LANSING (WWJ/AP) – Rodney Stokes is leaving his job as director of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to become Gov. Rick Snyder’s point man on the administration’s vibrant cities initiative.

Snyder said in a statement Thursday Stokes’ appointment is effective July 9.

As the governor’s special adviser, Stokes will work with cities on projects such as ensuring the availability of quality green space and enhancing recreational opportunities.

Snyder says Stokes “has the talent and experience” to cultivate Michigan cities’ “unique natural and man-made assets” to help “attract families and visitors, retain talented workers, encourage investment and enhance our overall quality of life.”

Stokes was one of Snyder’s first cabinet appointees after his 2010 election.

He began his professional career with the DNR in 1977 and held several leadership positions within the agency.

“I am excited to take a lead role in fostering more vibrant urban communities,” Stokes said, in a statement. “I firmly believe that great states have great cities, just as great states nurture and protect their natural resources. This appointment affords me one more opportunity to make Michigan a more dynamic, inviting place to be.”

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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