Snyder taps veteran journalist Meegan Holland as communications director

LANSING, MI – Meegan Holland, a veteran journalist with long-standing ties to Lansing, has been named the Director of Communications for Gov. Rick Snyder.Meegan Holland

Holland brings more than 30 years of journalism experience in Michigan, including 20 years directing legislative and political coverage for the eight Booth newspapers. She played a key role in the chain’s expansion to a digital presence with MLive.

“Meegan has long been a respected journalist in Lansing and across the state,” Snyder said. “She’s also been a leader in the industry’s transformation, with a great understanding of the needs and challenges of today’s journalists as we tell the Michigan story in new and different ways. Her passion and experience will make her an important part of our team.”

Holland started her career with newspapers in Greenville and Port Huron, Mich., and Rockford, Ill. before heading the Booth News Service, which covered statewide issues and government for The Grand Rapids Press, The Flint Journal, The Kalamazoo Gazette, The Saginaw News, The Bay City Times, The Muskegon Chronicle and The Jackson Citizen-Patriot.

Holland became The Grand Rapids Press’ online editor in 2007, and in 2012 returned to Lansing to head MLive’s Capitol/Lansing Hub. Earlier this year she joined Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s communications team.

“I’ve always wanted to make a difference in our state and I’m excited by the idea of working with Gov. Snyder to keep Michiganders informed about such crucial issues as public education in Detroit, Michigan’s energy future and our state’s ongoing economic growth,” Holland said.

A Cadillac native, Holland has a bachelor’s degree from Kalamazoo College and lives in East Lansing. She’s very active in the region’s arts community. Holland replaces Jarrod Agen, who will become Gov. Snyder’s chief of staff. She starts on Dec. 7.

Holland will work closely with Dave Murray, who Snyder named press secretary earlier this month to replace Sara Wurfel, who is leaving at the end of November to become vice president for public affairs at Truscott Rossman, a statewide public relations firm.

Communications staffers Laura Biehl and Anna Heaton have been named deputy press secretaries.

Biehl has been a communications manager on Snyder’s staff since July 2014. Prior to joining the administration, Biehl worked for the Rock Ventures/Quicken Loans Family of Companies managing public relations efforts for its growing real estate portfolio in Detroit. She also worked at the state House of Representatives and Lambert, Edwards & Associates. Biehl lives in DeWitt and earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from Michigan State University.

Heaton has worked as public relations advisor for the administration since April. She formerly served as deputy director of communications for the state House Republican Caucus under Speaker Kevin Cotter and deputy press secretary under Speaker Jase Bolger. Prior to her work in the state House, Heaton worked on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. as a staff member for U.S. Rep. Candice Miller, R-Harrison Township, and a policy adviser for U.S. Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite, R-Tampa. Heaton lives in Lansing and has a bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University.

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