Grand Rapids Chamber hires new director of government affairs

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Nate Henschel. Courtesy Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce

The Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce appointed its next director of government affairs.

The chamber said Tuesday, Dec. 7, it hired Nate Henschel to fill the role vacated by Alexa Kramer, who left the chamber in November to become director of government operations at the Small Business Association of Michigan.

He will report to Andy Johnston, vice president of government affairs, and primarily will focus on the issue areas of taxation, regulatory affairs, education and workforce development.

“We’re thrilled to have Nate join our team and look forward to welcoming him to the chamber community,” Johnston said. “Nate brings with him a wealth of public policy and political knowledge, and he will be a valuable asset for our members.”

Henschel has a background in government and advocacy work at the state and federal level. Prior to joining the chamber, he worked as district representative and community liaison for U.S. Rep. Fred Upton (R-Michigan’s 6th District). He also previously worked for former State Sen. Margaret O’Brien (R-Kalamazoo) as her legislative director in Lansing. In both roles, Henschel said he worked to “cut through government red tape, solve local issues through meaningful legislation and connect communities with their government.”

“I’m excited to join the chamber’s outstanding government affairs team and look forward to advocating on behalf of West Michigan businesses,” Henschel said. “The Grand Rapids Chamber has a reputation for ensuring that our businesses and communities thrive, and I can’t wait to roll up my sleeves and get the job done for our members.”

Henschel holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and communication studies from the University of Michigan.

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