KCRC Announces Managing Director Steve Warren’s Retirement
After 35 years at the Kent County Road Commission, Managing Director Steve Warren will retire, effective October 1.
"After dedicating most of my career to improving the roads of Kent County, it has been rewarding to play a role in fostering the collaborative relationships that define Kent County. I take pride in KCRC’s dedication to working with partners at the state and local levels to facilitate solutions during times of emergency and in planning for our community's county road network.”
Warren joined KCRC in 1988 and was named managing director in 2013. Prior to the road commission, Warren was director of the Metropolitan Transportation Planning Organization for the Grand Rapids area and worked as the transportation planner with the Northwest Regional Planning Commission in Traverse City.
In addition to providing comprehensive administrative leadership over the last ten years, Warren managed KCRC’s long and short-range strategic planning programs, established an integrated asset management program, and spearheaded several major improvement projects. The road commission’s new state-of-the-art central complex at 1900 4 Mile Road came to fruition under his vision and direction.
Warren is a long-standing board member of the County Road Association (CRA), having previously served terms as both president and vice president. He is also a founding member of Michigan’s Transportation Asset Management Council and previously served as chairman of both the Transportation Policy Committee and Regional Geographic Information System (REGIS) for the Grand Valley Metro Council.
“Steve's legacy at KCRC will have a lasting impact on Kent County's transportation,” said Rob VerHeulen, KCRC’s board chair. “His adept strategic planning has steered KCRC through economic challenges and the complexities of COVID-19, exemplifying integrity, adaptability, and resilience for our team and Michigan counterparts. His leadership has not only driven our success but also influenced road agencies statewide.”
Pictured: Steve Warren during the construction of the new Central Complex at 1900 4 Mile Road NW, Walker, MI
Jerry Byrne, KCRC’s deputy managing director of operations, will assume the role of KCRC’s new managing director, effective October 1. Byrne has over 40 years of experience at KCRC, overseeing the maintenance division and local road construction for over 20 years.
In his current position, Byrne has actively collaborated with the KCRC management team, focusing on various critical areas such as budgeting, equipment management, community outreach, policy and procedure development, as well as road maintenance and improvement planning and execution. His efforts have been instrumental in ensuring that departmental objectives and daily operations align with KCRC's overarching strategic plan.
Throughout his tenure, Byrne has also fostered invaluable relationships with the Michigan Department of Transportation, Kent County Emergency Response, townships, and neighboring jurisdictions, playing a pivotal role in resource planning and coordination during emergency response and collaborative road maintenance initiatives.
“Jerry’s dedication to what we do and relationship-building skills are unmatched. I have no doubt that under his leadership, the road commission will continue to uphold its mission and values with great success,” said Warren.
"After working in various positions at the road commission, I look forward to this new opportunity, and I’m eager to continue to serve the motorists and residents of Kent County, helping to lead this great organization,” said Byrne. “I'm continually inspired by the commitment of KCRC’s exceptional staff and crew, and I'm confident that, working with our partners, we will continue to improve our county road network for benefit of our community.”
Pictured: Jerry Byrne, who will assume the role of managing director on October 1.