Voters to decide candidates, state proposals, local charter amendments

Royal Oak Review | Published October 24, 2018

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In the Royal Oak Review’s coverage area, voters will choose candidates and decide three state proposals and four local charter amendments in Royal Oak and Clawson. 

Candidates were asked, in 75 words or fewer, to state their top goal(s) if elected. If a candidate went over the limit, (…) replaces the rest of the answer. (I) indicates the candidate is an incumbent. The answers are printed verbatim except where material is omitted due to personal attacks or items we know to be false or that are blatant misrepresentations.

Profiles were not sent to candidates running unopposed, which includes the candidates for school boards in Clawson and Royal Oak.

 

Governor 
Six candidates are running for one four-year term.


Republican 
Bill Schuette

Age: 64 

Occupation: Attorney General, conservative candidate for governor  

Municipality of residence: Midland

For how long: Since he was a child

Online campaign information: No answer given  

Education: Georgetown University and University of San Francisco Law School 

Previously held elected offices: He has served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and Michigan Senate, and as a Judge on the Michigan Court of Appeals. 

Top goals: As Michigan’s next governor, I will make Michigan win again. We will grow our paychecks and population. We will accomplish this by finally cutting auto insurance rates (currently the highest in America), improve low-ranking 3rd grade reading scores, increase vocational training for skilled trade careers, and drive a stake through the Granholm Income Tax hike, which has cost Michigan families $8 billion.

 

Democrat 
Gretchen Whitmer

Age: 46 

Occupation: Candidate for Governor

Municipality of residence: East Lansing, MI

For how long: 20+ Years

Online campaign information: gretchenwhitmer.com

Education: Michigan State University, College of Law, Magna Cum Laude 

Michigan State University, BA Communications

Previously held elected offices: Senate Democratic Leader, 2010 - 2014; Michigan State Senate, 2006 - 2014; Michigan State Representative, 2000 - 2006

Top goals: 

Fix our roads the right way, the first time, with high-quality materials and mix so we can get the job done right. 

Make sure every Michigander has a quality public education that gets them on a path to a high wage skill.

Make health care more affordable. As Senate Democratic Leader, I negotiated with Republicans to expand health care to more than 680,000 Michiganders. As governor, I’ll take on Republicans who threaten our care.

 

Libertarian
Bill Gelineau

Age: 58

Occupation: Title Agent

Municipality of residence: Lowell

For how long: No answer given

Online campaign information: http://cometogethermichigan.org

Education: Wayne State

Previously held elected offices: No answer given

Top goals: Our goal is to destroy the system that only allows 2 voices (D’s and R’s) to dominate the political structures of the state. Our plan is to implement Ranked Choice Voting (see: FairVote.org).

By reducing expenditures on prisons and crony capitalism, we have the money to fix roads, make prudent investments in school counselors, and restructure school districts.

We’re the best hope to give Michigan another choice and foster sensible solutions. www. ComeTogetherMichigan.org

 

U.S. Taxpayers
Todd Schleiger 

Age: 52

Occupation: Transportation Specialist

Municipality of residence: Lake Orion

For how long: 7 years

Online campaign information: checktodd.com

Education: High School and some online Business Courses

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: My Top goals to reform and better our schools, lower auto insurance by up to 70%, Lower Health insurance cost by up to 50%, actually fix our roads and infrastructure without raising our taxes.

 

Natural Law
Keith Butkovich

Age: 34

Occupation: Retail management

Municipality of residence: Wayne

For how long: 11 years

Online campaign information: www.facebook.com/butkovichforgovernor

Education: HS Diploma, Lamphere High School, Madison Heights

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: Reduce car insurance rates, eliminate income tax, more freedom and less government.

 

Green
Jennifer V. Kurland

Age: 37 

Occupation: N/A

Municipality of residence: Redford Twp

For how long: 13 years

Online campaign information: www.kurland4michigan.com

Education: Associate’s Degree – Liberal Arts – Schoolcraft College

Bachelor’s Degree – Political Science Public Affairs – Wayne State University

Previously held elected offices: Redford Union School Board Trustee – elected 2012 to 2013 – 2018 term, served as President for 3 1/2 years, currently Treasurer

Top goals: My top goals are to make the people of Michigan’s lives better, more prosperous, and pollution free.  Addressing the statewide crisis of lead poisoning in children, growing issues with PFAs, and begin charging the true cost of doing business to corporate polluters.  We can put Michiganders to work with good, green jobs of the future in trades and by taking further advantage of the new businesses that growing industrial hemp will bring to our state.


