Consultant that raked in $17.2M in bankruptcy congratulates Detroit in NYT ad

Conway MacKenzie
Photo courtesy of Joseph Lichterman.

A local consulting firm that has billed taxpayers $17.2 million for helping Detroit with its bankruptcy ran a full-page advertisement in Sunday’s New York Times.

“Congratulations to the City of Detroit, Mayor Michael Duggan, City Council and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr on a job well done,” the ad reads. “Your tireless and spirited efforts were instrumental in guiding the city – in record time – through the largest municipal bankruptcy in history.”

Van Conway with L. Brooks Patterson
Van Conway with L. Brooks Patterson

Full-page ads in the New York Times typically cost more than $100,000, especially on Sundays in the 1A section.

Conway MacKenzie raised serious questions after hiring former embattled state Treasurer Andy Dillon, who played a role in helping the firm land the lucrative contract and helped Gov. Rick Snyder seize control of the city’s finances. The firm’s president and CEO, Van Conway, also was a good friend of Dillon’s before the contract process even began.

Van Conway is known for hosting lavish holiday parties with scantily clad women.

“Conway MacKenzie is proud to serve as operational restructuring advisor to the city of Detroit,” the ad continues, listing phone numbers for 10 of their offices.

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.