After joining the Detroit Police Department in 1965, Isaiah “Ike” McKinnon rose through the ranks to become Police Chief under Mayor Dennis Archer from 1994-1998. He graduated from the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia and holds a doctorate in higher education administration from Michigan State University, a master’s degree in criminal justice from Mercy College of Detroit, and a bachelor’s degree in history and law enforcement from the University of Detroit. McKinnon is an associate professor of education at University of Detroit Mercy.
Chief of Staff
Lisa Howze is a former State Representative who served Detroit’s 2nd District in 2011-12. She was tapped by Mayor Duggan to co-chair his transition team before being named to the Chief of Staff post. Howze is a certified public accountant who previously worked as an analyst for DTE Energy. She received a master’s degree in finance from Walsh College and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.
Most recently, Melvin “Butch” Hollowell served as general counsel for the Detroit Branch NAACP and president of Melvin Butch Hollowell, P.C. Additionally, he was the chief legal counsel to Mayor Duggan’s campaign before being named as the City’s Corporation Counsel. Hollowell has served as co-chair of the State Democratic Party and as a deputy Wayne County Executive during the Edward McNamara administration.
Chief James Craig came to Detroit after serving in the same post in the Cincinnati Police Department for two years. Previously, he spent two years as chief of the Portland Police Department in Maine. A native Detroiter, Chief Craig started his police career here in the City in 1977. After a downsizing of the Detroit Police Department, he joined the Los Angeles police force and remained there for 28 years.
Chief Financial Officer
In addition to leading Detroit’s Finance Department, John Hill also serves on Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s restructuring team. He is a certified public accountant who specializes in municipal finance. Hill is the former CEO of the non-profit Federal City Council in Washington, D.C. While working in the nation’s capital, he helped to restructure D.C.’s financial and operational management systems and improve the delivery of city services.
Group Executive for Operations
As the Group Executive for Operations, Gary Brown is responsible for ensuring the continued improvement of city services. He was initially hired as Chief Compliance Officer by Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, after spending four years as president pro tem on City Council. Prior to being elected to council, Brown was deputy chief of the Detroit Police Department’s Professional Accountability Bureau. His career with the police department spanned 26 years.
F. Thomas Lewand
Group Executive for Jobs and Economic Growth
Thomas Lewand has been tasked with creating initiatives and opportunities that will put Detroiters to work and increase economic growth in the City. Previously, he was chairman of the Michigan Democratic Party and a partner at Bodman, PLC. Lewand is noted for his role in helping to negotiate the agreement between the City of Detroit, Wayne County and the Detroit Lions to build Ford Field. He has served on the boards of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Wayne County Economic Development Corporation.
Group Executive for Neighborhoods
One of Mayor Duggan’s priorities was to create a single department to oversee city services that impact neighborhoods. Charlie Beckham leads the new Department of Neighborhoods, which has a director stationed in each of the seven City Council districts. Additionally, Beckham manages the Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department. He has served as an advisor in every mayoral administration since Coleman Young.
Dan Dirks brings 25 years of local and national experience in public transportation to his role as director of the Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT). He is responsible for coordinating the City’s overall transportation services, including DDOT, the People Mover, and the M-1 Rail. Previously, Dirks served as general manager of the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) from 1998 – 2007. Most recently, he operated his own transportation consulting company in Louisville, Kentucky.
Chief Information Officer
Beth Niblock was named Detroit’s Chief Information Officer after serving 11 years as CIO for Louisville Metro, the combined local government for the City of Louisville and Jefferson County, Kentucky. Prior to becoming Detroit’s CIO, she was a member of the technology team led by the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy that visited the city in 2013 to identify ways to grow and improve city services through the use of information technology.
Group Executive for Civil Rights and Ethics
Portia Roberson leads the Mayor’s newly-created division of Civil Rights and Ethics, which works to ensure that city government and those who do business with it are held to the highest ethical standards. She will also enforce non-discrimination laws in the workplace. Most recently, Roberson served as Detroit’s Corporation Counsel, and she led the federal Strong Cities, Strong Communities Initiative as a member of the White House Office of Domestic Policy Council. Additionally, she is a former assistant Wayne County prosecutor.