Secretary of State 
Four candidates are running for one four-year term. 


Republican
Mary Treder Lang

Age: 58

Occupation: VP of Major Gifts at Vista Maria (On a leave of absence)

Municipality of residence: Grosse Pointe Farms

For how long: 27 and the previous 31 years in Grosse Pointe Woods

Online campaign information: marytrederlangforsos.com

Education: B.S. in both Accounting and Marketing from the University of Dayton

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: My top goals if elected are to improve our branch offices by increasing online services, introducing an ExpressSOS app for smart phones, expanding MI-Time, and providing self-service kiosks in Michigan based-businesses across the state.

I also want to increase elections training for clerks and poll workers along with recruiting additional poll workers to help with understaffed precincts on Election Day. I will forge partnerships with Secretaries of States nationally to learn best practices.
 

Democrat
Jocelyn Benson

Age: 41

Occupation: CEO & President, Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE) 

Municipality of residence: Detroit, Michigan

For how long: 14 years

Online campaign information: www.votebenson.com 

Education: Wellesley College, B.A., Harvard Law School, J.D., Oxford University (UK), M.Phil.

Previously held elected offices: Wellesley Town Meeting, Wellesley, MA

Top goals: I am running for Secretary of State to save people time, save them money, and protect their voice and their vote.  As Michigan’s chief elections officer I will work to make it easier to vote and harder to cheat.  The priorities I will fight for are a 30-Minute Guarantee for services; a ban on fee increases; secure elections, protecting the sacred right to vote; and taking Michigan from worst to first in transparency and ethics.

Libertarian
Gregory Scott Stempfle

Libertarian

Gregory Scott Stempfle
Photo

Age: 41

Occupation: Medical Technologist

Municipality of residence: Ferndale

For how long: 8 years

Online campaign information: www.stempfle4sos.com

Education:  BS Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Wayne State (2008), MS Molecular Biology, Wayne State (2015)

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: The most important responsibility of the Secretary of State is to guarantee the fair administration of elections. To that end I will be a strong supporter of expanding voting rights and making the registration and voting process easier and I will advocate for election reforms that will make our elected officials more representative of the voting public and expand the inclusion of independent and third party candidates.

 

U.S. Taxpayers
Robert Gale
Did not return questionnaire by press time. 


Attorney General
Five candidates are running for one four-year term.

Republican
Tom Leonard

Age: 37

Occupation: Speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives

Municipality of residence: DeWitt, MI

For how long: 11 years

Online campaign information: LeonardForAG.com

Education: BA, University of Michigan; JD, Michigan State University

Previously held elected offices: State Representative, 2013-2018

Top goals: I have spent my entire career making Michigan safer and stronger, and that will be my top priority as Michigan’s next attorney general. I have a detailed plan ready to go to put a stronger focus on fighting violent crime, rooting out sexual predators and continuing to reform Michigan’s broken mental health system. And with experience as a prosecutor and an assistant attorney general, I have the right experience to put it into action.

 

Democrat
Dana Nessel

Age: 49

Occupation: President, Fair Michigan Foundation

Municipality of residence: Plymouth

For how long: 10+ years

Online campaign information: dana2018.com

Education: BA, University of Michigan. JD, Wayne State University. 

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: “As I see it, the role of Attorney General is to be the last legal line of defense in protecting Michigan citizens from abuses by predatory actors. Unfortunately, our current Attorney General can and should be counted as one of those bad actors, in addition to our current President. My top priorities in office will be centered around returning the office of Attorney General to what it was always intended to be, the people’s attorney. “

 

Libertarian
Lisa Lane Gioia

Age: 50

Occupation: small business owner

Municipality of residence: West Bloomfield

For how long: 15 years

Online campaign information: lisaforliberty.com

Education: Bachelor of Arts with Distinction, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals:

(1) Should the cannabis proposal pass, ensuring a smooth transition to new laws, including promoting the release of all persons incarcerated for non-violent, marijuana-related crimes.

(2) Thorough review of all cases currently before the Office of the AG to ensure they have been handled properly in protecting individual freedoms and providing restitution to victims.

(3) Eliminating civil asset forfeiture.

(4) Monitoring and prosecuting injustices/abuses perpetrated by government and law enforcement officials.

