As the Chief Talent Solutions & Engagement Officer, Kerry leads MEDC’s strategic focus of developing high-wage skills growth by working with businesses, higher education institutions and communities to better attract, retain and cultivate the talent critical to growing the state’s economy.
Prior to serving at MEDC, Kerry was Director of the Office of Sixty by 30 in the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO), where she established the office. During her time as Director, Kerry launched two instrumental programs, Futures for Frontliners and MI Reconnect, which aim to create a more talented workforce by providing a tuition-free path for Michiganders pursuing in-demand certificates or associate degrees. In this capacity, she also served as the Chair of the MI STEM Council, designed to improve and promote innovation and collaboration in STEM education and prepare students for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. She also served as the lead staff supporting the state’s Workforce Development Board, helping to create a comprehensive, accessible and successful workforce development system. In conjunction with Kerry’s time at LEO, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in 2021 tapped her to lead the Protect Michigan Commission’s community engagement strategy, which aimed to educate residents on the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Before she returned to state government by leading the Be Counted 2020 Census effort on behalf of Gov. Whitmer, Kerry operated her own independent consulting firm, serving a variety of clients across business, nonprofit and philanthropic sectors. She has experience creating and developing strategy for a variety of national, state and local government programs and advocacy campaigns, as well as nonprofit social organizations and causes.
Kerry began her career 25 years ago in Michigan’s competitive political and legislative arena. As a former chief of staff to Barbara Farrah, a legislative liaison for the Department of Information Technology and constituent relations staff in the House of Representatives, Kerry has proved time and again to be a multisector professional adept at leading solutions around critical issues facing Michigan.
Kerry is a graduate of Michigan State University, with a degree in political theory and constitutional democracy.