[nfbmi-talk] levin out at deleg
joe harcz Comcast
joeharcz at comcast.net
Thu Feb 17 23:58:11 UTC 2011
Snyder picks Foley & Lardner attorney Steven Hilfinger to run DELEG
Originally Published: February 16, 2011 1:11 PM Modified: February 16, 2011 4:20 PM
Gov. Rick Snyder has tapped Foley & Lardner LLP veteran attorney Steven Hilfinger to head the Michigan Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth.
Hilfinger, who turns 49 on Monday, will replace acting Director Andy Levin, whom Snyder asked to remain on a temporary basis as the new governor examined
DELEG's functions and potential change. Snyder soon plans to issue an executive order reorganizing the department, one of the biggest in state government.
Hilfinger is managing partner of the Detroit office of Foley & Lardner, with legal expertise in corporate acquisitions, restructurings and regulatory affairs.
In a news release, Snyder said Hilfinger "has an extraordinary background in helping companies navigate expansion and turnaround. He has an impressive knowledge
of the business and regulatory environment and will do an outstanding job in creating a more practical and efficient regulatory system in this state."
Hilfinger's 23-year legal career has included mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructurings, private equity and venture capital transactions, debt
and equity finance transactions, business formation and corporate governance, and general corporate and contract counseling.
His practice includes representing automotive suppliers and other manufacturers, medical device makers, private equity and venture capital funds, financial
institutions and other publicly and privately held businesses.
Hilfinger said he is "honored to be asked by the governor to take on the position." He said the department will be part of the administration's overall
effort "to create a more business-friendly and job-friendly regulatory environment, and I want to be a part of that."
Hilfinger said he initially had let Snyder's transition team know that if there was anything the law firm or he could do to assist with the transition,
"the firm and I would be happy to do that and committed to help in any way we could."
What started as an open-ended offer to be helpful, he said, eventually evolved into discussions about the department director position.
Foley & Lardner also has been involved in work on emergency financial manager legislation, which is a priority of the administration and is being discussed
in the Capitol.
Hilfinger was one of the founding partners of Foley & Lardner's Detroit office, which opened in 2000 and now has 40 attorneys. He was its managing partner
from 2002 to 2006, then became managing partner again in June 2009 when he replaced Nicole Lamb-Hale, who became deputy general counsel at the U.S. Department
He holds a bachelor of business administration degree with a concentration in accounting from the University of Michigan and a law degree from Northwestern
University in Illinois.
In thanking Levin for his service during the transition, Snyder said Levin "has played an important role in maintaining the functions of DELEG as we continue
to develop a reorganization plan for the department that will allow the agency to focus on its core regulatory and licensing functions, administrative
hearings and employment services."
There has been speculation that Snyder will move DELEG economic development functions to the Michigan Economic Development Corp.
Speaking with Crain's today, Levin, an appointee of former Gov. Jennifer Granholm, said he's enjoyed working with Snyder and key staff on the transition
and will remain at DELEG through February.
As for his plans, Levin said he has "nothing to announce at this point."
Hilfinger starts as the department's director Feb. 28.
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