 

U.S. Taxpayers
Gerald T. Van Sickle
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

 

No party affiliation
Chris Graveline

Age: 45

Occupation: Attorney (most recent position: Chief, Violent & Organized Crime Unit, U.S. Attorney’s Office – Eastern District of Michigan)

Municipality of residence: Berkley

For how long: 9 years

Online campaign information: cgforag.com

Education: MA — International Affairs, Catholic University of America; JD — University of New Hampshire Law School; BA — Liberal Arts, Magdalen College

Previously held elected offices: Board of Parks & Recreation (non-partisan) — Town of Warner, NH (during law school)

Top goals: My top goal is to remove partisan political considerations from the Attorney General’s office. Both political parties have targeted the attorney general positions nationwide as a means to advance their policy arguments through lawsuit. This practice must end. Instead, I would focus the office’s resources on helping our cities and municipalities in curbing violent crime, the opioid trade, human trafficking, and identity theft. Additionally, I would shift resources to aggressively pursue consumer protection enforcement.


U.S. Senate
Five candidate are running for one six-year term.

 

Republican
John James

Age: 37

Occupation: President, James Group International

Municipality of residence: Farmington Hills, MI

For how long: 8 Years

Online campaign information: JohnJamesForSenate.com

Education:

United States Military Academy: Bachelor of Science

Penn State University: Master of Supply Chain Management and Information Systems

University of Michigan: Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.)

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: I have a passion for service. My core values are: Faith and Family, God and Country and Service before Self. My goal as a Senator is bringing economic opportunity back to Michigan and getting help to the 22 veterans that commit suicide each day. From the battlefield to the boardroom, I have served my country and my community my entire life, and I am running for Senate to protect the American Dream for future generations.

 

Democrat
Debbie Stabenow (I)

Age: 68

Occupation: U.S. Senator

Municipality of residence: Lansing

For how long: Adulthood

Online campaign information: www.debbiestabenow.com

Education: Michigan State University - B.A. and M.S.W.

Previously held elected offices:

-United States Senator 

-United States Representative for Michigan’s 8th Congressional District

-State Senator in Michigan Senate

-State Representative in Michigan House of Representatives 

-Commissioner and Chair, Ingham County Board of Commissioners

Top goals: I am a champion for Michigan’s economy and good jobs. That’s why I focus on growing a diverse economy in Michigan that includes manufacturing, technology, small business creation, agriculture, education and career training. I am also focused on lowering costs for families, whether it’s the cost of college, health insurance or prescription drugs. Every day, I suit up for Michigan and fight for our families and way of life.

 

U.S. Taxpayers
George E. Huffman III
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

 

Green
Marcia Squier

Age: 43

Occupation: Exercise/Fitness Instructor.

Municipality of residence: Saint Clair Shores

For how long: Saint Clair Shores resident for 8 years. Currently moving to Sterling Heights. Lifelong Michigan (Metro Detroit Area)

Online campaign information: marciasquier.com

Education: Fraser Public Schools- Top10 in Class of 1993 (4.07 GPA)

Wayne State University- Bachelor of Science Degree with Major in Psychology on a full academic scholarship and partial athletic scholarship (3.58 GPA). Lifetime Member of Golden Key National Honor Society.

Previously held elected offices: None 

Top goals: #HIRE Jobs Program (Healthcare, Infrastructure, Renewables and Education). Retroactive Cannabis and Hemp Legalization. End War on Drugs altogether. Healthcare and Education for All (PreK-PhD/Skilled Trades). Bring Our Troops home and End the Never-ending War on Terror/Interventionistic Regime Change Wars. Eliminate megacorporations’ chokehold on governmental policies and officials. Tax reform that favors the Individual and Small Businesses. Hand-counted Paper Ballots with Citizen Oversight (NOT Machine-counted with Government Oversight).

 

Natural Law
John Howard Wilhelm

Age: 79

Occupation: Retired Economist

Municipality of residence: Ann Arbor, MI

For how long: Since 1961

Online campaign information: www.nationalrenewalparty.org

Education: Ph.D. Economics, University of Michigan, 1974

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: To have the visibility, ties and resources to push for voting reform at the federal level to open up our political processes to credible third parties and to use that to push for better policy discussions in light of the Club of Rome projections, impending peak oil, populations sustainability and the issue of immigration. Also to push for reform of our intelligence operations, and foreign policy concerning Russia and the Middle East. See my website.


