Andrew Whiteman is a Michigan native and graduate of Royal Oak High School. After graduation, Andrew Whiteman left Michigan to pursue a degree in biology from Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio. During the summer of 2012, Whiteman served as a volunteer for the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) ballot initiative.
The DIA was funded by the state of Michigan from 1893 to the early 1990s, and it grew to be one of the largest art museums. Today, the DIA does not receive funds from the state, or any city or county, and is under an operating model that is not sustainable in volatile economies.
In 2012, the DIA asked for a two-cent mil for a period of 10 years, which would help fund the institution. Although the DIA receives 400,000 visitors annually, admission fees account for a small percentage of the museum’s overall revenue. The millage, which Andrew Whiteman helped to pass, is expected to raise over $23 million for the DIA over the next 10 years and help keep the Detroit landmark fully operational.