HomeBad Ass AsiansFirst Asian Am appointed to Grand Rapids City Commission in Michigan

First Asian Am appointed to Grand Rapids City Commission in Michigan

Bing Goei, an Asian American businessman, was unanimously selected to fill the Grand Rapids Third Ward commissioner position in Michigan

Goei was sworn in on Tuesday at the Grand Rapids City Commission meeting and will serve as commissioner for eight months.

Late last year, the Grand Rapids City Council was on the hunt for a replacement after Nathaniel Moody resigned for personal reasons.

According to M LIVE, the application for the role opened up in January with thirteen people applying. Of those applicants, only seven were eligible. The council then narrowed it down to three men: Goei, John Karjewski, and Marshall Kilgore. Karjewski is the Hopkins Elementary principal and Kilgore is the director of engagement of the West Michigan Environmental Action Council.

On March 5 the council began the interview process, before choosing Goei on March 19.

Mayor Rosalyn Bliss expressed gratitude for the Committee’s quick action in filling Moody’s spot. “This has been a transparent and thoughtful process, and I am grateful for members of our Committee on Appointments for their work,” Bliss said.

She continued to applaud Goei for his new role and said “I also congratulate Mr. Goei on his selection as our next Their Ward commissioner. He has been an active member our of community for decades and I trust he will represent the residents of the Third Ward to the best of his ability.”

Goei, 75, has lived in Grand Rapids for 64 years and owns two businesses, Eastern Floral and the Goei Center. He will now serve the Third Ward alongside Kelsey Perdue until his seat opens back up next fall.

“It will be an honor and a privilege to represent the Third Ward,” Goei said in his application. “I’m blessed to be at a stage in my life which will allow me to provide the necessary time to listen to and serve the residents of the Third Ward.”

Wood TV also reports that his application outlined his main goals: reduce poverty and attract more investments.

Once Goei’s eight months conclude, he said that he has no plans to run again for the full four-year term. But, his past opponents, Karjewski and Kilgore have expressed continued interest in the Third Ward commissioner position.

So far, Karjewski is the only person to officially file for the role, while Kilgore has only announced his plans to file.

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