U.S. House of Representatives District 9
Four candidates are running for one two-year term.


Republican
Candius Stearns

Age: 46

Occupation: Insurance agency business owner / President DFBenefits Inc and DFB TPA Services LLC

Municipality of residence: Sterling Heights Michigan

For how long: since 1999

Online campaign information: www.candiusforcongress.com

Education: Associates in Liberal Arts from Macomb Community College, Registered Health Underwriter from The American College

Previously held elected offices: Precinct Delegate

Top goals: I firmly believe this election is not about Republicans or Democrats. It also isn’t about me or my opponent. It is about ALL OF US and making sure we work together to help Michigan thrive. My top three goals once elected are building economic opportunity, supporting national security and, lowering the cost of prescriptions and medical care. I’ve built relationships helping others in Michigan my entire life. I’ll be the voice for the people’s seat.

 

Democrat
Andy Levin

Age: 58

Occupation: Founder & Managing Partner of Levin Energy Partners, a public-private partnership for clean energy strategies

Municipality of residence: Bloomfield Township

For how long: 12 years

Online campaign information: andylevinforcongress.com

Education: Harvard Law School, J.D.; University of Michigan, M.A.; Williams College, B.A.

Previously held elected offices: No answer given

Top goals: I’m running for the 9th Congressional District to be a champion for working families in Washington. Too many of our jobs have been shipped overseas, privatized, and made part-time or temporary. We need to restore the middle class, and we can do that by fighting for good-paying jobs with benefits, quality public schools, debt-free higher education, job retraining programs, and universal affordable health coverage.

 

Green
John V. McDermott

Age: 56

Occupation: Document Review Attorney.

Municipality of residence: Hazel Park.

For how long: 3 years.

Online campaign information: https://electjohnvmcdermott.com

Education: B.A. Accounting, MSU 1986, J.D. Univ. Detroit-Mercy, 1994

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: Priorities: 1) Peace, 2) Economic Justice, 3) Legal Justice. We need to end the seventeen years of pointless wars in ME by rescinding 2001 and 2002 AUMF’s and withdrawing troops. We need to restore Economic Justice and more equal economic opportunity. We need to restore faith in law enforcement through full reform.

 

Working Class
Andrea Kirby
Did not return questionnaire by press time.


U.S. House of Representatives District 11
Four candidates are running for one two-year term.


Republican
Lena Epstein 

Age: 37

Occupation: Co-Owner of Vesco

Municipality of residence: Bloomfield Hills

For how long: No answer given

Online campaign information: LenaforCongress.com

Education: Bachelor’s in Economics from Harvard University; MBA from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.

Previously held elected offices: none

Top goals: We need to come together to pass common sense legislation to fix our nation’s problems. I will work across the aisle to pass bipartisan legislation to lower the cost of healthcare while improving the quality and care we all deserve, including those with pre-existing conditions. We need to continue to grow and strengthen our economy and work towards better jobs and lower taxes.

 

Democrat
Haley Stevens 

Age: 35

Occupation: Chief of Staff, U.S. Auto Rescue

Municipality of residence: Rochester Hills, MI

For how long: Two years

Online campaign information: HaleyStevens ForCongress.com

Education: B.A., American University. M.A., American University.

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: I’m running to lower healthcare costs, fix our roads, and ensure that our students get a world-class education from teachers who are paid what they’re worth. I’m also running to shine a light on our regional economy here and create new opportunities in the advanced manufacturing sector right here in southeast Michigan. I’m also running to make Washington work for Michigan and bring federal resources back into the 11th District.

 

Libertarian
Leonard Schwartz

Age: 73

Occupation: Retired professor of business law and economics

Municipality of residence: Oak Park

For how long: 26 years

Online campaign information: www.LeonardSchwartz.us

Education: BA, University of Chicago; MA, Johns Hopkins University: JD, Wayne Stae U. Law School

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals:

(1) End the war on herbal medicine, thereby reducing the opioid problem.

(2) Repeal civil asset forfeiture laws, which allow the government to confiscate your property without even accusing you of committing a crime.

(3) Oppose foreign quagmires and trade wars.

