Advance Notice: Briefs

Ebersole Singh named Michigan census chief

By: - July 24, 2019 10:02 am

Susan J. Demas photo

Kerry Ebersole Singh has been named Michigan statewide census director, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Wednesday.

Ebersole Singh has been a fixture in Democratic politics for the last 20 years, working at the national, state and local level. She is CEO of Persuasion Link LLC., a Michigan-based public affairs firm. In the last six years, she has served as the Michigan state director and senior advisor to the Energy Foundation States and Regions program.

“The 2020 census is the first step that determines federal funding for critical services in our state including, infrastructure, health care, Head Start and other education programs. This comprehensive count will require a thorough outreach effort and organization,” Whitmer said. “I have known Kerry for 20 years and am confident that she will rise to this challenge. Kerry, along with the bipartisan Complete Count Committee, will work hard towards ensuring that every single Michigander is counted and represented.”

Whitmer last month signed an executive order establishing the 63-member Census Complete Count Committee aimed at ensuring that the constitutionally mandated, once-a-decade count of people living in the United States is accurate. The governor chairs the committee and Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist is vice-chair.

The census became mired in controversy with the President Donald Trump administration pushing for a citizenship question, from which it ultimately backed away after a court fight.

High stakes for Michigan as SCOTUS grapples with census question

Ebersole Singh formerly served as get out the vote director for former President Barack Obama’s campaign and as a regional director for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). She also has held positions in the state House.

The news release notes she’s married to Sam Singh, a former state House minority leader. The East Lansing Democrat was term-limited in 2018.

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Susan J. Demas

Susan J. Demas is a 21-year journalism veteran and one of the state’s foremost experts on Michigan politics, appearing on MSNBC, CNN, NPR and WKAR-TV’s “Off the Record.” In addition to serving as Editor-in-Chief, she is the Advance’s chief columnist, writing on women, LGBTQs, the state budget, the economy and more. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Farough & Associates, Michigan’s premier political communications firm. For almost five years, Susan was the Editor and Publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, the most-cited political newsletter in the state. Susan’s award-winning political analysis has run in more than 80 national, international and regional media outlets, including the Guardian U.K., NBC News, the New York Times, the Detroit News and MLive. She is the only Michigan journalist to be named to the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Reporters,” the Huffington Post’s list of “Best Political Tweeters” and the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Bloggers.” Susan was the recipient of a prestigious Knight Foundation fellowship in nonprofits and politics. She served as Deputy Editor for MIRS News and helped launch the Michigan Truth Squad, the Center for Michigan’s fact-checking project. She started her journalism career reporting on the Iowa caucuses for The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette. Susan has hiked over 4,000 solo miles across four continents and climbed more than 70 mountains. She also enjoys dragging her husband and two teenagers along, even if no one else wants to sleep in a tent anymore.