Mission & Vision
- MCSC's Mission and Vision
The Michigan Community Service Commission utilizes service as a strategy to address the state's most pressing issues and empowers volunteers to strengthen communities.
- MCSC Program Statement
The Michigan Community Service Commission utilizes service as a strategy to address the state's most pressing issues and empowers volunteers to strengthen communities. The MCSC uses Michigan's AmeriCorps, Mentor Michigan, Volunteer Michigan, and the Governor's Service Awards to achieve just that.
- We are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion
The Michigan Community Service Commission joins Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II in expressing empathy and concern for Black Americans across the nation and right here in Michigan. We hear the call to action and stand in solidarity with communities seeking equitable justice.
The Michigan Community Service Commission is committed to becoming part of the solution. We plan to ensure that diversity, equity, and inclusion are a part of our national service ...
- What is the Commission and when do they meet?
The Commission consists of 25 members appointed by the Governor. The voting members of the Commission elect one of the members to serve as chairperson of the Commission. Members serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed for actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their official duties as members of the Commission.
Robert Kolt is the president and CEO of Kolt Communications, Inc., a privately owned communications corporation with offices located in Okemos, Michigan. In 1991, Kolt Communications began providing a variety of communication counseling services to both public and private sector clients statewide including: public relations, advertising and media consulting. Robert Kolt also serves as a full-time instructor in the Advertising and Public Relations Department in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences at Michigan State University and was honored with the title Professor of Practice in 2016. Kolt has been active as a media strategist for several statewide ballot issues, and worked as a media consultant and key political advisor to former Governor James J. Blanchard and former Secretary of State Richard H. Austin. Prior to founding Kolt Communications, Kolt worked as an executive for the Office of Communication in the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT). Kolt also worked for several years as a news anchor and correspondent for WZZM-TV 13 ABC in Grand Rapids, as well as WWTV/WWUP-TV 9/10 CBS in northern Michigan. He has been a MCSC member since 2012.
In March 2015 Heidi Magyar was appointed to a newly created position at General Motors as Director of Community Outreach. In this role, Magyar leads a team that includes GM’s ever-growing teamGM Cares employee volunteer program, GM Student Corps and other community volunteer activities.
Prior to this, Magyar was Chief of Staff supporting GM’s Executive Vice President of Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain.
Previously, Magyar served as communications manager for the president of GM North America and other product and technology leaders. In this role, she created and implemented public speaking and media relations strategies for GM’s senior executives.Before joining the GM executive communications staff, Magyar led communications at GM’s Lansing, Saginaw and Bay City manufacturing facilities, including managing plant-community partnerships.
She currently serves on the board for the Detroit Parks and Recreation Foundation and was formerly a board member of the Capital Area United Way, and Girl Scouts of Michigan – Heart of Michigan Council. She has been a member of MCSC since 2015.
Michigan Technological University
Darnishia Slade is a proud Detroiter turned Yooper; she graduated from Michigan Technological University in 1998 with a degree in Industrial Management minoring in International Business. She is currently the Manager of Global Engagement Programs and instructor in the Pavlis Honors College at Michigan Tech.
Since her first international trip to Finland in 1997 she has studied, traveled and performed community service in over 25 countries. In addition to her love of the international community, Darnishia is called to serve young people. For over 20 years she has worked to encourage, support, and guide students on their career path to responsible adulthood--expectant and confident that they will change the world!
In May 2011 she completed her Master’s degree in Management from Walsh College of Accountancy and Business and is currently working on a Doctorate degree at Michigan Tech in Applied Cognitive Science and Human Factors.
Retired senior managing director and founder of Pro-Tech Group, LLC
Earle B. Higgins, Sr., of Farmington Hills, is a retired senior managing director and founder of Pro-Tech Group, LLC. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Behavior and Language Arts from Eastern Michigan University. Mr. Higgins is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in the education, training, and developmental needs of youth, particularly disadvantaged youth, for a term commencing December 5, 2019 and expiring October 1, 2022.
Hill was recently a Youth Coordinator for The Austin Foundation. In his descriptive document to the MCSC for consideration for this seat he says, “As a product of the Detroit Public School System, I have lived the reality of educational inequity within our current education system. Further, I have shared the stories of myself and my classmates as a panelist for the Michigan Civil Rights Commission to explain firsthand how I have been affected by systemic racial discrimination, redlining, and educational inequity in schools.”
