P17Donna VanderVries is in her 11th year as Equalization Director for Muskegon County and also contracts as an assessor for 13 local units within the county. Beyond Muskegon County, she is the contracted Equalization Director of Newaygo County and the Grant City Assessor.

As both an elected official and volunteer, Donna is active in her community. She ran for public office and was elected to the Portage District Library Board in 2014. Because she loves theatre as well as her community, she volunteers for various community organizations: from Broadway Grand Rapids to the Civic Theatre. She is also a graduate of multiple leadership programs including Muskegon in Focus, Leadership Kalamazoo, and Leadership in Times of Crisis.

Donna VanderVries posing with other members of the Appraisal Practices Board.

From the time she was a child teaching her toys to read, Donna loved learning and teaching. She has gone on to pursue those loves as a lifelong learner and educator. She graduated from Wright State University in 1982 with a BS in Accounting. After that, she worked in a Big 8 accounting firm for several years. She went on to obtain her Masters of Tax at the University of Cincinnati.

Still, Donna had always dreamed of becoming an attorney and so she fulfilled that dream. She graduated from The Ohio State University 4th in her class in 1989. Donna practiced law at a large Grand Rapids, Michigan law firm for several years. She followed this by turning to assessing. First with the City of Grand Rapids where she worked for almost 17 years and currently works with Muskegon County.

Donna has taught at various Michigan colleges – teaching classes on accounting, tax, and business law. She also teaches assessing courses and publishes articles in her spare time.  As she always wants to learn more, Donna continues to collect professional designations, receiving her PPS in 2018.

Not afraid to be different!

When she is not teaching, learning, volunteering, or assessing, Donna is an avid reader, traveler, and diehard sports fan. You can find her cheering for the Cincinnati Reds and The Ohio State Buckeyes (even now that she lives in Michigan).