Board of Trustees

OU Board of Trustees appoints Jones chair, Calley vice chair

Board of Trustees, Joe Jones, Brian Calley, chair, vice chair, leadership

icon of a calendarJuly 3, 2024

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OU Board of Trustees appoints Jones chair, Calley vice chair
Joe Jones, left, has been selected to serve as OU"s new Board of Trustees chair; Brian Calley, right, has been selected to serve as OU's new Board of Trustees vice chair.

At its June 28 formal meeting, the Oakland University Board of Trustees unanimously appointed Joe Jones as its new chair and Brian Calley as its new vice chair.

Jones was appointed to the Board in September 2020 and had served as vice chair since August 2021. He succeeds outgoing chair Bobby Schostak, who had led the Board since August 2021.

“The Oakland University community is extremely grateful for Trustee Schostak’s dedication and invaluable expertise,” said OU President Ora Hirsch Pescovitz. “Bobby’s insights and acumen were vital to navigating the university in the post-Covid landscape, and positioning the university for ongoing growth.

“We look forward to Trustee Jones’ and Trustee Calley’s leadership and deep understanding of strategic planning and development as we collaborate in transforming Oakland as a leading 21st-century university,” she said.

Jones is the founder of the Hekima Group, a value-added consultancy located in Grand Rapids whose primary mission is to provide wisdom and strategy to a myriad of industries. They offer expertise in areas such as diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, as well as strategic communications and crisis management.

Prior to his role at the Hekima Group, Jones successfully led the Urban League of West Michigan, a historic civil rights organization, for nearly 10 years in their efforts to develop and implement an agenda that promoted economic empowerment in the underserved urban communities of Grand Rapids and West Michigan.

Prior to the Urban League, Jones served as President/CEO of E.E. Milestone and Associates, Inc., a purpose-driven consultancy whose mission was to add value and wisdom to organizations in the areas of strategic communications and cultural competence. Previous to Milestone, Jones was the Managing Partner of Strategic Communications Group, LLC, a consulting firm providing communication strategies and services to a myriad of industries.

From 2016-2022, Jones served as a Grand Rapids City Commissioner representing the Second Ward. He is the senior pastor at Brown Hutcherson Ministries in Grand Rapids and also serves on a number of corporate and civic boards, including Mercantile Bank of Michigan, Axios Incorporated, Corewell Health’s Grand Rapids Community Board, Economic Club of Grand Rapids and Experience Grand Rapids.

Jones holds a bachelor’s degree in Communication Arts from Oakland University and was conferred the degree of Master’s in Ministry Leadership at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. He has also completed executive leadership programs at Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, Stanford University Graduate School of Business and NYU Stern School of Business.

Brian Calley was appointed to OU’s Board of Trustees on January 1, 2019.

As President of the Small Business Association of Michigan, he puts his passion for Michigan’s small businesses front and center. Calley had the honor of serving as Michigan’s 63rd Lieutenant Governor from 2011-2018, playing an integral role in Michigan’s comeback in partnership with Governor Rick Snyder. 

Calley was the driving force behind two historic tax reforms that were the catalyst for significant private-sector job growth in Michigan. During his tenure, more than 555,000 jobs were created and Michigan saw the lowest unemployment rate in 18 years. As Michigan’s lieutenant governor, he also spearheaded regulatory reform, infrastructure improvement and employee engagement efforts.

Much of Calley’s public policy work centered around inclusion for all Michiganders, regardless of the challenges they face because he believes everyone deserves to live a self-determined, independent life.

He is currently serving as the chairman for Autism Alliance of Michigan and has led the charge to increase access to autism services while also championing efforts on mental health, combating the opioid addiction epidemic, jail diversion, special education reform, disability hiring and eliminating child lead poisoning. 

Calley has been honored as one of Crain’s Detroit Business’ 40 under 40 and has received recognition for his leadership by organizations across the state, including the Small Business Association of Michigan, Special Olympics of Michigan, the Michigan Manufacturers Association and the Mental Health Association. He also has received national recognition from Autism Speaks and the U.S. Junior Chamber, which named him one of the Ten Outstanding Young Americans.
Prior to serving as lieutenant governor, Calley served two terms in the Michigan House of Representatives, two terms as an Ionia County commissioner and worked for over a decade in community banking. He holds degrees from Michigan State University, Grand Valley State University and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

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