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Mike Duggan

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Mike Duggan
Duggan in 2022
75th Mayor of Detroit
Assumed office
January 1, 2014
Preceded byDave Bing
Prosecutor of Wayne County
In office
July 11, 2001 – July 16, 2004
Preceded byJohn O'Hair
Succeeded byKym Worthy
Personal details
Michael Edward Duggan

(1958-07-15) July 15, 1958 (age 66)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic[a]
Spouse(s)Sonia Hassan (m. 2021)
Lori Maher (div. 2019)
EducationUniversity of Michigan (BA, JD)
WebsiteCampaign website

Michael Edward Duggan (born July 15, 1958) is an American lawyer, businessman, and politician serving as the 75th mayor of Detroit, Michigan since 2014. A member of the Democratic Party, Duggan previously served as the Wayne County Prosecutor from 2001 to 2004, and as the deputy county executive of Wayne County from 1987 to 2001.

Duggan received national attention following his election in 2013, in part for being the first white mayor of the majority-black city since Roman Gribbs in the early 1970s, when Detroit's population still had a white majority.[1][2] Duggan was reelected mayor in 2017 and 2021. In 2020, he enjoyed an approval rating of over 68%, the highest approval rating of any mayor of Detroit.[3]

Early life and education


Duggan was born in Detroit on July 15, 1958, to Patrick J. Duggan and Joan Colosimo.[4] His paternal grandfather was from County Kilkenny, Ireland moving to Detroit at the age of 18, and his paternal grandmother was the child of Irish and German immigrants.[5] Duggan spent his first six years at a home on Stansbury Street on the city's west side before moving to nearby Livonia in 1963.[6] He graduated from Detroit Catholic Central High School, and then received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan in 1980, followed by a Juris Doctor degree from its law school in 1983.

Early career


As a Democrat, Duggan has served as an appointed and an elected official in Wayne County, Michigan, beginning in 1986 as Wayne County's assistant corporation counsel. He was deputy County Executive from 1987 to 2001 under Edward H. McNamara, and was elected prosecutor in 2000.[7] He also served as the interim general manager of SMART, the region's public transit authority, from 1992 to 1996.[8][9]

Beginning in 2004, Duggan was president and CEO of the Detroit Medical Center. He was in this position when the formerly nonprofit DMC was sold to publicly traded Vanguard Health Systems in 2010.[10]

Mayor of Detroit


2013 election campaign

Duggan campaigning in May 2013

In 2012, Duggan resigned his position at the DMC and moved from the suburb of Livonia to the city of Detroit, intending to run for the office of mayor the following year.[11] However, he failed to qualify for the ballot because he filed less than a year after establishing residency in the city; if he had waited two more weeks to file—which still would have met the filing deadline—he would have qualified.[12]

Instead, he mounted a write-in campaign, and received 52% of the vote in the August primary election.[13] Under Detroit's two-round system, the two highest vote-getters run against one another in the general election, which meant that Duggan ran against second-place finisher Benny Napoleon, who had won 29% of the vote.[14] Duggan ran with the campaign slogan, "Every neighborhood has a future", on a platform of financial turnaround, crime reduction, and economic development.[15] He received 55% of the vote in the general election in November, becoming the first white mayor of the now-majority-black city since Roman Gribbs, who served from 1970 to 1974.[2]

First term


Duggan focused, during his first term, on improvements to emergency services response times and bus services.[16] He also saw a demolition program that was ambitious, but controversial.[17]

Duggan also focused on relighting the city's streetlights, a task in which he saw significant success and built upon efforts initiated by his mayoral predecessor Dave Bing.[16][17]

Duggan had pledged to create a municipally-owned insurance company, dubbed "D Insurance".[17] He advocated hard in 2015 for a bill that would create such a program, but it failed to pass in the Michigan Legislature.[17]

Duggan drastically increased the number of parks that receive regular maintenance, which increased from 25 parks in 2013 to 275 by 2017 per reporting by the mayor's office.[17]

Towards the end of his first term, Duggan established Detroit's first office of sustainability which focuses on creating green, sustainable spaces in Detroit and preparing against climate change affects. The office of sustainability then established Detroit's first Sustainability Action Agenda in June 2019.[18] Joel Howrani Heeres was named as the first Director and remained in the position until August, 2022.[19]

Detroit's unemployment rate by 2017 shrunk down to 7.5%, the lowest it had been since 2000.[17] Duggan worked to create Detroit at Work, an online portal launched in 2017 which connects job seekers with employers and with job training.[17] Duggan also created the "Grow Detroit’s Young Talent" program, a youth summer employment program that employed thousands of youth.[17]

