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Rodney Cole named vice president of DTE Energy Foundation, and director of community engagement for public affairs, DTE Energy

April 07, 2021
Fourteen-year DTE Energy veteran tapped to lead Foundation operations and community relationships, further DTE’s mission of service to its customers and communities

Detroit, April 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) today announced the appointment of Rodney Cole as vice president of the DTE Energy Foundation, and director of community engagement for public affairs, DTE Energy. In his new role, Cole will lead the DTE Foundation’s operations and grant strategies, and will play a key role in advancing DTE’s efforts to create meaningful, good-paying jobs; advance social justice and racial equity; and be good stewards of the environment. Cole will also lead efforts to strengthen neighborhoods and manage community relationships across DTE’s service territory.


“Rodney is a proven leader who is respected not only within our company, but among government officials and in communities across Michigan,” said Lynette Dowler, vice president public affairs, DTE Energy, and president, DTE Foundation. “His experience – and passion for – advocating for policies that benefit our customers and communities position him to make an immediate positive impact on the people we serve, and to further empower our company and foundation to advance our efforts to drive healing, recovery and progress statewide – and beyond.”


Cole’s appointment follows Lynette Dowler’s promotion to vice president, public affairs, and president, DTE Foundation, last year.


During his 14-year career at DTE, Cole has led business units across the organization. He most recently served as the director of state government affairs. In this role, he spearheaded state legislative activities and worked closely with state legislators and the governor’s administration to meet the needs of DTE’s customers and other stakeholders.


“At DTE, our aspiration is to be a force for good in the communities where our 10,000-plus employees live and serve,” said Cole. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to play a role in continuing to drive our organization forward on its path toward achieving this aspiration, and to leverage the skills, insights and relationships I’ve developed during my 14 years with the company to create positive, meaningful change, and a healthier, more vital Michigan.”


Cole earned bachelor's and master's degrees from Michigan State University. He joined DTE Energy in 2006 as a member of the company’s human resources team and advanced to a leadership role. He then joined the company’s corporate and government affairs team in 2012, managing DTE’s relationship with the city of Detroit, then leading DTE's relationship with Wayne County until he was promoted to director, state government affairs, in 2017.


Cole serves on the Board of Directors for the American Association for Blacks in Energy (Michigan), Black Caucus Foundation of Michigan, Connect Detroit, Midnight Golf, Habitat for Humanity Michigan and the Wayne State University Press Board of Visitors. He also serves as a member of Teen Hype’s Advisory Board and Co-Chair of the Children’s Trust Fund of Michigan’s Advisory Committee. Cole is a graduate of Leadership Detroit Class XXXV and the 2018 cohort of Harvard University’s Young American Leaders Program (YALP).


About DTE Energy

DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. Its operating units include an electric company serving 2.2 million customers in Southeast Michigan and a natural gas company serving 1.3 million customers in Michigan. The DTE portfolio includes energy businesses focused on power and industrial projects; renewable natural gas; natural gas pipelines, gathering and storage; and energy marketing and trading. As an environmental leader, DTE utility operations will reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions by more than 80% by 2040 to produce cleaner energy while keeping it safe, reliable and affordable. DTE Electric aspires to achieve net zero carbon by 2050. DTE is committed to serving with its energy through volunteerism, education and employment initiatives, philanthropy and economic progress. Information about DTE is available at,, and


About the DTE Foundation 

The DTE Foundation is the philanthropic arm of DTE Energy, continuing the legacy of community support and involvement of its electric and natural gas utilities, which serve 2.2 million electric customers in Southeast Michigan and 1.3 million natural gas customers in Michigan. In 2020, the DTE Energy Foundation provided more than $16 million in grant support and approximately $21 million in COVID relief to nonprofits where the company has a business presence. As one of Michigan's leading corporate citizens, DTE Energy is a force for growth and prosperity in communities across Michigan in a variety of ways, including philanthropy, volunteerism and economic progress. Visit to learn more. 

Aimee Ridella
DTE Energy
Source: DTE Energy

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