Reeves, Triette Lipsey 1963–

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Triette Lipsey Reeves 1963


At a Glance


As a full-term member of the Michigan State House of Representatives, Triette Reeves got her seat through earnest political avenues. While paying her dues, Reeves earned her seat in the state house in the blue-collar fashion typical of her Detroit district. She served a temporary term in the House before her full-term and answered a call for divine commitment in the process.

Born Triette E. Lipsey on August 22, 1963 in Detroit, Michigan, Reeves went on to graduate from Redford High School in 1982. Upon graduation, she would enroll, attend and graduate from Michigan State University, earning a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Public Administration with a minor in Economics. After graduating from Michigan State, Reeves accepted an appointment to serve as Legislative Aide to former State Representative Teola P. Hunter in the 5th House District.

In 1992, Reeves served a partial term in the State House of Representatives. Representative Teola Hunter had resigned her post in the mid-term. At that time, Republican Governor John Engler attempted to capitalize on the now-empty Democratic seat in the 110-member House of Representatives. Engler was slow to call a special election in a timely manner. As long as the seat was vacant, the Democrats would be short one vote.

Reeves, however, did not let that happen. She immersed herself in the 5th District and, according to the Michigan House of Representatives Democratic Caucus web site, rallied members of the Detroit community in protest against the 5th District seat vacancy forcing Governor Engler to call the Special Election. Her efforts paid off when she was elected by voters in that district to substitute for Hunter in the remainder of the term.

Reevess political experience in both Detroit and the State House of Representatives continued to be varying and impressive. Demonstrating what would be her own savvy as it relates to Detroit politics, Reeves successfully managed the campaign of U.S. Congressman John Conyerss re-election effort in 1994. She then served as Public Affairs Coordinator for Democratic Speaker Curtis Hertels Detroit Democratic Caucus.

Reeves continued to fortify her presence in Detroit Democratic politics by working in various circles. Reeves continued memberships in organizations like the Young Dems and the NAACP Young Adult Committee. Working directly with those groups, Reeves managed the city-wide collective for the get-out-the-vote effort in the successful 1996 Bill Clinton/Al Gore Democratic campaign for the presidency. She took on added responsibilities in 1995 by becoming the Community Affairs Coordinator within the Detroit City Council from 1995-1998.

Coincidentally, those two specific years1995 and 1998would prove to be not the only the most important of her political career, but crucial times in her personal life as well. In 1995, the same year she took her position within the Detroit City Council, Reeves

At a Glance

Born Triette E. Lipsey on August 22, 1963; married Alando Reeves, April of 1995; children: sons Isaac and Tilon, daughter, Karmel Education: Michigan State University, B.A. in Public Administration with a minor in Economics.

Career: Legislative Aide to former Michigan State Representative Teola P. Hunter; partial term in Michigan House of Representatives, 1992; managed the of U.S. Congressman John Conyers, 1994; Community Affairs Coordinator, Detroit City Council, 1995-98; ordained minister, 1995; Michigan State House of Representatives, 1998-.

Addresses: OfficeTriette Reeves, District 13, 14050 Rutherford, Detroit, Ml 48227.

began to embark on a personal and spiritual journey that would forever change her mind, her heart, and the way she lived. It was June of 1995 when Reeves received a call to the ministry. Upon answering her spiritual call, Reeves became a licensed and ordained minister. As a minister, she shared the Gospel at her place of worship, Detroit-based True Believers. Evangelizing to worshipers and preaching the word of God are not her only duties at True Believers. In addition to leading praise and worship in the church, Reeves also serves as Business Elder, working within the womens ministry. It was that attention to womens issues within the church that would seep into her political agenda down the road.

Planting herself firmly in the church, Reeves encountered another milestone in 1995 when she married Alando Reeves in April of that year. Since then, she has become the proud mother of daughter, Karmel, and sons, Isaac and Tilon.

In 1998, Detroiters in the 13th House District voted Reeves back to the House of Representatives for her first full term. The 1998 class of the Michigan House of Representatives showed a never-before seen level of diversity on the states legislative level. Of the crop of lawmakers, 14 were African-Americans, the highest number the Michigan legislature has seen. For Reeves, one of six African-American women serving constituents in that term, issues and how they relate to women and children quickly became her strong suit.

Reeves sits on several committees, including Health Policy, Local Government and Urban Policy, and Transportation. However, while much of her responsibility has been geared toward those bodies, Reeves has introduced a number of bills that center around crimes related to children, senior citizens, human services, health insurance, and other related issues. Some of the bills Reeves has worked through the House have included a bill prohibiting the property sale of low-income senior citizens if they become delinquent on their property taxes and a bill elevating punishment for stalking crimes by taking into consideration prior convictions for domestic assault or malicious phone calls. Reeves has also introduced legislation requiring hospitals to allow pregnant women a choice between a physician and a nurse midwife and requiring health insurance companies to cover nurse midwives. In addition, Reeves has introduced a bill requiring physicians to obtain parental consent before treating a minor.

Additionally, Reeves has not only spent considerable time serving constituents in her district, but throughout the state as well. In May of 2000 Reeves and another state representative traveled throughout Michigan to attend hearings in eight cities. Those forums allowed voters to voice their opinions on how the state is faring with health care policies. We hear of some successes, however it became increasingly evident from those in attendance, that our system of health care, specifically as it relates to mothers and children, could use some fine tuning, Reeves stated in a press release on the Michigan House of Representatives Democratic Caucus web site.

Reeves helped host additional forums throughout her term, helping to bolster her commitment to improving health care for women and children in Michigan. By taking conventional, pay-your-dues routes to the political arena, and at the same time answering a call from God, Triette Reeves has committed herself to serving not only on the legislative level, but in a divine fashion as well.


A Citizens Guide to State Government, pg. 14-15


Additional information was obtained on-line at the Michigan House of Representative Democratic Caucus web site, and the Michigan Legislature web site,

John Horn