In 2017, the city began issuing Detroit ID, a municipal identification card, which helps enable residents without a social security number to access city services and some banks.[17]

Despite his pledge to quickly reverse the trend, Detroit had continued to see overall depopulation.[17] During his first term, Duggan developed a reputation as a capable technocrat.[17] During his first term, the municipal government's authority was limited by state oversight, with emergency manager Kevyn Orr overseeing the city's bankruptcy and finances.[16]

Second term

Duggan taking his oath of office for his second term

In the 2017 Detroit mayoral election, Duggan was re-elected in a landslide, taking 72% of the vote to challenger Coleman Young II's 27%.

In the spring of 2018, the city of Detroit was released from state oversight, giving its municipal government full control over its operations for the first time in four decades.[16]

Duggan encountered a controversy after, in December 2019, the Detroit Office of the Inspector found that three top municipal officials, including his chief of staff Alexis Wiley, had ordered public employees to erase emails having to do with to the nonprofit organization Make Your Date. Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel launched an investigation into this. In September 2020, Investigative Reporters and Editors awarded Duggan and the city the dubious honor of the "Golden Padlock Award", recognizing them as the most secretive United States agency or individual.[20]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Duggan was credited with having implemented efforts such as mass testing.[21] In March 2021, Duggan initially declined to order 6,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, saying that he believed the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were better options.[22][23][24] After backlash, Duggan declared he would no longer decline the vaccine.[25]

Duggan spent much of the last days of his second term managing the city’s rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine.[26] Throughout the early months of 2021, access to the vaccine was expanded in the city.[27] He also addressed concerns about the vaccine from the majority black population of the city.[28] Duggan, when questioned about issues with the vaccine rollout, blamed the failures largely on the federal government.[27] In February 2021, Duggan went to Washington D.C. to meet with other state and local leaders and President Joe Biden to discuss the responses to the pandemic.[29]

In December 2021, Duggan led efforts to demolish the abandoned former American Motors Headquarters building. After being demolished, the land is intended to be used for a redevelopment project to boost the local economy.[30]

Third term

Duggan at a March 2022 event with Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Duggan was re-elected for a third term in the 2021 Detroit mayoral election.[31]

In the first few months, Duggan unveiled a new proposed city budget, which was subsequently approved by the city council.[32]

Previously, during Duggan's second term as Mayor in 2019 the Detroit Incinerator built in 1989 was shut down.[33] The Incinerator had caused many health problems in neighboring areas and was also a source of air pollution. During its last several years in operation, its pollution emissions were 750 times higher than the standards.[34] On May 24, 2022 Duggan announced that the Incinerator would be demolished. The company tasked with the demolition estimated that the demolition would produce a revenue of $1.3 million in salvaged metals and other materials for the Greater Detroit Resource Recovery Authority (GDRRA).[34]

In November 2022, Duggan announced changes to key staff in his administration.[35]

One of the initiatives Duggan is focusing on is affordable housing. Mayor Duggan and other city Council Members developed a $203 million plan to provide affordable housing for Detroit residents. The money got divided between seven services and programs, including homeowner assistance programs, apartment building rehabs, and a Detroit Housing Services division. The goal is to convert vacant apartment buildings into rental housing, expedite the approval process for affordable housing projects, help landlords bring properties into compliance, and more.[36] Duggan believes this plan is "one of the most comprehensive strategies for providing affordable housing." However, the $203 million is not an annual allocation and is only for 2022.[37]

In addition to this plan, the Detroit Housing for the Future Fund (DHFF) aims to preserve existing affordable housing. In January 2022, the fund received a $10 million donation from KeyBank. The goal is to raise $75 million, and with this contribution, the city has reached $65 million of that goal.[38] Just recently, in October, the DHFF completed its second project in Midtown, which involved renovating a historic apartment building. Renovations included upgrading the electric plumbing and replacing the roof.[39]

To further assist Detroit's residents, Duggan's administration named April Faith-Slaker as the executive director of the city's Office of Eviction Defense, a new office intended to provide residents facing eviction with legal counsel.[40]

In 2023, Duggan proposed a land value tax, which would double the tax rate paid by owners of vacant or abandoned property. This proposal would first have to be adopted by the Michigan legislature in order to be considered for the City of Detroit.[41] State Representative Stephanie Young introduced legislation to create a land value tax during the 2023 legislative session.[42] If approved by the state legislature, a land value tax would go before Detroit voters for a citywide vote in order to be enacted.[43]

