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Wednesday, January 19, 2022

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    Detroit Land Bank director resigns; board appoints interim leader

    Detroit — The Detroit Land Bank Authority board on Friday unanimously accepted the resignation of its executive director, Saskia Thompson, and appointed the deputy executive to serve in her role.

    During a special meeting Friday morning, the Land Bank’s Board of Directors approved the transition plan 5-0, appointing Tammy Daniels to serve as interim executive director. 

    Thompson leaves the land bank after four years, “moving on to other opportunities,” the board said. 

    Erica Ward Gerson, the organization’s board chair, wished Thompson well in her endeavors.

    “We’re entering an exciting new phase at the land bank, where our focus can shift to offering enhanced opportunities for Detroiters to purchase our remaining structures, finding new and innovative uses for our vacant land holdings, and supporting our thousands of buyers through the renovation of their homes,” Gerson said in a statement following the meeting. “Because of her many years of experience in senior positions in so many areas of the DLBA, Tammy Daniels is ideally suited to lead us in these new undertakings.”

    Daniels joined the land bank as an attorney in 2015 and quickly became a part of the leadership team, serving as a deputy, then interim general counsel, demolition director and finally deputy executive director. 

    Tammy Daniels is serving as interim executive director of the Detroit Land Bank Authority after current Executive Director Saskia Thompson resigned Friday.

    She’s a graduate of the University of Michigan and University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. She also has a real estate background. 

    The board noted that Daniels has helped the land bank’s demolition program streamline operations and increase capacity in demolishing more than 15,000 structures.

    In 2018, she spoke on the city’s initiative to boost inclusion in demolition contracts, when about 28% of the contract dollars — or $48 million — had gone to women-owned or minority-owned businesses.

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