Print Friendly and PDF

Wright L. Lassiter III name Crain’s 2021 Newsmaker of the Year

Crain’s Detroit Business named Wright L. Lassiter III, president and chief executive officer of Henry Ford Health System, the 2021 Newsmaker of the Year. Lassiter currently serves as the Chair of the Detroit Regional Chamber Board of Directors, and last year served as the Mackinac Policy Conference Chairman.

“Wright L. Lassiter III’s tireless work as the Conference Chairman and the Henry Ford Health System team were instrumental in the Chamber’s ability to bring back the Mackinac Policy Conference safely and successfully. Even more significantly, he has been a leader for our community during the COVID-19 crisis. Congratulations to Wright on being named Crain’s 2021 Newsmaker of the Year.”

Below is the full Crain’s story:

Each year, Crain’s Detroit Business recognizes the year’s Newsmakers — leaders who made headlines and made a difference in metro Detroit and Michigan — including one Newsmaker of the Year.

For 2021, our Newsmaker of the Year is Wright Lassiter III, the CEO of Detroit’s Henry Ford Health System. From leading the first major health system in Michigan that mandated the COVID-19 vaccine for employees to helping bring back the Mackinac Policy Conference, Lassiter made a lot of news in 2021.

2021’s other Newsmakers
  • Larry Bell made headlines in 2021 when he announced his retirement and the sale of Kalamazoo County-based Bell’s Brewery Inc. to an Australian brewing conglomerate, the culmination of a career that leaves him something of an icon in the craft brewing world in Michigan and beyond. Read more.
  • Jennifer Gilbert has always been a quiet partner in philanthropy alongside her husband Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Detroit-based Rocket Companies Inc. — until 2021. Read more.
  • 2021 was one for the memory books for Mat Ishbia. The president and CEO of UWM completed what was at the time the largest SPAC deal in history at $16 billion and solidified a position as a chief booster for athletics at his alma mater, Michigan State University. Read more.
  • After a 13-year run on Belle Isle, the Detroit Grand Prix will return to the streets of downtown in 2023. Bud Denker has been at the center of the move. Read more.
  • When the largest Black-owned automotive supplier in the country was stripped of its minority-enterprise business status, CEO Vinnie Johnson — once a feared point scorer for the Detroit Pistons — dug in on defense. Read more.
  • Veteran federal prosecutor Dawn Ison made history in 2021 when she became the first Black woman to serve as U.S. attorney in Detroit. For Ison, the appointment is the “capstone” of a 19-year career in the U.S. attorney’s office, where she has prosecuted a series of high-profile drug crimes and public corruption cases. Read more.
  • For nearly two decades, Tina Freese Decker has played an integral role in helping Spectrum Health quietly build a west side health care empire. In 2021, when Spectrum announced its intent to merge with Southfield-based Beaumont Health, Freese Decker — the health system’s president and CEO — became a household name in the Southeast Michigan business community. Read more.
  • In the last year, Ford Motor Co. CEO Jim Farley has helped turn around the company’s stock price, hit the gas on electrification plans and vowed to give EV darling Tesla a run for its money. He also sent shock waves through Michigan when it was announced that Ford would be venturing away from home to invest $11 billion in EV plants and create thousands of jobs in Kentucky and Tennessee. Read more.
  • In the last two years, former General Motors Co. real estate executive Tim Conder has emerged as the local face of one of the most active industrial and warehouse/distribution center developers in the region. Read more.

View the original article.