In 2023, Detroit experienced its first year of net population growth since 1957 (per Census Bureau estimates).[44][45] When he first ran for mayor, Duggan had pledged to reverse the city's trend of population loss.[17] For severals years before the United States Census Bureau's estimates registered this population growth in the city, Duggan had contended that they were miscalculating the city's population trends and that the city had been already regaining populace, going as far as to file lawsuits alleging that the bureau had undercounted the city's population.[46]

Personal life

Duggan and Hassan Duggan, to whom he is married

Duggan was married to Mary Loretto "Lori" Maher. In May 2019, Duggan and Maher released a joint statement confirming that they planned to end their marriage.[47][48] The divorce was finalized on September 17, 2019.[49] On June 29, 2021, Duggan announced his engagement to Dr. Sonia Hassan.[50] Duggan and Hassan had been publicly linked prior to his divorce from Maher, and their relationship was the subject of public scrutiny and whether Duggan and the city gave preferential treatment to a program that Hassan led at Wayne State University.[50] He married Hassan in 2021.[51]

See also



  1. ^ The mayor of Detroit is formally a non-partisan office.


  1. ^ "Poll: Mike Duggan Leads Race For Detroit Mayor". The Huffington Post. March 5, 2013. Retrieved September 20, 2013.
  2. ^ a b Smith, Jay Scott (March 5, 2013). "Mike Duggan: A White Candidate For (Gasp!) Detroit". Newsweek. Retrieved May 16, 2015.
  3. ^ Dovere, Edward-Isaac. "How Detroit's Mayor Became Unbeatable". POLITICO Magazine. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  4. ^ Fletcher, Michael A. (November 4, 2013). "Mike Duggan: The New Face of Detroit's City Hall?". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 22, 2013.
  5. ^ Ferretti, Christine (March 18, 2020). "Retired senior judge Patrick J. Duggan, father of Detroit mayor, dies". The Detroit News. Gary Miles. Retrieved March 19, 2020.
  6. ^ Burns, Gus (November 20, 2013). "Mayoral candidate Mike Duggan visits childhood home in slipping Detroit neighborhood". MLive.com. Advance Publications, Inc. Retrieved March 19, 2020.
  7. ^ Kosmetatos, Sofia (July 27, 2007). "Tough Medicine: DMC's Comeback Is Latest Success for Duggan". The Detroit News.
  8. ^ "Saving SMART". Detroit Free Press. Knight Ridder. February 29, 1992. pp. 8A – via Newspapers.com.
  9. ^ Kaufman, Richard C. (January 29, 1996). "New SMART boss speaks of big dreams and lots of buses". Detroit Free Press. Knight Ridder. pp. 7A – via Newspapers.com.
  10. ^ "Vanguard Set to Acquire Detroit Hospitals". The Wall Street Journal. December 31, 2010.
  11. ^ Helms, Matt (November 8, 2012). "Mike Duggan to Step Down as DMC Chief in Pursuit of Detroit Mayoral Bid". Detroit Free Press.
  12. ^ Staff (June 28, 2013). "Mike Duggan Will Run for Detroit Mayor as Write-In Candidate". Southfield, MI: WJBK-TV. Archived from the original on September 13, 2014. Retrieved September 20, 2013.
  13. ^ "Write-ins Dominate Detroit Voting". Politico. Associated Press. August 7, 2013. Retrieved September 21, 2013.
  14. ^ "How Underdog Story Propelled Mike Duggan to Top Vote-Getter in Detroit Primary". Detroit Free Press. August 7, 2013. Retrieved August 29, 2013.
  15. ^ "Detroit Elects First White Mayor in More than 4 Decades". CNN. November 7, 2013.
  16. ^ a b c d Ferretti, Christine (June 21, 2018). "Mike Duggan: Mayor instrumental to Detroit's turnaround". The Detroit News. Retrieved December 13, 2020.
  17. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Pratt, Chastity (September 28, 2017). "Promises, meet reality: Measuring Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's first term". www.bridgemi.com. Bridge Michigan. Retrieved December 13, 2020.
  18. ^ "Office of Sustainability". City of Detroit. Retrieved December 16, 2022.
  19. ^ Monday; May 29; Detroit, 2017 | Source: City of. "City of Detroit creates Office of Sustainability, names first director". Model D. Retrieved December 16, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  20. ^ Neavling, Steve (September 25, 2020). "Duggan, city of Detroit awarded 'Golden Padlock' for deleted public records". Detroit Metro Times. Retrieved December 13, 2020.
  21. ^ Gill, Kimberly; Clarke, Kayla (May 14, 2020). "'Detroiters responded': Mayor Duggan credits residents with success in fight against COVID-19 outbreak". WDIV. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
  22. ^ "Detroit Mayor Duggan doubles down on not wanting J&J vaccine for 'foreseeable future'". Crain's Detroit Business. March 4, 2021. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
