NMU Grad helps shape Governor’s vision

MARQUETTE — While the Upper Peninsula is only about 3% of the state population, but that doesn’t stop some Yoopers from making a big difference for every Michigander. Mark Burton grew up in Champion and graduated from Westwood in 1996. From there, he went to Northern Michigan University for his undergraduate degree, and then graduated from the Michigan State Law program.

Burton now works as a chief strategist for Governor Whitmer, and has worked with her in the past when she was in the legislature. On Thursday, he was on Northern’s campus to discuss some of the policies and changes the Governor spoke about during her recent State of the State address, with topics ranging from infrastructure, car insurance, education, and more.

He may work in Lansing, but Burton still knows where he came from, and is proud of his roots.

“We have a lot of people from the UP in state government, particularly in the governor’s office, and we talk about it all the time,” said Burton. “Every policy decision or other challenge that’s tackled, I always remember my roots.”

Burton says his family still lives in the area, and he tries to get up here to visit them as much as possible. He was joined in the presentation with two of his former professors, Dr. Brian Cherry and Dr. Steve Nelson, who he still keeps in contact with.