MARQUETTE - Gov. Rick Snyder appointed Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Director Keith Creagh Monday as the new director of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
Creagh, who has been in Marquette recently discussing proposed severance tax issues with the Marquette County Board and other officials, replaces Rodney Stokes, who Snyder named Thursday to become part of his executive office.
Stokes will be the administration's point man on working with cities to help them become more vibrant and inviting by enhancing their existing resources.
Keith Creagh, center, was appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder Monday to head the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, replacing Rodney Stokes. This photo shows Creagh in Marquette earlier this month when he was part of a panel that discussed proposed severance tax issues with the Marquette County Board. Also pictured are state geologist Hal Fitch, left, and Valerie Brader, deputy legal counsel and senior policy advisor for Snyder. (Journal photo by John Pepin)
"Keith is a natural choice to become our next DNR director," Snyder said in a news release. "He has a strong understanding of Michigan's conservation, economic and environmental needs, vast experience and ability to bring people together, and a love of our state's great outdoors that will make for a seamless transition."
An administration news release said Creagh has extensive management experience, including policy development, strategic planning and operational leadership. He has served as Agriculture and Rural Development director since January of 2011 and was director of industry affairs for the Neogen Corp., after serving for 30 years within the state department of agriculture. He has a bachelor's degree in forestry from Michigan Tech University and is an avid outdoorsman.
"I am honored to serve as director of the Department of Natural Resources and to work with such a dedicated group of professionals," Creagh said in a written statement. "I will strive to uphold the department's great standard of excellence and build upon its past successes. As a lifelong outdoor enthusiast, I understand the importance of the state's natural resources to Michigan citizens. Hunting, fishing, camping, hiking and other outdoor pursuits are not just hobbies in this state. They are a defining part of who we are as Michiganders."
As the governor's special adviser for city placemaking, Stokes will work with cities on projects such as ensuring the availability of quality green space and enhancing recreational opportunities.Stokes was one of the governor's first cabinet appointees after his election in 2010.
All of the appointments become effective July 9.
John Pepin can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 206.