  23. ^ Shamus, Christina Hall and Kristen Jordan. "Detroit declined Johnson & Johnson vaccines this week, but will take them in future". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
  24. ^ "City of Detroit turns down 6K Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine doses". WXYZ. March 5, 2021. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
  25. ^ Frank, Annalise (March 5, 2021). "Detroit Mayor Duggan walks back comments, now says he'll welcome Johnson & Johnson vaccine". Crain's Detroit Business. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
  26. ^ Moran, Amy Huschka and Darcie. "Mayor Duggan gets COVID-19 vaccine shot, outlines Detroit's deployment plan". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 6, 2022.
  27. ^ a b Shamus, Christina Hall and Kristen Jordan. "Detroit ready to open TCF garage for COVID-19 vaccinations, Duggan says". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 6, 2022.
  28. ^ Warikoo, Niraj. "Majority of Detroiters and Blacks opposed to COVID-19 vaccine, rooted in racism". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 6, 2022.
  29. ^ "User account".
  30. ^ Afana, Dana. "Former American Motors Corporation headquarters to be razed for $66M redevelopment project". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 6, 2022.
  31. ^ Afana, Dana. "Detroit mayoral election: Mike Duggan wins third term, defeats Anthony Adams in landslide". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved November 4, 2021.
  32. ^ Afana, Dana. "Detroit City Council approves 2023 fiscal year budget". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 6, 2022.
  33. ^ "Detroit announces the demolition of the controversial Detroit Incinerator". www.freep.com. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  34. ^ a b "Mayor Duggan announces that City will begin demolition of incinerator within next few weeks". City of Detroit. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  35. ^ "Duggan announces lead staff changes, creates new roles in Detroit's administration". The Detroit News. Retrieved December 6, 2022.
  36. ^ "Detroit Housing Plans". City of Detroit. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  37. ^ Rahal, Sarah (July 21, 2022). "City introduces $203M affordable housing plan to protect Detroiters from rising rent". The Detroit News. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  38. ^ Benavides-Colón, Amelia (January 12, 2022). "Detroit's affordable housing fund gets $10M boost". The Detroit News. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  39. ^ Powers, Sara (October 26, 2022). "Detroit housing fund completes 2nd project, adds affordable housing to Midtown". www.cbsnews.com. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  40. ^ Harding, Hayley (December 14, 2022). "Detroit Mayor Duggan taps leaders for Office of Eviction Defense". The Detroit News. Retrieved December 15, 2022.
  41. ^ Today, Detroit (October 17, 2023). "Detroit Today: Duggan's Detroit land tax proposal, explained". WDET 101.9 FM. Retrieved November 15, 2023.
  42. ^ Barrett, Malachi (October 20, 2023). "Detroit's land value tax plan explained". BridgeDetroit. Retrieved November 20, 2023.
  43. ^ "Duggan, Detroit lawmakers push land value tax plan". Michigan Radio. August 31, 2023. Retrieved November 20, 2023.
  44. ^ Afana, Dana (May 16, 2024). "'Detroit is a vibrant and growing city again'; population grows for first time since 1957". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved May 19, 2024.
  45. ^ Powers, Sara (May 16, 2024). "Detroit sees population growth for first time since 1957 - CBS Detroit". CBS News. Retrieved May 19, 2024.
  46. ^ Multiple sources:
  47. ^ "Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's wife Mary Loretto Maher files for divorce". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  48. ^ "Mike Duggan and wife file for divorce". WXYZ. May 3, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  49. ^ Lengel, Allan (September 24, 2019). "'Breakdown in the Marriage:' Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's Divorce Is Final". www.deadlinedetroit.com. Retrieved January 12, 2020.
  50. ^ a b Ferretti, Sarah Rahal and Christine. "Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan gets engaged to doctor". The Detroit News. Retrieved June 30, 2021.
  51. ^ "Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan marries Dr. Sonia Hassan". WXYZ 7 Action News Detroit. September 29, 2021. Retrieved August 18, 2023.
Political offices
Preceded by Mayor of Detroit