- change ups
Profiles of individuals who are leading West Michigan organizations.
A young man’s unlikely path leads to becoming the face of the Grand Rapids Drive.
In early 2012, Steve Jbara was sitting in his seat at The Palace of Auburn Hills as a season ticketholder for the Detroit Pistons when an usher approached him. Read More
Habitat for Humanity of Kent County’s new model involves neighborhood stabilization and revitalization.
Mary Buikema knows owning a house can be a transformational experience for a family, which is why she is so passionate about her job at Habitat for Humanity of Kent County. Read More
The new Grand Rapids police chief says the job has many similarities to managing a business.
David Rahinsky is not one of those executives who doesn’t always answer his phone. Read More
The local Pregnancy Resource Center is one of the largest in the country with an annual budget of $2 million.
Displayed inside Jim Sprague’s office are photos of his three children: Jacob, Madison and Kevin, ages 20, 14 and 11, respectively. Read More
Andrew Montpetit’s start-up, Thoughts You Can See, draws on his talent of expressing ideas visually.
Even though Andrew Montpetit loved to draw as a kid, he was always told that “the starving artist” path was too financially risky. Read More
Jason Spaulding learned from his experience and travels in Europe that there’s more to a brewery than making good beer.
The idea of making a career of beer has become an accepted premise in Grand Rapids, and few have done it better than Jason Spaulding. Read More
Linda Johnson Otterbridge’s Hook a Sista Up organization provides support and teaches accountability.
First-time entrepreneurs are a lot of fun to work with, according to Linda Johnson Otterbridge, because “you never know what they’re going to come up with.” Read More
For Catherine Garcia-Lindstrom, becoming a police officer in the 1970s meant overcoming a series of obstacles.
Catherine Garcia-Lindstrom stands as a much-needed example of how law enforcement can be an accepting and viable career path for women and members of minority communities. Read More
The founder of the five-year-old Exodus Place strives to help residents find their purpose in life.
Robb Munger was nearly killed when a mortar shell knocked him off of his feet in Honduras, but he was rattled even more when the final payment of a property tax bill came knocking on his door. Read More
A successful career has always been important to Meredith Bronk — but not necessarily in technology.
Even from an early age, Meredith Bronk told herself that no matter what profession she chose, she would become a success. Read More