WMU Trustee Ronald Hall of Detroit dies at 72

contact: Cheryl Roland
| WMU News
Photo of Ronald Hall Sr.

Ronald "Ron" Hall Sr.

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Western Michigan University is mourning the death June 1 of Trustee Ronald "Ron" Hall Sr. of Detroit after an extended illness. He was 72.

Hall, head of Detroit-area automotive firms Bridgewater Interiors and New Center Stamping, was a 1965 WMU alumnus. He was appointed to the WMU Board of Trustees in 2012 by Gov. Rick Snyder.

Ronald Hall Sr.

In addition to his leadership roles as chairman of Bridgewater and CEO of New Center Stamping, Hall was the president and CEO of Renaissance Capital Alliance, an equipment leasing company, and CEO of Departure Travel Management.

He was well known for turning the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council into one of the premier minority business organizations in the country. Under his leadership, the council's minority business and corporate membership more than doubled. In addition, he was assistant vice president of minority business development for New Detroit Inc., the nation's first urban coalition.

Hall played an active role in business and civic organizations across the state, including Business Leaders for Michigan, the Greater Detroit Chamber of Commerce, the Booker T. Washington Business Association, the National Athletic Amateur Union, and a host of public and private entities. His past community engagement included service on the board of St. John's Hospital and as chair of the American Diabetes Association of Michigan and Southeastern Michigan Junior Achievement.

"Trustee Hall was a proud alumnus who was enormously influential in the private sector and as a community leader who led by both example and advocacy," says WMU President John M. Dunn. "Through the years, he remained close to our university, and we were enormously proud to have him serve on the governing board, bringing his wealth of experience and unique perspective back to the school he loved so much."

Hall was a member of Alpha Phi Alpha, WMU's celebrated African-American fraternity and also was named a WMU Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award winner in 2000. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from WMU and a Master of Business Administration degree from Wayne State University.


A celebration of Hall's life has been scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday, June 11, at Plymouth United Church of Christ, 600 East Warren Ave., in Detroit.


In lieu of flowers, the family has suggested memorial donations to Michigan AAU Boys Basketball at AAU, 18516 Snow, Fraser, MI  48026;  or the Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts at musichall.org.