Phil's Column

Phil Power is the founder and chairman of the Center for Michigan. 


Paying Jim Harbaugh millions to coach U-M makes business sense

January 6, 2015 | Phil Power

Even at $5 million a year, hiring a big-name coach like Harbaugh – especially one the fan base thinks will walk on water – makes enormous sense when you consider ticket sales and Harbaugh’s professed interest in academics as well as football talent.

Detroit rescued by great leaders who kept showing up

December 16, 2014 | Phil Power

A cast of judges, lawyers and politicians united by a shared sense of responsibility helped usher the city through bankruptcy with remarkable speed.

Transforming Detroit into a city that (also) works

November 18, 2014 | Phil Power

By giving residents a point person in their district to solve problems, Detroit finally may be moving beyond the frustrating bureaucracy of generations past.

When Republicans have everything, will they have enough?

November 11, 2014 | Phil Power

Republicans must quell disputes inside their own caucus and govern in a way that avoids the sin of overreach.

Why Bridge Magazine will never endorse candidates

November 4, 2014 | Phil Power

Our work rests in the integrity of our journalism and the trust this earns with our readers. We do not want to do anything to be regarded as biased or partisan.

Commoditizing politics and football

October 28, 2014 | Phil Power

When campaigns are driven by dark money and college sports are “branded” like Viagra, society dies just a bit

Across Michigan, groups are daring to collaborate

October 21, 2014 | Phil Power

From building workforce skills to economic development, Michigan works best when groups inside and outside government share smart ideas.

Slamming the door on political ads

October 7, 2014 | Phil Power

Both parties rightly complain of national party poo-bahs and bored billionaires messing with their effort to make their campaigns locally relevant to Michigan voters. Exhibit A: the wedding dress.

Detroit leaders display the art of governance

September 30, 2014 | Phil Power

Retiring Congressman John Dingell says his biggest accomplishments over nearly six decades in Washington were brought about by bringing people together for the public good. That same philosophy is now playing out in Detroit.

Serious problems demand serious, experienced politicians

September 23, 2014 | Phil Power

Michigan’s future leaders could do worse than to take part in the Michigan Political Leadership Program to hone their skills as capable public servants.

A dark-money cloud obscures issues that matter in Michigan

September 16, 2014 | Phil Power

Who’s supporting the candidates running for office? How much are they investing in the outcome? Right now, we can only guess about much of it.

A new president, a noble history

September 9, 2014 | Phil Power

Friday’s inauguration of Dr. Mark S. Schlissel at the University of Michigan was a moving demonstration of hope for our future.

Three years in, Bridge delivers the goods on public policy

September 4, 2014 | Phil Power

Bridge is making good on its promise of fact-based, trustworthy, nonpartisan news and thoughtful analysis of the people’s business.

Hosannas to Free Press for exposing charter failings

July 15, 2014 | Phil Power

What’s the sense in financially supporting charter schools if they are not producing better educational outcomes than the failing traditional public schools students are leaving behind?

The only cherry pie recipe you’ll need this summer

July 8, 2014 | Phil Power

Tracing family roots to Michigan’s unparalleled sour cherry harvest.

What Michigan voters (really) want

June 24, 2014 | Phil Power

Polls are a snapshot of public attitudes, but the state’s 2014 political candidates need the “Michigan Speaks” report to grasp what’s driving voters this election year.

A path through the political thicket for Bridge journalism

June 17, 2014 | Phil Power

This publication’s reporting – and the Center for Michigan’s engagement work – led to two big wins for Michigan’s school children. Excuse us if we brag a little bit.

Has the tide finally turned for Michigan?

June 10, 2014 | Phil Power

The case for cautious optimism for our state, which finally seems to be moving in the right direction.

Now, let’s fix the rest of Michigan

June 3, 2014 | Phil Power

Beyond Detroit, Michigan’s entire system of financing local government is tottering on the brink of collapse.