Saint Mary’s Foundation
For the last 21 years, Michelle has worked in the nonprofit world, primarily in health care, and has strong experience in fundraising, strategic planning, donor stewardship, board leadership and development and community relations. Currently, she serves as President for the Saint Mary’s Foundation, the philanthropic arm for Mercy Health Saint Mary’s. Michelle currently serves as a Board Member for Michigan Women’s Foundation as well as the National Kappa Delta Foundation Board. She recently stepped down after serving eight years as an elected member for the East Grand Rapids Public Schools Board of Education. Michelle has been recognized as one of the "50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan," as a Champion Award recipient for Leadership Skills by the Center for Community Leadership, and with the Benjamin Franklin Award for Outstanding Fundraising Professional from the Association of Fundraising Professionals West Michigan chapter. She has served on the MCSC since 2015.
Kids' Food Basket
Bridget Clark Whitney is the President and Founding CEO of Kids’ Food Basket, a children’s food equity organization that nourishes thousands of children and families in West Michigan facing food insecurity and poverty with daily, healthy evening meals. During Mrs. Clark Whitney’s 18-year tenure and under her leadership, Kids’ Food Basket has become one of the largest anti-hunger and childhood nutrition programs in Michigan.
Clark Whitney has a B.A. in Community Leadership and Communications from Aquinas College. She earned a M.S. in Social Justice from Marygrove College. Additionally, she holds a Certificate of Non-Profit Executive Management and a Certificate of Fundraising Management from Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Bridget was also selected as one of 50 nonprofit professionals from around the world to complete the Executive Program in Nonprofit Leadership Program and Certification from Stanford University.
She is an active board member for the Michigan Nonprofit Association (MNA) and serves on the Executive, Development and Membership Committee. She was the 2013 MNA Super Conference Co-Chair and Co-Chair of the Michigan Campus Compact Civic Engagement Institute. She also served as a board member for HQ (Homeless and Runaway Youth Drop-In Center). She is an Advisory Board Member for Michigan Women Forward, as well as serves on numerous food and equity-related committees at the local, state and national levels. She was named the ATHENA Young Professional of the Year in 2013, Grand Rapids Business Journal’s “50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan” and “Top 200 Business Leaders” in 2020.
AFSCME Local 1668
Kathleen Cain-Babbitt, is a Landscape Professional at Western Michigan University. She is the Chief Steward for AFSCME Local 1668, the Labor Organization representing the service staff employees who work at WMU. In the 26 years spent at WMU, she has been a member of the Community Services Committee and a member of the United Way campaign fundraising team. Kathleen formerly served as a Board Member for the United Way of Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region, as well as serving on the Impact Investment teams, and she continues to serve as the Labor Division Chairperson for UWBCKR. She serves on other committees, including the Work Force Development Board as an Alternate for Southwest MI, and the Kalamazoo Area Labor Management Board Member.
West Michigan Plumbers, Fitters and Service Trades Local Union 174
Nathan S. Phillips of Lowell, is the assistant business manager of West Michigan Plumbers, Fitters and Service Trades Local Union 174 and a volunteer with the United Way and the Feeding America Food Truck. Mr. Phillips is appointed to represent individuals with expertise in the education, training, and developmental needs of youth, particularly disadvantaged youth, for a term commencing December 5, 2019 and expiring October 1, 2020.
Latino Business and Economic Development Center
Carlos Sanchez, of Grand Rapids, is the director of the Latino Business and Economic Development Center at Ferris State University. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Business from Davenport University. Mr. Sanchez is appointed to represent experts in the delivery of human, educational, environmental, or public safety services to communities and persons, for a term commencing December 5, 2019 and expiring October 1, 2022.
Public Policy Associates
Sam Singh, of East Lansing, is the CEO of Public Policy Associates and a board member with the Greater Lansing Refugee Development Center and Global Detroit. He previously served as a State Representative for the 69th House District and is the former president and CEO of the Michigan Nonprofit Association. Mr. Singh is appointed to represent the volunteer sector as outlined in the Edward Kennedy Serve America Act, section 1606(2)(B), for a term commencing December 5, 2019 and expiring October 1, 2022.
