Wayne Schmidt grew up in downtown Traverse City, and graduated from Traverse City Central High School in 1984. He attended the University of Chicago, majoring in economics and public policy and is a graduate of the prestigious Michigan Political Leadership Program at Michigan State University.
After helping to reopen the Park Place Hotel in 1991 and a subsequent stint on the management team at the Grand Traverse Resort, Wayne served as general manager of the Captain’s Quarters men’s clothing store in Traverse City. He was elected five times to the Grand Traverse County Board of Commissioners; on the commission he had terms as vice chair and chair of the board.
State Representative Wayne Schmidt was first elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in November of 2008 and served for three consecutive terms prior to becoming state Senator. He was chair of the House Transportation and Infrastructure committee, vice chair of the Michigan Capitol Committee, and also serves on the Commerce (which he chaired during the 2011-2012 session), Energy and Technology, and Financial Liability Reform committees.
In November of 2014, Senator Schmidt was elected to serve the people of the 37th district. He is currently chair of Commerce committee, vice chair of Economic Development and International Investment, and also serves on Agriculture, Insurance, and Outdoor Recreation and Tourism committees.
Committed to service, Wayne Schmidt has given his time and efforts to many community organizations. He has been a member of the Boardman Neighborhood Association, the Traverse City Kiwanis Club, the Economic Club of Traverse, the National Cherry Festival and the Downtown Traverse City Association. As a devoted family man, Wayne has been involved with the Grand Traverse Area Right to Life Association and Big Brothers/Big Sisters. An avid sportsman, Schmidt is a member of the National Rifle Association, National Wild Turkey Federation, Ruffed Grouse Society, Ducks Unlimited and Trout Unlimited.
In his quest to improve Michigan, Wayne led the charge to pass legislation that streamlined government regulation and promoted job creation. He helped to create a leaner, more efficient government bureaucracy. He worked to design and pass a responsible budget, which turned a $1.5 billion deficit into a $500 million surplus and reduced Michigan’s debt by over $20 billion. Wayne championed additional, stable funding for the extremely successful Pure Michigan campaign, which has vastly benefited businesses in northern Michigan. Schmidt has also supported legislation that would cut legislator and staff pay and benefits, and reduce office budgets.
Wayne Schmidt lives in Traverse City with his wife Kathleen, and their two boys, Ryan and Danny.
Wayne was raised in northern Michigan. He and his wife Kathleen currently live in Traverse City with their two children, Ryan and Danny.
He is currently chair of Commerce committee, vice chair of Economic Development and International Investment, and also serves on Agriculture, Insurance, and Outdoor Recreation and Tourism committees.
Attended the University of Chicago, majoring in economics and public policy and is a graduate of the Michigan State University Political Leadership Program.
Served as general manager of the Captain’s Quarters men’s clothing store in Traverse City, and was elected five times to the Grand Traverse County Board of Commissioners. On the commission he had terms as vice chair and chairman of the board.
Past Public Offices and Affiliations
Former State Representative (2009-2013), Grand Traverse County Economic Development Corporation and Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee, Bay Area Transit Authority, Michigan Association of Counties Human Services Committee (served as chairman), Grand Traverse County Land Use & Transportation Study Group – Grand Vision, Grand Traverse County Republican Party (served as vice-chairman and membership chairman), Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Northwest Michigan, National Cherry Festival Board, National Rifle Association, Ducks Unlimited, Trout Unlimited, National Wild Turkey Federation, Ruffed Grouse Society, Economic Club of Traverse City, Kiwanis Noon Club, Boardman Neighborhood Association, Great Lakes Community Mental Health Authority (vice-chair), Traverse City Zoning Board of Appeals Chairman, Downtown Traverse City Association.