Michigan Building Icons Sought to Protect the American Dream

Dear Readers,

This month’s Builder Magazine highlights the lives of three legends from the Michigan home building industry that have made a difference in shaping housing and land use in our state.

At 18 years old, William Pulte built his first house in Detroit in 1950. His company went on to building over 600,000 homes, introducing the subdivision idea that shaped many new communities in Michigan and throughout the country.

Many of us remember coming to our Michigan State Board meetings and being greeted by a big smile and warm handshake by Bob Jones. He remembered most of us by name. Bob developed land and built many homes in southeast Michigan. He believed in the difference that the Homebuilders Association made by not only being a part of many boards and committees but by also being a President of his Local, State, and National Homebuilding Associations.

Through the years Gregory McClelland led many of the legal fights that the Michigan Home Builders Association has been involved in. Our victories helped preserve personal property rights and keep alive the American dream of homeownership.

These icons will be remembered for their mentoring, leadership, and contributions that have shaped our industry. They believed in professionalism and advocated for laws, rules and regulations that kept homeownership affordable and a part of the American dream.

We have the opportunity to stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us by continuing to believe that each one of us makes a difference. We can make our contributions by being active in our local associations, being a part of our local city or township governing boards, or by supporting our association’s efforts. As your incoming 2019 President, I am humbled and excited about the opportunity to help lead our state association’s efforts. I am so proud of what our small staff in Lansing accomplishes. I am excited about working alongside of our staff, senior Officers, board members, and local memberships as we explore ways of making a difference and planning our future.

I would feel honored if you would contact our staff or me if you have any problems or issues that you need help with or if you have a problem or issue that you want to draw to our attention. There will always be those that oppose what we do, so we need to continue to advocate for our industry. Together we make a difference.


Jack Vander Meulen 2019 President

HBA of Michigan l