigan Technological University's Environmental and Energy Policy Program.  His term expires in 2020.

Frances McMullan has over 25 years of experience in municipal government, serving in multiple capacities at the cities of Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti; including 12 years as city clerk. She is the first African-American female city manager for the City of Ypsilanti. McMullan serves as chaplain for the Michigan Municipal League Black Caucus and is a board member of Destination Ann Arbor, a not-for-profit convention and visitors organization whose mission is to enhance the economy of the Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti areas and Washtenaw County. She is passionate about rebuilding and stabilizing cities through long-term financial planning, infrastructure, sustainability, and community and staff collaboration. McMullan has a master’s degree in business management, a bachelor’s degree in public law and government/public administration, and she is a proud graduate of the first class of the Michigan Municipal League’s 16/50 Women’s Leadership Program. She loves mentoring and empowering others. Her term expires in 2021.


Jean Stegeman has more than a decade of public service and is currently serving her second term as mayor in the City of Menominee. She was a member of and served as chair of the Menominee planning commission for several years prior to becoming mayor. She’s on her second term as a member of the League’s Liability and Property Pool board of directors. She is active in several local civic organizations.  Her term expires in 2021.

Patrick Sullivan has been the city manager of the City of Northville since 2006.  Before coming to Northville, he was the city superintendent in St. Clair for 10 years and the assistant city manager/village clerk in the Village of Beverly Hills for five years.  Sullivan has a bachelor’s degree in Public Affairs from Wayne State University and a master’s in public administration from Oakland University.  He has been a member of the League’s Finance Committee, the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), and the Michigan Municipal Executives (MME) where he served on the board of directors and as its president in 2018.  His term expires in 2022.

Keith Van Beek currently serves as city manager for the City of Holland. His experience in public administration is extensive. He previously served as the deputy county administrator for the County of Ottawa, and as the city administrator for the City of Kentwood for 12 years.  Throughout his career, Van Beek has been highly involved in professional associations. He is a credentialed manager in the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), past president and former board member of the Michigan Municipal Executives and the West Michigan Municipal Executives; and a member of the Michigan Association of County Administrative officials. He has served a number of community organizations and agencies, including as the chairperson of Community SPOKE, an alliance of the Lakeshore Nonprofit Alliance and Ottawa County Human Services Coordinating Council, and he is the current treasurer of the Greater Ottawa County United Way.  Van Beek is a graduate of Holland Christian High School, Calvin College, and has a Master of Public Administration from Grand Valley State University. His term expires in 2020.

Dr. Deirdre Waterman was elected mayor of Pontiac in 2013, becoming the first woman to be elected to the position; she was re-elected in November 2017.  An ophthalmologist by profession, Dr. Waterman is a longtime business owner and operated her practice, Holloway Eye Care, in Pontiac for more than 30 years. She was the first African-American female ophthalmologist in the state of Michigan. She is a graduate of the University of Chicago, with a degree in Biology and Political Science, as well as Meherry Medical College.  She completed her residency at the Kresge Eye Institute at Wayne State. Dr. Waterman was recently awarded the 2017 Crain’s Newsmaker of the Year Award. She also served as chairman of the National Medical Association, Region IV, as well as two terms as finance chair for that organization. She was president of the Associated Healthcare Providers and is listed in the first Education of Vital Signs: Michigan, citing African-American achievement in healthcare. Her term expires in 2021.

Diane Brown Wilhelm has been a tireless public servant, sitting on the Midland city council and planning commission for more than 10 combined years. She is a senior manager executive for Accenture and Midland city council’s legislative director. Wilhelm holds leadership roles with Midland’s Shelterhouse, Midland Community Family Ministries, and the League of Women Voters, while also serving as Accenture Global Employee Engagement Lead & Project People Advocate.  These and many other community service roles allow Wilhelm to employ the strengths she has developed in the professional world for the benefit of her community.  Her term expires in 2021.

Barbara A. Ziarko has been a Sterling Heights resident for the last 42 years and an active member of the Sterling Heights City Council since 2001.  She holds an associate degree from Macomb Community College and is a retiree after 27 years combined working experience as an administrative assistant to the principal of St. Anne School in Warren and as a bookkeeper for St. Blasé Church in Sterling Heights.  She has been active in the community having served as a volunteer at Pope Francis Center in Detroit, a Friend of the Sterling Heights Library, a member of the American Polish Century Club Ladies Auxiliary, vice president of Regina High School board of directors for seven years, and a coordinator for bible school, MCREST, and Relay for Life.  She also takes every opportunity to immerse herself in the city by actively participating in programs such as the civilian police and fire academies and Sterling Heights Community Emergency Response Team (CERT).  Her term expires in 2022.

League Executive Director and CEO

Dan GilmartinDan Gilmartin is the executive director and CEO of the Michigan Municipal League.  Through his work with communities, Dan is recognized as a national leader in the fields of urban revitalization, placemaking, local government reform, and transportation policy.

Under Dan’s leadership, the League powers innovative programs and practices that improve communities in Michigan and beyond. He is a frequent national and international speaker. In recent years, he has given presentations internationally including in China, Sweden, Australia, and Denmark, and across the nation—from Los Angeles to D.C. to Vermont. In 2018, Dan gave highly publicized testimony before a U.S. Congress Senate Committee on behalf of local governments nationwide regarding state and local transportation infrastructure needs.

Dan is frequently quoted in state and national publications on community-related topics.  He has also authored numerous opinion columns that have appeared in statewide publications, including the Detroit News, Crain’s Detroit Business,, and Bridge Magazine.

In 2018, Dan added podcast host to his resume on the Economics of Place podcast, part of the League’s We Love Where You Live podcast series. He is a frequent blogger and a contributing author to the books The Economics of Place: The Value of Building Communities Around People and the follow-up Economics of Place: The Art of Building Great Communities.

He is actively engaged in the National League of Cities and previously served on the NLC’s board of directors.  In 2018, he was selected to the NLC’s National Task Force on Housing and in 2015 was a member of NLC’s President Election Task Force.

Prior to his current position, Dan served for four years as the lead advocate for Michigan’s communities in Lansing and Washington, D.C., where he concentrated on a number of key issues including transportation, land use, and urban redevelopment.

Dan is a Michigan kid, a Detroit native (and booster), and currently resides in the historic downtown of Northville, Michigan with his wife, Lori, and two young sons.

Dan's blog: Economics of Place



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