Matt Collier for Congress

About Matt

Matt Collier has a classic Mid-Michigan story of hard work, service… and hockey.

Michigan Roots

Matt's grandfather worked the line at Flint’s original Buick plant. One day he lost two fingers on the production line, and after being rushed to the hospital he returned to work that very same afternoon out of fear of losing his job. Matt’s other grandfather lived through the Sit-Down Strike at GM’s Fisher One plant and the legitimization of the UAW. Both were original members of the UAW as Michigan’s middle class was born.

After serving as a bomber pilot in World War II, Matt’s dad also worked for GM at AC Spark Plug in Flint, benefiting from the rising wages and workplace safety that the union provided.

Hard Work and Service

Matt and his four brothers learned the meaning of hard work and service from their father and their mother, a nurse. Their parents taught them that their community and their country were worth fighting for.

A talented hockey player, Matt passed up an offer to go to Princeton and went to West Point instead. He wanted to serve. He became an elite Airborne-Ranger and left the Army with the rank of Captain after six years of service.

Congressman Dale Kildee recruited Matt back home where he served as Kildee’s district director running constituency services for the district.

Mayor of Flint

But after watching Flint struggle in the late 1980s, Matt decided to serve in a different way. He ran for mayor on a platform of change--and won. In four years, he helped bring the unemployment rate down from over 23% to nearly 7%, balanced the budget and dramatically reduced crime.

Creating Hundreds of Jobs

Knowing that he wanted to return to public service one day, Matt attended the John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard to earn a master’s degree in public administration.

He was then recruited into the private sector, leading software and other technology companies while creating hundreds of jobs.

Department of Veterans Affairs

But Matt’s commitment to his fellow Veterans—and service—never wavered.

In 2015, Matt served as a President Obama appointee to the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, where he led public-private partnerships for the agency. His work built the first public-private VA hospital, raised nearly $500 million for Veterans, improved care for Veterans with cancer and brain injuries, and improved Veteran access for mental healthcare.

Continuing to Work for Veterans

Matt has continued his work for Veterans. Combining his private and public experience he founded a company to fill transitional healthcare gaps and treatment while serving as a board member for the Concussion Legacy Foundation (CLF), as well as the National Association of Veteran Education and Research Foundations (NAVREF).

Matt has four children, five grandchildren and lives in Flint.

Matt Collier
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