A Champion for Michigan's Auto Industry

Michigan is the not only the home of the auto industry, it is the leader in automotive technology. I want to make sure we continue to explore the use of technology to grow the industry, create better-paying jobs, and lead the world.
— Senator Mike Kowall

There is no congressional district in the nation more impacted by the auto industry than Michigan’s 11th District.  Cars – and the jobs they provide – are ingrained in the DNA of the people, small businesses, big businesses, and even the recreation, of the 11th District.

Senator Mike Kowall has been a champion of the Michigan auto industry throughout his career.  Named MichAuto 2014 Legislator of the Year, he authored SB 995, expanding autonomous vehicles beyond restricted testing to allow real-world development for all conditions.  He also authored SB 996, establishing critical standards, which serves as model legislation to ensure uniformity in production standards in every state.  In 2016, Governor Synder signed Mike’s bills into law and set the stage for automakers to invest more in the development of our innovation economy to make Southeast Michigan the technological leader for the future of the auto industry.  His efforts are creating better jobs for Michigan workers and a broader tax base to fund schools and local government.

As part of his efforts to expand autonomous vehicles development, Mike cleared the way for Uber, Lyft, and Google to establish facilities here in Michigan, creating more good-paying jobs and further establishing Michigan’s critical role in the U.S auto industry.


Detroit is where the automotive industry has really developed — very, very strong talent base; very strong companies — and Uber wants to be part of that.
— Uber vice president of Global Vehicle Programs Sherif Marakby

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In June of this year, the University of Michigan launched their first driverless shuttles on campus.  The two 11-passenger, all-electric shuttles travel at a top speed of 12 mph on UM’s North Campus while researchers continue to work to make the vehicles ready for more dense public roads in the future.  UM is the first college campus to deploy driverless shuttles on public roads.

Senator Mike Kowall

  • Founder and Chairman of the Michigan Legislative Automobile Caucus
  • Member of the Michigan Council on Future Mobility, developing policy to ensure that Michigan continues to be a world leader in automated, driverless, and connected vehicle technology
  • Michigan Manufacturers Association Legislator of the Year (2017)
  • MichAuto Legislator of the Year (2014, first time awarded)
  • Small Business Association of Michigan Legislator of the Year (2014)
  • Author of SB 995, expanding autonomous vehicles (signed into law 2016)
  • Author of SB 996, creating standards and model legislation (signed into law 2016)