 

Non-Partisan Association 
Cooper Nye

Age: 26 

Occupation: Political Reformer

Municipality of residence: Commerce

For how long: 23 years

Online campaign information: www.CoopforCongress.com

Education: B.A. in Political Theory from Michigan State University

Previously held elected offices: N/A

Top goals: My priority is fixing our rigged system because Congress should serve citizens, not special interests. I propose the American Anti-Corruption Act to stop bribery by lobbyists, block politicians from fundraising during working hours, close the revolving door, and outlaw secret money; the Fair Representation Act to give voters more choices and elect several winners reflecting the views of all constituents; and a comprehensive federal audit to eliminate waste, fraud, and corruption across all departments.


State Senate District 13
Two candidates are running for one four-year term. 


Republican
Marty Knollenberg (I)

Age: 55

Occupation: Owner, Sedona Taphouse; Owner, Knollenberg Insurance Agency

Municipality of residence: Oakland County

For how long: 50 Years

Online campaign information: www.Marty Knollenberg.com

Education: Albion College, B.A. in History

Previously held elected offices: Oakland County, Commissioner State, Representative State Senator

Top goals: Education: As vice chair of the Education Committee I helped increase Michigan’s investment in education by $2.8 billion. Every child has potential, and I support policies to help them reach their potential.

Infrastructure: This year we’re investing $800 million more into roads. Republicans and Democrats need to work together and compromise to provide more funding. 

Auto Insurance Rates: I’ve introduced legislation to lower auto insurance rates that would help rein in skyrocketing medical costs.

 

Democrat
Mallory McMorrow

Age: 32

Occupation: Small Business Owner (Ginger Haus - Creative Consultancy) / Creative Director & Industrial Designer

Municipality of residence: Royal Oak

For how long: 3 years

Online campaign information: www.mcmorrowformichigan.com

Education: Bachelor of Arts, Industrial Design – University of Notre Dame

Previously held elected offices: NA

Top goals: Clean water and protected environment: Michigan should lead the nation in clean water, energy and sustainable manufacturing. We’re the Great Lakes State. It’s economically advantageous and necessary to protect residents’ health. Supporting education and great teachers: Reversing the teacher shortage and empowering teachers with resources/support staff in & out of the classroom.

Supporting women and families: Closing the pay gap, supporting paid family leave, Universal Early Education, affordable health care, and lower prescription drug costs.


State House of Representatives District 26
Two candidates are running for one two-year term.


Republican
Al Gui

Age: 54

Occupation: Mathematics instructor

Municipality of residence: Madison Heights

For how long: Moved in for the first time in  2003

Online campaign information: www.algui2018.com

Education: Masters’ degree, major mathematics; Master’s degree Education leadership, major school administration,; Bachelor’s degree, major pure mathematics

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: No pension tax. No more tax on gas. Fix the roads now, transparently. No more “Flint ”, Emergency managers should be assessed by the House and the Senate. Repeal No –fault auto insurance, people should be free to choose. Waive court late fees and penalties.

Education: full-time skilled trades high schools, get rid of common core, raise the standards. Expunge student loan debt.

Investigate those outrageously high emergency room medical bills. Reduce property tax. 

 

Democrat
Jim Ellison (I)

Age: 66

Occupation: State Representative

Municipality of residence: City of Royal Oak

For how long: Lifelong resident of 66 years.

Online campaign information: www.Jim4MI.com

Education: Graduate of Royal Oak High School

Previously held elected offices:

Royal Oak City Commissioner, 1991-1993 (1 Term)

Mayor of Royal Oak, 2003-2016 (6.5 Terms)

State Representative, 2016-Present (1 Term)

Top goals:

1. Fixing our crumbling roads, bridges and underground infrastructure.

2. Putting an end to the $4.85 billion raid on classroom funding and invest in universal preschool, career technical education and make sure every teacher has the resources and support staff they need to help our children realize their fullest potential.

3. Protecting Michigan’s vast waters, natural resources and majestic Great Lakes.

4. Making college and vocation training affordable for all students and families.


State House of Representatives District 41
Two candidates are running for one two-year term. 


Republican
Doug Tietz

Age: 37

Occupation: Owner of a Marketing Firm

Municipality of residence: Troy

For how long: 11 years

Online campaign information: www.VoteDougTietz.com

Education: University of Michigan graduate

Previously held elected offices: Troy City Councilman (2011-2015); Oakland County Commissioner (2016-Present)

Top goals: Roads: We need to prioritize spending to fix our roads in the budget, enough excuses.

Car Insurance: Let’s root out fraud and over-billing, and stop trial lawyers from profiting at taxpayers’ expense.

Affordable Health Insurance: Soaring premiums, long waits. Politicians have screwed up our healthcare. It’s time we have affordable patient focused options.

