New Commissioner Schools - 2018

Celebrating 50 years of New County Commissioner education with a new format. Register now.

Beginning in 1968, Michigan has elected county commissioners from districts within their counties, similar to the way we have districts for state representatives and senators. Before that, counties were governed by a county board of supervisors, populated with township supervisors and city representatives. The change was in response to the 1964 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Reynolds v. Sims, which required legislative districts to be reapportioned on a one-person, one-vote basis and Avery v. Midland County (Texas)  in 1968 which applied the principle to counties.

Michigan State University Extension and the Michigan Association of Counties had previously offered educational programs for local elected officials. In 1968, the two organizations started an educational program for these new county commissioners following the November election. That program has come to be known as the New Commissioner Schools, and has been offered every two years since.

2018 New Commissioner School schedule:

All Four Locations


Registration - 2:30 p.m.

Educational Program - 3:00-6:00 p.m.

Networking Reception and Dinner - 6:00-8:00 p.m.

(hosted by Michigan Association of Counties)


Breakfast - 8 a.m.

Educational Program - 8:30-11:30 a.m.

2018 New Commissioner School locations:

  • Monday-Tuesday: November 26-27; Grand Rapids Crowne Plaza, Grand Rapids, MI
  • Monday-Tuesday: December 3-4, 2018; Treetops Resort, Gaylord, MI
  • Monday-Tuesday: December 10-11, 2018; Quality Inn and Suites, Escanaba, MI
  • Monday-Tuesday: December 17-18, 2018; Bavarian Inn and Conference Center, Frankenmuth, MI

Additional information and the link to registration are available on the MSUE events page. Participants must register online, using the MSU Extension events management system. There is a group registration process for counties registering multiple participants. The workshop fee is $125, payable by credit card or check. Subscribe to our “Government” news digest to learn about other local and tribal government programs and articles by MSU Extension.

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