Former White House Aide Joins RACER Trust Team
YPSILANTI, MI — Thomas Kerr, a former senior advisor to the White House Council on Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers, has been named Director of Governmental Affairs for the RACER Trust. Mr. Kerr’s appointment was announced today by Elliott P. Laws, the Court-appointed Trustee of the RACER Trust.
Mr. Kerr will lead RACER’s outreach to local, state and federal officials, with a special focus on elected leaders in local communities across 14 states where RACER owns 89 former GM properties. The Trust was created by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to take ownership of, clean up, and position for redevelopment and sale former GM properties left behind in the automaker’s 2009 bankruptcy.
RACER is one of the largest holders of industrial property in the United States and the largest environmental response and remediation trust in U.S. history. When it was formed, the RACER Trust owned more than 44 million square feet of industrial space in 66 buildings on 7,000 acres.
Mr. Kerr has worked for U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis; U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she was a United States Senator from New York; former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm and former Wayne County (MI) Executive Ed McNamara. He is a former director of external affairs at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Mr. Kerr graduated from Michigan State University.
His experience has encompassed community affairs, business outreach, and political affairs on regional, statewide and national levels.
“Tom’s experience in working closely with elected officials at all levels and his expertise in finding collaborative solutions to complex problems will be a tremendous asset for the Trust,” said Mr. Laws. “Our goal is to find qualified, responsible buyers who will work with local communities to transform these properties and create new jobs and new economic opportunity as soon as possible.”
Mr. Kerr said he was looking forward to his new role.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to make a real difference for people and communities hurt by the closing of automotive plants,” Mr. Kerr said. “There are real opportunities for economic growth and job creation in these communities, and I’m pleased to be a part of this team that is working on practical solutions to turn that potential into reality.”