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2021 Michiganians of the Year: Giving so much of themselves to make our lives better

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Another very difficult year for Michigan was made more tolerable by the selflessness and skill of the people who live in this great state.

Again this year, The Detroit News is honoring some of the folks who have given so much of themselves to better the lives of their fellow residents.

The 2021 Class of Michiganians of the Year is comprised of 10 remarkable individuals — and one company — who have distinguished themselves in a variety of fields.

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The 2021 Class of Michiganians of the Year is comprised of 10 remarkable individuals — and one company — who have distinguished themselves in a variety of fields.

Included in the group is a man who is leading Michigan's oldest automaker into an exciting new future. And another CEO who is building a mortgage powerhouse in Pontiac, while at the same time helping to revive that city.

We also honor the labor leader who brought his union out of a corruption scandal that threatened its independence. And a state lawmaker who stood up to his own party and for the integrity of Michigan's electoral system. 

Among the class is a physician who has worked a lifetime to improve the health and welfare of southwest Detroiters. Also in the ranks is a northern Michigan woman who, though pregnant, risked her own safety to save three children from drowning in a storm-struck lake.

We honor a distinguished artist who is defying age to produce the most creative work of her career and a university softball coach who is the best in her field.

There's also the chef who passed on cooking in the most elite restaurants to serve his food to those on the streets.

We recognize with gratitude both the physician who guided Michigan through the greatest health crisis in its history, and the company that produced the miracle to vanquish that pandemic.

We salute these 2021 Michiganians of the Year: 

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