The Board of Directors for the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. (DEGC) today announced the selection of Arthur Jemison as president and CEO. Jemison leaves his position as director of housing and revitalization for the City of Detroit, where he’s served since Sept. 2014. He is expected to begin his new role by Dec. 15.
“The DEGC Board oversaw a very thorough and deliberate search process that included local and national candidates with proven success in economic revitalization,” says James Vella, DEGC board chairman and president of the Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “We are thrilled to have someone of Arthur’s caliber to lead a team that already has been accomplishing great things for our city.”
Before coming to Detroit, Jemison served as deputy undersecretary and deputy director for the department of housing and community development in Massachusetts. He has held a variety of public and private sector positions, many related to city planning and urban development, including a role in the Office of Deputy Mayor for Planning and Development in Washington D.C.
Since coming to Detroit, Jemison has made several contributions to the city’s housing transformation, including:
- A three-year collaboration with City Council on a recently passed affordable housing ordinance that requires developers who receive discounted city land or city funding to allocate at least 20 percent of the units in that development as affordable housing units.
- Working with the development community to complete more than 1,400 residential units, including 400 affordable units, since 2015 at approximately a combined $200 million investment.
- Securing an $8.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to drive planning, housing, and public improvements for targeted neighborhoods. The grant funding represented dollars allocated to other cities that went unspent. Because of Detroit’s track record effectively utilizing HUD dollars under Jemison’s leadership, the funding was re-allocated to the city.
“I’m honored to lead the DEGC at such a critical moment,” says Jemison. “Our city is on a trajectory of prosperity and economic leadership fueled by business development.
“DEGC has earned a reputation as a trusted partner, business incubator, revitalization specialist, and resource network. I will continue our focus on creating opportunities for local business owners, entrepreneurs, and residents that allows every Detroiter to be part of the city’s success.”
Jemison is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Massachusetts. He succeeds Glen W. Long Jr., DEGC’s CFO, who served as interim CEO after Rodrick Miller resigned from the position earlier this year. He has since launched a consulting firm.