- people on the move
Nonprofit hires Grand Rapids director
A statewide nonprofit dedicated to providing support for grieving children and their families has a new leader for its Grand Rapids office.
Jaime Counterman is the new director of Ele’s Place Grand Rapids.
Counterman’s role will include managing the office, overseeing staff, building community partnerships and cultivating and nurturing donor relations.
Counterman was most recently a development officer at the Metro Health-University of Michigan Health Hospital Foundation, where she was responsible for increasing philanthropic support.
She’s also worked for Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, the American Cancer Society and Myasthenia Gravis Foundation.
She has served on Ele’s Place Grand Rapids’ local community board since 2016.
“I began serving as a volunteer at Ele’s Place, because I was so inspired by their vision that every grieving child in Michigan should have access to compassionate support,” Counterman said.
She is also a leadership council member for the Grand Rapids Chamber’s ATHENA awards, and she spent over nine years as an advisory council member for the Grand Valley State University Women’s Center.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in advertising and public relations, with a Spanish minor, from GVSU.
“Not only does she have an impressive wealth of experience, she has a great passion for our mission to help grieving children and teens, having experienced a loss of her own,” said Daniel Layman, president and CEO, Ele’s Place.
“She has tirelessly contributed to our organization as a volunteer and community board member, and we are confident that she will hit the ground running in support of our grieving families.”
Through free peer-support group programs, Ele’s Place helps children cope with the death of a parent, sibling or other loved ones.
The nonprofit has four branches: Lansing, Flint, Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids.
It was established in 1991 by Betsy Stover and named in honor of her daughter, Ele Stover, who died in 1989 at the age of 11 months.
The Grand Rapids chapter was founded in 2013 by three families traveling each week from West Michigan for programs at Ele’s Place in Lansing.