Vibrant Downtown, Strong Economy

Investments in projects like Michigan Avenue, Horace Blackman Park, and the Hayes Hotel development deal supplement the collaborative effort to locate new professionals and businesses downtown. We must do more to further cut red-tape, encourage entrepreneurship, and spur economic opportunity to rebuild Jackson from the downtown core outwards.

Clean Neighborhoods, Fixed Streets

By streamlining local government, we’ve doubled our street sweeping and restored two rounds of curbside leaf pickup. We need to continue that work to clean up our streets and neighborhoods. While we’ve used new technology to increase efficiencies and patch potholes, we must find a long-term solution to fix our streets and repair crucial infrastructure.

Public Safety, Sustainable Finances

We’ve made tough decisions to build a fund balance, reduce the number of departments, and right-size city hall in order to invest that savings back into quality police and fire services. Continuing to be fiscally responsible and pursuing regional partnerships will help in adequately staffing quality police and fire services and keeping our residents and businesses safe.


Click the issues below to see how Derek is tackling some of the biggest problems Jackson faces.
17 city departments consolidated to 9.
Taxpayer dollars saved by refinancing bonds.
Taxpayer dollars saved by being fiscally responsible.
In Council salary donated back to city, non-profits.

Working hard for you.

In 2011, Derek first ran for City Council because he thought it was time for new, energetic leadership to jumpstart Jackson and help chart a bright future for our city. Since then, he has worked hard to ensure quality public safety, restore fiscal accountability and ensure open, accountable government. Elected twice to serve as Vice Mayor, Derek has not only helped lead City Council through numerous policy proposals, but worked collaboratively to engage the public in making Jackson a great place to live, work, and play.
  • 2010

    Commissioner Dobies

    In 2010, then Mayor Dunigan appointed Derek as a Commissioner to the Human Relations Commission. He was elected to the leadership role of Secretary.

  • 2011

    Councilman Dobies

    In 2011, Derek was elected to his first term on the Jackson City Council for Ward 6. He was re-elected in November 2015.

  • 2013

    Vice Mayor

    In 2013, Derek was elected by his peers to serve as Vice Mayor - a leadership role on the Jackson City Council. He was re-elected to this role in early 2015.


Derek has worked hard to make Jackson a better place to live, work and play. Here are a few ways he's taken leadership in making our community a better place.
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Mar 0

Guest Column: Protection of environment, public health

The Flint water crisis brings to light major political and bureaucratic failures and underscores what happens when we fail to make adequate investments in our crumbling infrastructure. Others ask if this tragedy could happen in their community; if their water is safe to drink. We have heard these concerns in Jackson. Fortunately, the city council […]

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Mar 0
Mar 0

Retooling economic development

Last year, I helped spearhead an effort with the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce to apply for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s startup in a day competition. Jackson was named one of 25 U.S. cities to win a $50,000 grant to develop solutions that let entrepreneurs discover and apply for local, state and federal requirements needed […]

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