Detroit Regional Chamber > Detroiter Magazine > Michigan Leaders on Dan Musser, Jr.

Michigan Leaders on Dan Musser, Jr.

May 24, 2013

Pages 66-67

“Over the years, Mackinac Island became our summer retreat – a place with serenity, beauty, charm, relaxed ambiance and a place where people could talk and disagree. Dan ran a first-class ship in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Dan was a host to all of us from Southeastern Michigan, but over the years created a place that all could come together — Mackinac Island, a place of forts and unchartered paths, became a place where barriers went down and people had real conversations and knew they were safe.  But most of all, Dan was our friend. As Memorial Day approaches we feel an emptiness knowing we won’t get his hug and welcome this year. But his spirit is there; he and the Grand will always mean loyalty, friendship and a sense of belonging. That spirit of community and caring will be with us as we start another Detroit Regional Chamber Mackinac Policy Conference, and may we all feel his spirit and be inspired by it.”
— Debbie Dingell, President, D2 Strategies

“Dan Musser was a wonderful person and my dear friend. He wrote America’s book on He wrote America’s book on hospitality and the Grand Hotel has been the crown jewel of Michigan entertainment and tourism for decades. The leaders of Michigan like to gather on the Grand Hotel porch and people from all over the world come to enjoy the Grand. Presidents, governors and families alike are all made to feel special when they walk through the doors of Dan Musser’s hotel. When we arrive this year, we say farewell to a special person.”
— Jim Blanchard, Former Governor, State of Michigan

“The great state of Michigan has lost a great Ambassador. Robert Daniel Musser Jr. left us April 13th, 2013, just under a month before Grand Hotel opened its door for its 127th season. Luckily, he left 60 years of his life’s work in the capable hands of his son, R.D. “Dan” Musser III, daughter Mimi Cunningham as well as a long-time loyal and capable management team,including Ken Hayward, John Hulett  and Jennifer King. The late Mr. Musser’s wife, Amelia, must be comforted by all of the accolades and celebrations surrounding his death. I am reminded of one of my last interviews with Mr. Musser regarding his iconic “little” family business, when he said, ‘We always try to serve good food in a pleasant manner; keep the place clean; smile, and above all, be welcoming and welcome our guests to our place. While we are open, one of us (our family members) is always here.’ Somehow, I think that’s more true than ever now.”
— Paul W. Smith, Host, News/Talk 760 WJR

“Mr. Musser was the kind of person everyone admired because of his genuine love for the Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island and our great state.  His dedication to excellence was inspiring and in so many ways has helped to make Michigan a better place.  We have lost a true friend, but his legacy will always inspire us.”
— Daniel J. Loepp, President and CEO, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan

“My first Grand Hotel experience was in 1985 after moving to Michigan. Over the years, I learned that Dan Musser treated everyone as guests in his own home and was always present to address their needs. We talked often about his two passions, the Grand Hotel and his family. His success at both was remarkable. The best that can be said of any of us is that we will be remembered. Dan’s legacy speaks out every day. ‘Welcome home.’”
— Spencer Johnson, President, Michigan Health & Hospital Association

“Dan Musser had a profound influence on my life. Always the consummate gentleman, his gift of hospitality served as my model for servant leadership. The private times we spent together allowed me a glimpse into his lighter side – his dry wit and his wonderful view of how to ‘fix’ just about anything in the world. This world, our state and my life were enhanced by Mr. Musser being in them.”
— Mike Fezzey, East Michigan Region President, Huntington Bank

“I am so very sorry to hear that Dan Musser, the gracious owner of the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, passed away. Mr. Musser always walked the expansive Grand Hotel porch and lobby with his gift of a handshake and a smile, ever in his suited best, always making every guest feel supremely special. Mr. Musser cast his spell and made Mackinac Island the magical place it is. Our hearts go out to his wife Amelia and his children and grandchildren.”
— Jennifer Granholm, Former Governor, State of Michigan

“Dan Musser Jr. was a visionary leader for Michigan who made Mackinac Island a premier destination in America.  His time as owner of the iconic Grand Hotel brought thousands of visitors from around the world to Mackinac Island and boosted tourism throughout Michigan. Dan was a great man who loved his state, and I know that his son and his family will continue his legacy as great stewards of the Grand and ambassadors for Mackinac Island and Michigan.”
— Debbie Stabenow, Senator, U.S. Senate

“Like the world-renowned Grand Hotel that he dedicated his professional life to, Dan Musser Jr. was an icon in Michigan’s hospitality industry. He was one-of-a-kind and worked tirelessly to provide his many patrons with world-class service, year after year. It is no wonder this national historic landmark has received so much recognition. These achievements could not have been reached without Dan’s leadership and the love and dedication from the Musser family. On behalf of all Michiganders, I extend my most sincere condolences on his passing. Michigan is a better place because of him.”
— Rick Snyder, Governor, State of Michigan