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Michigan WWI Centennial Commission



Dennis  Dennis Skupinski of Ann Arbor is retired and a World War 1 Aficionado . He has been leading the effort to commemorate the centennial of World War I in Michigan by producing Michigan’s World War I Centennial News Report since June of 2012 and being the state representative to the U.S. World War 1 Centennial Commission. Skupinski attended the U.S. Military Academy and holds a bachelor’s degree in science from Michigan State University.

Vice Chair

download   Mark Sutton of Eaton Rapids is the public relations director of the American Legion Department of Michigan and the president of the Michigan American Legion Foundation. He holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from Walsh College.


shelly1 357x300  Shelly Kasprzycki of Jackson is the executive director of the Michigan Humanities Council, where she works with the board of directors to connect people, grants, programs, and communities to create quality cultural programs. She holds a bachelor’s degree in health administration from Eastern Michigan University and a master’s degree in public health education from Central Michigan University.


 joseph calvaruso trustee 80

Joseph Calvaruso of Galesburg is the executive director of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation. He holds a bachelor’s degree in management and economics from Albion College and a master’s degree in finance from Western Michigan University.



Christopher Causley of Eastpointe is employed by the Federal Government and is a founding member and president of the Michigan Military Technical and Historical Society Museum in Eastpointe, Michigan. He holds an associate’s degree in automotive technology from Macomb Community College and a bachelor’s degree in military history from the American Military University.



 John (Jack) Dempsey of Plymouth is a member of Dickinson Wright PLLC and a member of the Michigan Historical Commission. He holds a bachelor’s degree in social and political science from Michigan State University and a law degree from George Washington University. He also had a grandfather who serve during World War 1 in the U.S. Navy.


IMG 0315 Edwin Fogarty of Hillsdale is an adjunct mathematics instructor at Jackson College and the great-nephew of a World War I veteran. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and psychology from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in mathematics and statistics from Wayne State University.

 David Hale

David Hales of Farmington Hills is a social studies consultant for Wayne Regional Educational Service Agency where he supports K-12 teachers and schools in social studies curriculum, instruction, or assessment. He previously served on the War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission. Hales holds a bachelor’s degree in social studies and language arts and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Michigan State University.

 Ken Hibl of Clare has served as the Clare city manager for nearly 20 years and previously served 31 years of active service in the United States Army. He holds a bachelor’s degree in professional aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and is a graduate of the U.S. Army War College and the U.S. Army Installation Management Course.

Denny Olson

 Dennis (Denny) Olson of Quinnesec served as Breitung Charter Township Supervisor for 14 years and is chair of the Dickinson County Township Association. He is a board member of the Michigan Township Association, the Great Lakes Timber Professional Association, and the Michigan Association of Timberman. He is the owner and operator of Olson Sand and Gravel, owns and operates a log truck, and is a U.S. Army veteran who served in the Vietnam War.



James Spurr of Portage is a senior partner at Miller, Canfield, Paddock and Stone, PLC. He has 36 years of experience practicing law and previously served on the Michigan War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission. He is the president of the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society and serves on the board of trustees of the Michigan Maritime Museum. Spurr holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and a law degree from Wayne State University Law School.

Mike verhulst

Mike VerHulst of Grand Haven is the Exhibits Facilitator for the Tri-Cities Historical Museum in Grand Haven and has been curating exhibits since 2014.  Mike holds a bachelor’s degree in history and museum studies from Central Michigan University and his latest exhibit is titled Courage Without Fear: The Red Arrow Division in World War I.  The exhibit focuses on West Michigan’s contributions to the war and the role the Red Arrow Division played in securing victory for the allies.

Mark Wilson

 Mark Wilson of Evart is the Public Works Director for the City of Evart, Mark is a former United States Army infantryman who has been a longtime advocate for historical preservation with an emphasis on cemetery and gravestone preservation, and restoration.  Mark provides hands on workshops as well as educational presentations on gravestone and cemetery preservation for municipal and private organizations. Mark is intimately involved with local history and Historical Societies, and in addition to his extensive service and dedication to history, Mark is a lifetime member of the VFW, and AMVETS organization.

Members will serve terms expiring Dec. 31, 2018.