Dale Tahtinen Retiring; Governmental Relations Restructured
After 25 years of governmental relations work for Michigan Tech, Dale Tahtinen, vice president for governmental relations, will retire on June 30 (Tahtinen is pictured in the center in the accompanying photo).
"His service to the University has been exceptional," said President Glenn Mroz. In preparation, Mroz announced the University will be transitioning to a new governmental relations structure to reflect changing conditions at the state and federal levels.
State relations will be led by John Lehman. In this capacity, he will report to the president while maintaining his current role as associate vice president within Student Affairs and Advancement.
In its service to the state, Michigan Tech continues to focus on student access, degree attainment, educational efficiency and talent development. Many of these initiatives fall within Lehman's current responsibilities. Michigan Tech will also continue its longstanding relationship with Mickey Knight of Knight Consulting in Lansing.
Brent Burns will lead governmental relations activities in Washington, D.C. as director of Federal Relations. He will also maintain his current role as director of Industry Relations reporting to the executive director of Innovation and Industry Engagement, Jim Baker. Burns will continue to develop Tech's relationship with Federal Science Partners, a firm that has been working with Michigan Tech for the past year.
"Increased emphasis on research and development at Michigan Tech requires fostering a sustained level of communication with governmental agencies in Washington, D.C. That is why federal government relations are best conducted from within the research arm of the University," Mroz explained.
Tahtinen reflected, "After giving notice of my plans to retire over a year ago, I'm pleased to see this new structure and am confident that it will allow the University to continue its productive relationships with Washington, D.C. and Lansing."
Mroz commented, "Government relations are quite literally about relationships: relationships with elected officials, relationships with staffers and relationships with agencies and other partners. It's about bringing together the talents of our faculty and staff with the vision and goals of our partners in Lansing, Washington, the business community and a wide array of non profit institutions and non-governmental organizations. The long lead time Dale has given us is a gift to make sure that the transition of our relationships is as effective as possible."