Chatfield Out At Southwest Michigan First

Kalamazoo-based Southwest Michigan First has to get a new CEO. Former state House Speaker Lee Chatfield has resigned after several organizations pulled their support over his anti-gay views expressed while in the House. In a tweet, Chatfield said “for the betterment of the Kalamazoo community, the businesses that the board of directors represent, the staff at SWMF and for the sake of my conscience, please see the letter of resignation I offered this morning. I remain grateful for having had this incredible opportunity.” While serving in the House, he blocked a vote on legislation which would have expanded the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to cover the LGBTQ community. Chatfield also won election to the House in northern Michigan against an incumbent Republican because the incumbent supported the gay rights addition.