Governor Appoints Director of Office of Outdoor Recreation Industry

September 2019 News Web Exclusive

Michigan is joining the national ranks to promote the outdoor recreation industry by appointing full-time Director Brad Garmon to the office last week in a presentation by Governor Whitmer.

Patti Smith, VP of Silver Spray Sports in Fenton, Mich., and Chairperson of the Michigan Boating Industries Association, represents the boating industry on the Outdoor Recreation Advisory Council, now responsible for making recommendations to the Office.

“The state of Michigan has so many boating opportunities to offer with the Great Lakes, and more than 11,000 inlands lakes,” said Smith. “The recreation opportunities in Michigan are endless, I’m happy to be on the Outdoor Recreation Advisory Council to represent boating, a big business in Michigan with a large economic impact of $7.8 billion each year.”

According to a recent study by the Outdoor Industry Association, outdoor recreation generates $26.6 billion in consumer spending in Michigan each year.  Sixty-three percent of Michigan residents participate in outdoor recreation, and Michigan residents are more likely to participate in boating and camping than the average American. Nationally, outdoor recreation spending outranks pharmaceuticals and motor vehicles and parts.

Michigan has nearly 1 million registered boats on file.

According to the Michigan DNR, the Outdoor Recreation Advisory Council also makes recommendations to the DNR and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation on ways to improve partnerships, collaborative strategies and policies that will increase the outdoor recreation economy, employment and consumer spending, and support conservation and public recreation assets. Members are appointed jointly by the DNR director and NRC chair.

The Michigan Boating Industries Association is a non-profit trade association representing more than 350 marine businesses and serves as the voice for Michigan’s $7.8 billion marine industry.  MBIA is dedicated to the advancement, promotion and protection of recreational boating in Michigan.  For more information about the MBIA call 734.261.0123 or visit

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