EMSD / Michigan Works!

The Employment Management Services Division (EMSD) of the Upjohn Institute manages employment and training services for Branch, Calhoun, Kalamazoo, and St. Joseph counties under the Michigan Works! umbrella. Today, EMSD manages job training programs for these government-funded programs:

  • Welfare-to-Work
  • School-to-Work
  • Public Employment Service
  • Workforce Investment Act (WIA)
  • Michigan Prisoner Re-entry Initiative (MPRI)

EMSD’s origin dates back to 1971, when along with the city and county of Kalamazoo, the Upjohn Institute helped plan, implement and administer a local employment program, created by the federal Emergency Employment Act. The program provided funding to finance job opportunities in local public service and nonprofit agencies for unemployed and disadvantaged workers.
In 1974, the Institute’s participation evolved into the Employment Management Services Division (EMSD) to administer job training programs funded under federal and state government legislation. These have included the following:

  • Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA)
    A major initiative that shifted responsibility for selecting service providers and monitoring performance to the local level from 1973-1982.
  • Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA)
    Successor program to CETA. EMSD operations expanded to include St. Joseph County, 1982-1999.
  • Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act (TAA)
    Designed to assist workers who lost their jobs as a result of foreign trade, 2002-present
  • Wagner-Peyser Act
    A national labor exchange system for employment; originally established in 1933, amended by the Workforce Investment Act of 1998
  • Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA) aka Welfare Reform
    Designed to help move individuals into employment and change welfare into a program of temporary assistance, 1996-present
    PRWORA instituted Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), 1997-present
  • Workforce Investment Act (WIA)
    Increased state-level activity to a wide variety of job training programs, 2000-present

EMSD Staff

Ben Damerow

Ann DeZwarte
     Grant and Contract Accountant

Don Edgerly

Nancy Gibson
     MIS and MiTalent Specialist

Jeanne Konrad
     Deputy Director, EO Officer, Program / Eligibility Monitor

Diana Lundquist
     Lead Grants and Contract Accountant

Antonio Mitchell
     Community Coordinator for Prisoner Reentry Programs

Barbara Newhouse
     Employment and Training Specialist

Dallas Oberlee
     Grant / Subcontractor Coordinator

Kathy Olsen
     Marketing and Community Information Coordinator, Community Liaison

Celeste Pickrell
     Special Projects

Kristi Potts
     Administrative Assistant

Kara Stewart
     Sector Strategy Specialist

Robert A. Straits
     Consultant, W.E. Upjohn Institute

Tracey Sulka
     Computer and Web Page Consultant

Jim Walters
     Michigan Works! Service Center Liaison, Property Office, Procurement

Useful Links

U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL)
Workforce Investment Act Laws & Regulations, USDOL
Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
Wagner-Peyser Act
Trade Adjustment Assistance Reform Act of 2002 (TAA)
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996
     (a.k.a. welfare reform legislation of 1996)
Workforce Development Agency, State of Michigan (WDASOM)
Michigan Works! Association