Banking & Finance and Human Resources

Firm names advisory board members for Michigan fund

January 8, 2014
| By Pete Daly |
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Firm names members of advisory board for Michigan fund
Frank Newman. Courtesy Blackford Capital

A local private equity firm focused on acquiring and growing middle-market manufacturing, distribution and service companies has appointed two members to the advisory board of a Michigan-centric fund.

Grand Rapids-based Blackford Capital said Tuesday that Frank Newman and Cindy Pasky are now part of its Michigan Prosperity Fund advisory board.

Newman is president/CEO of The Stow Company in Holland, and Pasky is president/CEO of Strategic Staffing Solutions in Detroit.

The fund

The Michigan Prosperity Fund was created in 2012 to generate “best-in-class returns” for investors in Michigan, while supporting the Michigan economy by maintaining local ownership of Michigan companies and protecting and creating jobs locally, according to a Blackford Capital announcement.

The fund had an “outstanding 2013,” evaluating more than 100 different investment opportunities, closing two acquisitions — Custom Profile and Mopec — and generating “strong returns for investors.”

"We are thrilled to have Frank and Cindy join the Michigan Prosperity Fund board," said Martin Stein, founder and managing director of Blackford Capital. "Frank and Cindy bring with them years of invaluable business experience, as well as a significant understanding of the challenges and opportunities the state is currently seeing.

“Our outstanding advisory board is what allows us to tap into the best of the best in executive talent and board members for our portfolio companies, and together, we look forward to continuing down a path of creating jobs and sustaining Michigan's economy."


Prior to The Stow Company, Newman served as chairman and CEO of Medical Nutrition USA from 2002-2011. He also served as president and then chairman and CEO of Eckerd Corporation from 1993-2001 and prior to that was president and CEO of F&M Distributors from 1986-1993.

Pasky serves as chair of the Detroit Downtown Partnership board of directors, co-chairs the Urban Strategies Committee of Business Leaders for Michigan and is a member of its board of directors and executive committee. She also directs 2-1-1 On the Go!, a homeless outreach program focused on helping individuals access permanent housing and employment. Pasky recently joined the board of directors for Atlas Holdings, a group of manufacturing, distribution, service and trading businesses.

Advisory board

The pair joins other members on the fund's advisory board: former Michigan governor and current Business Roundtable president John Engler; Mark Murray, co-CEO and vice chairman of Meijer; Mary Petrovich, an executive with the Carlyle Group and David Porteous, partner at McCurdy Wotila & Porteous and lead director at Huntington Bank.

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