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Sonya Mays

President and CEO, Develop Detroit Inc.; Treasurer, Board of Education, Detroit Public Schools Community District

Sonya Mays is president and CEO of Develop Detroit, a real estate and housing development firm focused on improving housing stability and creating economic opportunities across Detroit. She previously served as senior advisor to the emergency manager of Detroit. In that role, Mays played a key part in guiding the city through the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history. She was responsible for a diverse range of legal, financial, operational, land use and economic development activities across Detroit’s restructuring efforts.

Prior to her work with the emergency manager, Mays served as vice president in the Global Industrials Group within Deutsche Bank’s Corporate and Investment Bank Division in New York. Mays provided capital markets expertise and mergers and acquisitions advisory services to large U.S. and global automotive and construction products companies.

Mays earned a bachelor’s, master’s and law degree from the University of Michigan. She was elected to a four-year term on the Board of Education for the Detroit Public School Community District in 2016.