- change ups
Mimi Fritz implements Downtown Market vision
Editor’s note: Each issue of the Influential Women enewsletter will feature profiles of the Business Journal’s reigning 50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan. The profile first appeared in the event program.
For the last two years, Mimi Fritz has focused with single-minded determination on the construction, leasing, staffing and program development of the Grand Rapids Downtown Market. Her leadership has resulted in a stellar success for the community, food entrepreneurs, and Fritz personally.
The indoor/outdoor market’s growth and vibrancy have become a model around the state and it has garnered national attention with its unique combination of fresh, local food paired with a strong educational component.
Fritz is credited with successfully implementing the vision of the market, including the latest initiative to develop an education foundation that will provide low-income patrons with free courses, transportation, food assistance programs and subsidized entrepreneurial opportunities for food-related businesses.
She noted that creating and managing exciting urban places has been a rewarding and fulfilling part of her work at the market and throughout the last 10 years. Previously, Fritz served the city of Holland as marketing director for its downtown and farmers market, a role in which she focused on creative, strategic marketing and event planning to develop award-winning community and farmers market programming. She also formerly worked as marketing and event manager for Holland’s Tulip Time Festival, a newly created position at the time.
She lends her expertise as chair of marketing and programming/logistics with the board for Tulipanes Latino Art and Film Festival, and she sits on the board of directors for Habitat for Humanity Lakeshore and A Black Dance Company (Illinois).