Former Civil Rights Commission chair, Matt Wesaw, has been chosen to lead the Michigan Department of Civil Rights.

Commissioners say Wesaw rose to the top among the four finalists primarily because of his background with the department and his focus on employee morale and organization.

A former Department of State Police trooper and detective sergeant, Wesaw replaced Kelvin Scott as chair of the Civil Rights commission in 2009 when Scott was chosen to head the Civil Rights Department.

Wesaw served on the commission until earlier this year. Wesaw also served as tribal chair of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians and was in that position in 1996 when the tribe joined a lawsuit to force the state to enter a compact that would allow it to open a casino.