Grand Rapids selects new deputy city manager

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., (WOOD) — Grand Rapids has named its next deputy city manager.

Mary (Kate) Berens previously served as the deputy city manager of Bellevue, Washington, the second largest city center in Washington state.

Berens is a Midland, Michigan, native with a law degree from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s in conservation and wildland resources from the University of Washington.

She has 25 years of experience in city government and law. She served as Bellevue’s deputy city manager since May 2014, and before that as the city’s deputy city attorney for nine years. There, she worked on homelessness and housing initiatives, as well as community planning and land use. She also previously worked for a law firm.

“What excites me about working in local government is knowing how local policy decisions impact people daily. The work that we do, at its best, creates a stable platform for all our residents to pursue their dreams,” Berens said in a statement.

In Grand Rapids, her responsibilities will include coordinating economic and community development, planning, mobility, public works and infrastructure services. She’ll also help lead a number of strategic initiatives.

Berens will replace Eric DeLong as he retires. She will start her position on March 9.

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