International Union of Operating Engineers Local 324
Daniel T. McKernan, of Grosse Pointe Woods, is the communications director for the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 324. He holds a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Missouri. Mr. McKernan is appointed to represent local labor organizations for a term commencing December 5, 2019 and expiring October 1, 2022.
The Auto Club Group
John Graham, of New Boston, is the manager of the emergency preparedness program for The Auto Club Group, a volunteer reserve police officer for the city of Hamtramck, and a member of the Wayne County Local Planning Committee. Mr. Graham represents Native American Tribes for the Commission.
Lansing City Council
Peter Spadafore, of Lansing, is a member of the Lansing City Council and the Associate Executive Director of Government Relations for the Michigan Association of School Administrators. Mr. Spadafore represents local government.
First Family of Michigan
Sydney Shrewsbury is appointed as the Governor’s honorary designee representing the First Family of Michigan. As an honorary designee, Ms. Shrewsbury will be a non-voting member of the Commission.
Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation
Douglas Ferrick, of Northville Township, is the chief development officer for the Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation. Mr. Ferrick is representing business.
Michigan State University
Dan Olsen is an experienced communications professional specializing in issue management, government communications and media relations, and currently serves as the Deputy Spokesperson for Michigan State University.
Prior to joining MSU, he served in the Attorney General’s office. Dan served as the communications and media relations manager for the Department of Talent and Economic Development where he worked to expand resources and awareness to Michiganders on the array of career opportunities available in the state.
He is the vice president of the CharlotteRising Board of Directors, a local economic development non-profit in Charlotte and is an active volunteer in his community.
A graduate of Michigan State University, Dan was appointed to MCSC in December 2018.
Michigan Economic Development Corporation
Corey Utley is a business development manager for the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). Serving six counties in the I-69 corridor and three in West Michigan, Corey is charged with the attraction, retention and growth of businesses in the region. Corey has a strong record in state government, serving four years as Logistics Manager and deputy Northern Michigan Advisor in the Executive Office of Governor Rick Snyder. She also spent two years in the Michigan House of Representatives. Corey holds a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University. She is also a graduate of the Michigan Political Leadership Program.
For the past six years, Corey has volunteered with FIRST Robotics, where she assisted with team recruitment, provided matchmaking assistance for business mentors and facilitated state legislative outreach. Corey also serves as a public advocate with the Epilepsy Foundation of Michigan. In 2018, Corey was appointed to the Michigan Community Service Commission by Governor Rick Snyder.
A lifelong Michigander, Corey is passionate about her home state. Raised in Oakland County, Corey now makes her home in Okemos.
Ford Smart Mobility
Angela Ayers is the Mobility Strategist for Michigan for Ford Smart Mobility. She recently served as the Director of Strategic Policy for Governor Rick Snyder. She has also served as the Governor’s Deputy Director of Strategy and his Special Advisor on the Environment. She has also served as the Deputy Director of the Michigan Office of the Great Lakes.
Prior to joining the Governor’s Office, Ms. Ayers served in the Executive Office of the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments where she engaged on regional economic development, infrastructure, and water quality issues. She began her career in government in the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development where she spearheaded the State of Michigan’s efforts combating the Emerald Ash Borer.
Angela holds her M.S. of Public Policy from the University of Michigan, Dearborn and her B.S. in Forestry from Michigan State University. She became a fellow of MSU’s Great Lakes Leadership Academy in 2011 and served as an Executive Coach for the advanced leadership program from 2016-2017.
The Barre Code Metro Detroit
Aubrey Moon of Washington, Mich. is Senior Manager at The Barre Code Metro Detroit where she oversees client relations, sales, retention and marketing for three of the franchise’s locations. In addition to her management role, Aubrey also holds the title of Master Trainer and works with current and soon-to-be instructors to uphold certification standards. She is also a contributor for Detroit Moms Blog, an online parenting resource. Prior to The Barre Code, Aubrey worked in advertising where she managed accounts for Buick and GMC, and Nissan. Aubrey graduated from Michigan State University in 2010 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising and specialization in Public Relations.
