Lt. Governor John D. Cherry is a seasoned leader who has successfully worked to ensure that state government is efficient and shares Michigan's priorities.
With more than 20 years of service in the Michigan Legislature as a State Representative, State Senator and Minority Leader, Cherry has received many awards and honors, including recognition from The Detroit News as one of Michigan's Most Effective Legislators. Cherry was named the 2005 Conservationist of the Year by the Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC) and is the immediate past Chair of the Great Lakes Commission. He also has served as Chair of the National Lieutenant Governor's Association.
Cherry's focus on families and education has meant that more of Michigan's children have the opportunity to go to college. He has led the Lt. Governor's Commission on Higher Education & Economic Growth, making a series of recommendations that have brought higher education into the larger discussion of creating and retaining jobs here in Michigan. He also serves as a gubernatorial appointee to the Midwest Higher Education Compact.
Cherry's interest in politics began as a teenager through organizing and political activism. He took a job as administrative assistant to former State Senator Gary Corbin, later serving as political director for the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO until his election to the Michigan House.
As a legislator, Cherry focused on the issues that were most important to Michigan citizens - families, the quality of life in Michigan, the environment and Michigan's great outdoors. He has authored and co-sponsored several milestone Michigan laws dealing with workers' rights, environmental protection and conservation.
Cherry received a bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of Michigan in 1973 and a Master's degree in Public Administration from the University of Michigan, Flint in 1984. He has been awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Saginaw Valley State University and an Honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from Central Michigan University.
Cherry is married to Pamela M. Faris. They have a married daughter, Meghan, a son, John Daniel, and one grandchild. The family has an active interest in Springer Spaniels and Cherry is a member of the Eastern Michigan Springer Spaniel Association. An avid hunter and outdoorsman, Cherry and his family live in Genesee County.