For the last 40 years, two things have been true. Oakland County, home to most of Detroit’s white-collar suburbs, has been Michigan’s richest county. And L. Brooks Patterson has been Oakland’s dominant
personality, first as county prosecutor, then as county executive. When his current term ends in January, he will have held that office for 20 years.
That’s exactly as long as his longtime political enemy, Coleman Young, was Mayor of Detroit. But while Coleman finally retired after 20 years, Brooks is, at age 73, running again.