Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer appoints Wayne County Airport Authority CEO Chad Newton to the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents

News Releases
Mar 05

YPSILANTI (March 5, 2021) – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer today announced the appointment of Chad Newton, Chief Executive Officer of the Wayne County Airport Authority, to the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents. 

The eight-member board is the governing body of the University.

Newton is a three-time EMU graduate, earning a bachelor’s degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice in 1996, and a master’s degree in Technology Studies with a Law Enforcement specialty in 2010. In 2014, he graduated from Eastern’s School of Police Staff and Command. In 2015, he graduated from the 262nd class of the FBI National Academy, and is a former member of the EMU Alumni Association Board of Directors.

In this role as CEO of the Wayne County Airport Authority, he is responsible for overseeing the independent governmental entity tasked with management and operation of Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport and Willow Run Airport, Michigan’s busiest airport system and one of the world’s leading air transportation hubs. 

Newton is the first-ever in his position to become certified as an Accredited Airport Executive, the highest accreditation granted to aviation professionals, among many other certifications. 

Newton has more than 21 years of airport experience and nearly 30 years as a law enforcement professional. At the age of 18, Newton, a Detroit native, left home and joined the United States Army. As a member of the Military Police, he served tours of duty in Seoul, South Korea and Fort Campbell, Kentucky. After being honorably discharged with the rank of Sergeant, he joined the Wayne County Sheriff’s Department as a Deputy Sheriff. 

In 1999, Newton transitioned to the Wayne County Airport Police Department, where he advanced through the ranks, becoming the Vice President of Public Safety for the Wayne County Airport Authority. In May 2018, he was assigned the additional responsibility of overseeing Willow Run Airport. Newton was appointed as CEO of the Wayne County Airport Authority in November 2018, after serving as Interim CEO beginning in July 2018.

He has shared his experience as a police officer, manager and administrator with future professionals by instructing a variety of courses at Concordia University and Henry Ford College.

“It is a huge honor to be selected by Governor Gretchen Whitmer to serve on the Eastern Michigan Board of Regents,” said Newton. “As a long-time alumnus, I am aware of the significant impact EMU has had in our region. I am excited for the opportunity to be part of the continued progress that EMU has achieved in its long history.” 

Eunice Jeffries, chair of the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents, said, “On behalf of all of the members of the Board of Regents, I welcome Chad Newton to our team. Chad will add his distinct perspective and exceptional skill set to what I view as an outstanding and diverse Board, with expertise in a variety of crucial areas. I have great respect for his distinguished background in law enforcement and service to the country. I look forward to working with Chad as we continue our efforts to support our students, faculty and staff and serve our community.” 

Eastern Michigan University President James Smith said, "I welcome the opportunity to work with Chad Newton. He brings a deep ability to manage complex organizations, plan ahead, and solve problems. That, combined with his comprehensive understanding of the University, makes him an excellent addition to our outstanding Board.”

Newton replaces former Regent Rich Baird, who resigned from the Board in January. Newton will fulfill the rest of Baird’s term, which will expire in December 2026. 

More information about the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents, including committee assignments and meetings schedule, can be found on the Board of Regents website.

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 16,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and, its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.

News Release: Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer appoints Wayne County Airport Authority CEO Chad Newton to the Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents - EMU Today (emich.edu)

Geoff Larcom
Executive Director, Media Relations Eastern Michigan University
Erica Donerson
Vice President, Communications and External Affairs
Wayne County Airport Authority
Media Relations Manager
Wayne County Airport Authority