Michigan Department of Education
Sheila Alles was appointed Interim State Superintendent for the Michigan Department of Education by the State Board of Education in 2018. Prior to the appointment, Sheila had been the Chief Deputy Superintendent for the Michigan Department of Education. One of her biggest priorities is to continue the implementation of Michigan’s Strategic Plan to become a Top 10 education state in 10 years.
She brings a wealth of educational and leadership experiences to the position. The first half of her career was spent in the Plymouth-Canton Community Schools where she taught students in kindergarten through eighth grade except first grade. She also had administrative experience as a curriculum coordinator and curriculum director. The second half of her career was spent in the Livonia Public Schools where her administrative positions included elementary principal, director of elementary instruction, director of academic services, and chief academic officer.
Her passion for teaching and learning is reflected in the positions she has held with professional organizations, such as a member of the Michigan Association for School Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) Board, member of the Michigan AdvancED Council, past chairperson of Metropolitan Bureau of School Studies—Council of Academic Leadership, member of Wayne County Curriculum Planning Team, and member of the Madonna University Teacher Education Committee. Sheila also has experience as an adjunct professor of literacy at the undergraduate and graduate collegiate level.
Mervenne & Company
Anne is the CEO of Mervenne & Company, a public affairs consulting company. She also is a board member for the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Michigan Board of Directors and owner and operator of Voyage to Morocco, a travel firm for Moroccan vacations. She recently served as the co-director of the Michigan Political Leadership Program and served under former Gov. John Engler in various roles within the Executive Office of the Governor. Anne holds a bachelor’s degree in urban studies from James Madison College at Michigan State University.
Huntington National Bank
Williams is currently the Senior Vice President of Community Development, Michigan Market Manager at Huntington National Bank. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Finance from Wayne State University and is currently enrolled in Harvard University’s Public Leadership credential program. She is a volunteer on the Executive Committee for the Dwelling Place of Grand Rapids and a board member on the Grand Rapids Community Foundation. She is also a community volunteer for Junior Achievement of the Michigan Great Lakes and participates with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and the NAACP. She has also facilitated Financial Literacy and Economic Empowerment workshops for past 18 years, to underserved individuals and entrepreneurs in low to moderate income area in Michigan.
Neighborhood Service Organization
Linda Little is the president and CEO of the Neighborhood Service Organization in Detroit. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Detroit Mercy and a Master of Business Administration from Wayne State University. She is appointed to represent experts in the delivery of human, educational, environmental, or public safety services to communities and persons, for a term commencing December 5, 2019 and expiring October 1, 2022.
The Ideal Group
Venegas is currently Vice President of The Ideal Group. He attended the University of Vermont where he achieved a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with a minor in Economics, Mathematics. He was appointed to Gov. Snyder’s Environmental Justice Advisory Group in 2017 and was a member of the Hispanic/Latino Commission from 2012 through 2019. He is a Latino business owner who employs over 700 people throughout Michigan, 9 other states, and Canada. He is very connected with the Latino community in Detroit and is also a parent with deep connections to education. His family and company have been continued investors in education, STEM development, Arts, and helping at-risk children. He is an active investor and participant in his community through the Michigan Opera Theatre Board, the Detroit Children's Fund, and the Gordie Howe International Bridge Community Advisory Board. Additionally he is a Main Sponsor for a Community Opera performance in SW Detroit and has done so for 3 years and counting. He is also a Volunteer for Community Gardening in SW Detroit, and Founder of the Clark Street Classic Hockey tournament to raise money for the Clark Park Hockey Association.
Deloitte Consulting, LLP
David Parent of Ann Arbor is principal for Deloitte Consulting, LLP, where he serves as a management consultant focused in the area of human capital, including talent strategies, organizational transformation, and human resources. David serves as Deloitte’s office managing director for its Consulting practice in Detroit, as well as leading the firm’s relationship with the University of Michigan. Within Deloitte, David has lead a variety of talent development, diversity, and learning programs. He also recently lead Deloitte-sponsored pro bono consulting projects for the City of Detroit, Wayne County and a project called “Flint Sprint” for the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce. Parent holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Illinois, a master’s in business administration and a master’s in urban and regional planning from the University of Michigan.