Spending and Taxes: Fiscal restraint and responsibility. It’s time to stop the cycle of government over spending and tax increases.

 

Democrat
Padma Kuppa

Age: 53

Occupation: Engineer and Information Technology Professional

Municipality of residence: Troy 

For how long: Over 20 years

Online campaign information: www.electpadmakuppa.com

Education: Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: Padma’s top priorities are protecting our public schools, since good education is foundational to a strong economy; ensuring we have clean, safe drinking water; making sure healthcare covers pre-existing conditions; preserving our natural resources - from green space to the Great Lakes; and improving our infrastructure, starting with our roads. A mom, engineer and civic leader, she will use her professional skills and community building experience to fight for issues important to all of us.


Oakland County Board of Commissioners District 16 
Two candidates are running for one two-year term. 


Republican 
Wade Fleming (I)

Age: 66

Occupation: Retired

Municipality of residence: Troy

For how long: 36 years

Online campaign information: facebook @voteforfleming

Education: No answer given

Previously held elected offices: Troy City Council (9) years including (2) years as Mayor Pro-Tem — Also elected Precinct Delegate

Top goals: Road Improvements: Continue to work to improve the quality, timing and efficiency of our road construction. The Commission has tripled the amount of funds available to assist local governments, bringing back thousands of road repair dollars to the county. We must spend our dollars wisely, prioritizing existing infrastructure before building new roads.

Safe Communities: Do more to prevent crimes in our neighborhoods and ensure the safety of EVERY child in our schools through collaborative efforts (...)

 

Democrat 
Penny Luebs

Age: 64

Occupation: Clinical Supervisor, Easter Seals

Municipality of residence: Clawson

For how long: 38 years

Online campaign information: Facebook – Penny Luebs for Oakland County Commissioner

Education: Master’s Degree in Social Work

Previously held elected offices: Mayor, City of Clawson 2007-2017, Council, City of Clawson 2003 - 2007

Top goals: Maintain and upgrade infrastructure, restore trust in local government, maintain safe cities


Oakland County Board of Commissioners District 19
Two candidates are running for one two-year term.


Republican
Michael Ryan

Age: 58

Occupation: Dentist

Municipality of residence: Berkley

For how long: 19 years

Online campaign information: Ryan4Oakcom.com

Education: D.D.S. from Univ of Mich

Previously held elected offices: No previously held elected offices

Top goals: My goal is to make Oakland county an even better example of government by getting the people’s input . First, with asset seizures, I want a majority of six jurors to certify the seizure is reasonably related to the crime. Second, with county employees’ health benefits, small groups of them will decide what medical services should not have deductibles and other services covered at a lesser percentage than standard. Both should serve as examples to others.

 

Democrat
Dave Woodward (I)

Age: 42

Occupation: County commissioner, small business owner

Municipality of residence: Royal Oak

For how long: 40 years

Online campaign information: No answer given

Education: B.S. Mathematics — Wayne State University

Previously held elected offices: State Representative

Top goals: I’ll remain a strong voice for progressive change. 

Better Roads: I secured millions in county funding for our LOCAL roads. I’ll fight for more funding and strictly enforce truck weight limits. 

Safer Water: I developed county plan to replace school water fountains with models that filter out lead and other contaminants. I’ll work to fund water testing for schools, childcare facilities, and senior centers. 

Opportunity for Working Families: Increase wages and benefits for all workers.


Oakland County Board of Commissioners District 20
Two candidates are running for one two-year term. 


Republican
Chris Adams
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

 

Democrat 
Gary McGillivray (I)

Age: 66

Occupation: County commissioner and real estate sales agent (ReMax in the Park)

Municipality of residence: Madison Heights 

For how long: No answer given

Online campaign information: votemcgillivray.com 

Education: Dondero High School and Oakland Community College (law enforcement)

Previously held elected offices: Madison Heights City Council and Mayor, 1983-2008; Oakland County Commissioner, 2009 to present.

Top goals: My first goal is to represent my district by spending their tax dollars wisely and trying to provide services available from Oakland County to the cities, residents and businesses in my district. Help cities and villages throughout Oakland County with funding of Local Roads. Oakland County Road Commission does not contribute to local roads. Oakland County needs to help improving local roads. I’m trying to provide more recreation programing in southeast Oakland County. 


Michigan Supreme Court
Six candidates are running for two eight-year terms.

