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Appointments made to Early Stage Venture Investment Corporation board

Thursday, August 16, 2012 


LANSING, Mich. - Gov. Rick Snyder today announced the appointments of Anthony Berkley, of Portage, and Knut Simonsen, of Ann Arbor, to the Michigan Early Stage Venture Investment Corporation board of directors.


Established in 2003, the seven-member board encourages a healthy economic climate by fostering job creation, retention and expansion through the promotion of investment in venture capital businesses, specializing in early stage and seed investments. Two of the board positions are filled through recommendations to the governor from the Senate Majority Leader and Speaker of the House.


"Anthony and Knut are great choices for these posts," said Snyder. "They bring valuable experiences to this board and I am confident their service will effectively support the economic vitality and growth of Michigan businesses."


Berkley is the portfolio officer and director of mission driven investments for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, where he has worked since 2003. Previously, he served as the foundation's deputy director of education and learning and as an evaluation manager and program director. Berkley holds a Ph.D. in linguistic anthropology from the University of Chicago. He will represent the general public and replaces Charles Rothstein.


Simonsen is vice president of strategy and corporate development for Detroit-based DTE Energy. He also serves as president of DTE Energy Ventures, a clean technology investment group. Previously, Simonsen worked as a management consultant for McKinsey & Company in Dallas and as a project manager in Texaco's energy division in New York. He earned a bachelor's degree in petroleum engineering from Texas A&M University and a master's degree in business administration from Columbia University in New York. Simonsen is a recommendation of Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville and replaces Dennis Bernard. 


Appointees will serve three-year terms that expire June 13, 2015, and their appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.