BY COLIN MACDOUGALL
Jason Morgan, Washtenaw Community College’s director of government and community liaison, is embarking on his campaign for the office of Washtenaw County Commissioner.
Morgan has been working for WCC for three years and his job entails managing WCC’s relationships with the external community in Washtenaw County. That means keeping in contact with local, state and federal elected officials in regards to different community college issues.
“What my role at WCC is, is to make sure WCC is being a really great community partner and working with our community leaders and elected officials.”
Morgan first got to know the college while working in now-retired Congressman John Dingell’s office. WCC President Rose Bellanca asked Morgan if he would consider a position in government and community relations.
“After about the third time she asked me I realized she was serious in me coming to the college and I said, ‘Oh, well this is amazing. This is such a great place,’” Morgan said.
Morgan never truly planned on running for a public position, but kept the thought in the back of his mind. He always admired many of them though.
“I recently found a picture of me the other day when I was in fifth grade. It was ‘hero day’ and I was dressed as Bill Clinton,” Morgan said. He was the only public official in the room that day, whereas all his other classmates were dressed as sport stars and superheroes.
Morgan’s political fervor carried on into his time at Northern Michigan University, where he studied political science. While attending, he was involved in many student organizations, and eventually was elected student body president.
Currently, the position that Morgan is running for is the Washtenaw County Commissioner. Morgan will be representing the 8th District of the commission. The position is currently filled by Yousef Rahbi, who is leaving the position to run for State Legislature.
Morgan is well known in the Democratic community of Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County.
“Jason has the energy, drive and compassion needed to be an effective voice for Ann Arbor residents. I am eager to work with him to move our community forward,” said the Mayor of Ann Arbor, Christopher Taylor.
Jason has also earned the support of Felicia Brabec, a county commissioner representing the 4th District. She says, “Jason will bring a well-informed reasonable voice to the commission. I am excited he is joining us as we tackle important issues facing Washtenaw County.”
The Democratic primary for the election will take place this August with the general election in November. Morgan is currently running unopposed for the position.
He also currently serves on the board of directors and as the chair of public policy for the Jim Toy Community Center – a LGBT resource center for Washtenaw County. Morgan also serves on the executive committees of both the Ann Arbor Democratic Club and the Washtenaw County Democratic Party.
Morgan wakes up every morning to serve the community – a lesson he learned from John Dingell, he said.
“John Dingell was probably my best mentor,” Morgan said. “I think I get much of my value system in how to become a good elected official through John Dingell. He had a way of working with people that was inclusive and it was so intelligent.”
Morgan worked closely with the congressman, sometimes from six in the morning until 11 at night. Dingell instilled in Morgan that as a public servant he was subject to the needs of the people. Morgan wishes to follow in his footsteps and serve the people in his community as did Dingell.
“I always wondered how I would have a job where I went to work, got a paycheck and went home at the end of the day and had that be it,” Morgan said. “I want to be working on something that changes the world.”