Samuel Bagenstos

Age: 48

Occupation: Law Professor and Civil Rights Attorney

Municipality of residence: Ann Arbor

For how long: 7 years

Online campaign information: http://www.BagenstosForJustice.com

Education: BA, University of North Carolina; JD, Harvard Law School

Previously held elected offices: N/A

Top goals: My principal goal is to ensure that the courts are there to step in and protect the people’s rights when the other branches of government are effectively closed to them. My career shows my commitment to helping amplify the voices of those whose rights have been violated. I have fought in court for accountability for the Flint Water Crisis, for the rights of individuals with disabilities, and for workers’ rights to bargain collectively.

 

Megan Kathleen Cavanagh

Age: 47

Occupation: Attorney

Municipality of residence: Birmingham

For how long: 3 years

Online campaign information: www.cavanaghforsupremecourt.com

Education: B.S. (Engineering), University of Michigan, 1993; J.D. Wayne State University Law School, 2000

Previously held elected offices: N/A

Top goals: When elected, I will work with lower courts and other stakeholders to find solutions to the problems of our juvenile justice system, such as diversion programs and specialty courts. The Supreme Court should work to increase the availability of legal aid to those who cannot afford an attorney, promote pro bono participation by the bar, and study ways to simplify court processes in order to ensure equal access to justice for all Michigan citizens.

 

Elizabeth T. Clement (I)

Age: 41

Occupation: Justice of Supreme Court

Municipality of residence: East Lansing

For how long: Lifelong

Online campaign information: www.clementforjustice.com

Education: Michigan State University College of Law, Juris Doctorate

Michigan State University Bachelor of Arts, Political Science

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: When I took the bench, I had two primary goals. First, to treat every person fairly and rule in an impartial, independent manner in accordance with the law as written. Second, to advance the work of problem solving courts so that we can expand our ability to provide our veterans, mentally ill, and addicted with the treatment they need. I have been successful in achieving these objectives and intend to carry them forward when elected.

 

Doug Dern
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

 

Kerry Lee Morgan
Did not return questionnaire by press time.

 

Kurtis T. Wilder (I)

Age: 59

Occupation: Michigan Supreme Court Justice

Municipality of residence: Oakland

For how long: One Year.

Online campaign information: www.wilderforjustice.com

Education: University of Michigan, A.B. in Political Science (May 1981), University of Michigan Law School, Juris Doctor (May 1984).

Previously held elected offices: Michigan Court of Appeals (December 1998-May 2017), Washtenaw County Trial Court Judge (March 1992-December 1998).

Top goals: My top goal as a Justice is to provide equal justice under the law. Having authored nearly 180 published Court of Appeals and Supreme Court opinions and participated in over 5,000 cases, I have the experience and commitment to serve the citizens of Michigan faithfully, with integrity and a high level of capability. My judicial philosophy is to interpret the law as written, not as I would like it to have been written.


6th Circuit Court Judge
Two candidates are running for one six-year term. 


Dan Christ

Age: No answer given

Occupation: Attorney for 27 years

Municipality of residence: Bloomfield Township

For how long: 24 years

Online campaign information: www.christforjudge.com

Education: Michigan State University B.A. 1987, University of Detroit School of Law J.D. 1991.

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: My twenty-seven years of civil and criminal trial experience provides me with broad legal and life perspective to perform the responsibilities of a Circuit Court Trial Judge. I am the only candidate who has trial experience! I have the temperament and integrity to treat litigants fairly and impartially and to make sure that justice is served. The role of the judiciary is for the benefit of the litigants and the public not the judiciary. 

 

Jake Cunningham

Age: 33

Occupation: Lawyer

Municipality of residence: Ferndale

For how long: 9 years

Online campaign information: www.jake4judge.com

Education: Oakland University, BA Sociology; Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Juris Doctor

Previously held elected offices: None

Top goals: My top goal — if my neighbors choose to elect me as judge — is to take my experience as the only candidate to have helped decide cases in Circuit Court to further serve the public, as I have through my whole career. In a new and expanded role at the court, I can do more for my community, weighing each case carefully and applying the law fairly in every case I hear.

 


Clawson Public Schools Board of Education
Four candidates are running unopposed for four four-year terms.

Andrea Hodges (I)
Running unopposed.

Thomas J. Reed Jr. (I)
Running unopposed.

Ted Verner (I)
Running unopposed.

