District 7 - John L. Willis
Commissioner John L. Willis represents District 7 which is located within the city of Jackson.
Commissioner John L. Willis was elected during the 2022 General Election.
John Willis is the Chief Equity Officer and the Director of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion for the City of Jackson, Michigan. He is also the former Director of the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center and Head Men's Basketball Coach at Jackson College. For the past 20 years, he has been an active community leader in developing programs for youth and mentoring young people. As a professional, he travels speaking to communities on various issues concerning urban areas, inner- cities, and community building. He was the featured speaker at the 1st African-American Male Summit held at Jackson Community College and for several events surrounding diversity and equity in communities.
He has received numerous community awards for his service and guidance to the community. He received; the NAACP Community Service Award, the Negro Professional Business Women's Community Service Award, and the M.L. King Citizenship Award for his work in the Jackson community. In 2019, he received the Al Cotton Award given to an individual who has made significant contributions to the Jackson-area sporting community and made Jackson "a better place to play. In 2021 he received the Jackson Black Excellence Awards' Community Service Award and the Jackson Trailblazer Award. He received the Trailblazer Award, the highest award given at the Jackson Black Excellence Awards, for his dedication to the community and example of servant leadership and a scholarship named in his honor for Jackson area high school students that embrace community service.
He completed his undergraduate studies in Business Administration at the University of Phoenix, earned his Masters Athletic Coaching Certificate from Drake University, and recently received his Executive Certificate in Diversity Planning (ECDP) from Northwestern University. He serves on many community boards and continues to provide youth services and opportunities for disadvantaged people in our community.
He and his lovely wife, Mary, have been happily married for 35 years, and are the proud parents of 10 children (7 boys and 3 girls) and 15 grandchildren.