Mackinac Center for Public Policy Director of Labor Policy Robert P. Hunter has accepted a position on a U.S. Department of Labor panel that will direct the department's research for national worker training programs. The panel will develop a five-year plan, including research, demonstration and pilot programs, priorities, and evaluations.

The research plan will identify the potential research and evaluation efforts that will assist the department in carrying out workforce development programs under the Workforce Investment Act, and will focus primarily on setting an agenda for applied research and demonstration topic areas that endeavor to test different approaches and determine the best courses of action for the Department of Labor. The information developed under the plan should prove useful for the administration and lawmakers.

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Hunter will be joining experts such as Robert Rector of The Heritage Foundation, Ron Haskins of the Brookings Institution, and Dr. Barbara Bolin of the Michigan Department of Career Development. Officials from four other states will round out the panel.

"I am looking forward to working with this panel," Hunter said. "There are a number of ways we can improve the efficiency of the services provided under the Workforce Investment Act to further benefit Michiganians, allowing us to maintain services while reducing the burdens this program puts on the taxpayers of Michigan and the nation as a whole."

Hunter served on the National Labor Relations Board from 1981-1985 under President Ronald Reagan.