KENTWOOD, Mich. (WZZM) -- The city commission Friday named Maurice Groce, a banking executive, to fill its open seat.
The commission held a special meeting Friday, at which members voted unanimously to recommend Groce for the second ward seat formerly held by Ray VerWys.
Groce will be sworn into office at the regularly-scheduled city commission meeting on February 7.
VerWys has a felony conviction record for embezzlement. On January 3 the commission voted to unseat VerWys from the second ward seat, using a city charter amendment approved by voters last November. The amendment mandated that anyone with a felony conviction could not hold an elected city office.
After ousting VerWys, the commission took applications for the open seat. Thirteen people applied, but only two finalists -- Groce and Betsy Artiz, were invited to Friday's special commission meeting for interviews.
According to the website LinkedIn.com, Groce is a vice president and branch manager for Mercantile Bank of Michigan.