Blackwell Named Highland Park Financial Manager

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The Local Emergency Financial Assistance Loan Board (ELB) today appointed Arthur Blackwell II as Emergency Financial Manager in Highland Park. Blackwell will replace Ramona Henderson Pearson, who has been Emergency Financial Manager there since June of 2001. "I would like to thank Ramona Henderson Pearson for the difficult job she has faced for the last four years," said State Treasurer Jay B. Rising, Chair of the Emergency Loan Board. "Ramona took the steps necessary to manage the city's financial crisis. However, the board believes Highland Park must now focus its attention on economic development and growing its tax and revenue base."

In announcing Blackwell's appointment, which will take effect when his contract is finalized, Treasurer Rising also expressed appreciation for his willingness to serve his hometown. "Art Blackwell is accepting this appointment out of the love and concern he has for Highland Park," said Treasurer Rising. "The board expects his extensive experience, in the government and business sectors, to play an important role in attracting new business opportunities to Highland Park while continuing to work toward resolution of the city's financial crisis."

Blackwell, who previously served the residents of Wayne County as a member of the Board of Commissioners (1987 to 1994), currently sits on the Detroit Board of Police Commissioners, and is President and CEO of the DeWay Development Corporation.

As compensation for his role as Emergency Financial Manager, Mr. Blackwell has generously requested an annual salary of $1.