Kimberly Ann Zarnick (Write-in)
Running unopposed.


Royal Oak Schools Board of Education
Three candidates are running unopposed for three four-year terms.

Deborah S. Anderson (I)
Running unopposed.

Marty Cardamone (I)
Running unopposed.

Allison Sykes (I)
Running unopposed.


Proposal 18-1

A proposed initiated law to authorize and legalize possession, use and cultivation of marijuana products by individuals who are at least 21 years of age and older, and commercial sales of marijuana through state-licensed retailers

This proposal would:

• Allow individuals 21 and older to purchase, possess and use marijuana and marijuana-infused edibles, and grow up to 12 marijuana plants for personal consumption.

• Impose a 10-ounce limit for marijuana kept at residences and require amounts over 2.5 ounces be secured in locked containers.

• Create a state licensing system for marijuana businesses and allow municipalities to ban or restrict them.

• Permit retail sales of marijuana and edibles subject to a 10% tax, dedicated to implementation costs, clinical trials, schools, roads, and municipalities where marijuana businesses are located.

• Change several current violations from crimes to civil infractions.

Should this proposal be adopted?


Proposal 18-2

A proposed constitutional amendment to establish a commission of citizens with exclusive authority to adopt district boundaries for the Michigan Senate, Michigan House of Representatives and U.S. Congress, every 10 years.

This proposed constitutional amendment would: 

• Create a commission of 13 registered voters randomly selected by the Secretary of State: 

- 4 each who self-identify as affiliated with the 2 major political parties; and 

- 5 who self-identify as unaffiliated with major political parties. 

• Prohibit partisan officeholders and candidates, their employees, certain relatives, and lobbyists from serving as commissioners. 

• Establish new redistricting criteria including geographically compact and contiguous districts of equal population, reflecting Michigan’s diverse population and communities of interest. Districts shall not provide disproportionate advantage to political parties or candidates. 

• Require an appropriation of funds for commission operations and commissioner compensation.

Should this proposal be adopted?


Proposal 18-3

A proposal to authorize automatic and Election Day voter registration, no-reason absentee voting, and straight ticket voting; and add current legal requirements for military and overseas voting and post-election audits to the Michigan Constitution 

This proposed constitutional amendment would allow a United States citizen who is qualified to vote in Michigan to: 

• Become automatically registered to vote when applying for, updating or renewing a driver’s license or state-issued personal identification card, unless the person declines. 

• Simultaneously register to vote with proof of residency and obtain a ballot during the 2-week period prior to an election, up to and including Election Day. 

• Obtain an absent voter ballot without providing a reason. 

• Cast a straight-ticket vote for all candidates of a particular political party when voting in a partisan general election. 

Should this proposal be adopted?


Clawson Charter Amendment
Proposal 18-1

Shall Chapter 18, Section 18.07 of the Clawson Charter, which currently requires publication of notices, proceedings, and ordinances to be either in a newspaper or by posting in at least five public places within the city, be deleted and restated to allow publication, as determined by the City Council unless otherwise required by law, through one or more of the following: posting in at least five public places within the city, published in a newspaper, posting on the City’s website, or publishing by any other means or methods appropriate to properly inform the general public?


Clawson Charter Amendment
Proposal 18-2

Proposed amendment to Clawson City Charter – deletion of Chapter 17 (Justice Court)

Chapter 17 (Justice Court) provides for: (1) A Justice Court, elected judges of the peace, and a traffic violations bureau, which were eliminated in 1969 when the Legislature established district courts, and (2) the elected office of the city constable which was abolished by City Ordinance No. 476 in 1977.

Shall Chapter 17 (Justice Court) of the Charter be deleted?


Royal Oak Charter Amendment
Public Transit System Millage

The proposed amendment to Chapter 8, Section 11 of the Royal Oak City Charter, if approved, would allow the City to levy a millage of up to 1.25 mills for a period of up to five years beginning December 1, 2018, to defray the costs of establishing, operating and maintaining a public transit system in the City of Royal Oak.

Shall the proposal be adopted?


Royal Oak Charter Amendment
Sidewalk Millage

The proposed amendment to Chapter 8, Section 11 of the Royal Oak City Charter, if approved, would allow the City to levy a millage of up to 0.75 mills for a period of up to six (6) years beginning December 1, 2018, to defray the costs of maintaining, repairing and replacing public sidewalks in the City of Royal Oak.

Shall the proposal be adopted?

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