Updates on The New Life as We Know It: What are you Doing With Your Margin?

The sunrise has been beautiful the last few days in Grand Rapids. Every day is a new day to be thankful for. At the same time, our world is facing a pandemic, a disruption to our lives, the likes of which we have never seen and will hopefully never see again. I am writing nowContinue reading “Updates on The New Life as We Know It: What are you Doing With Your Margin?”

Standing in the Gap for Those in Need: My Review of HillBilly Elegy

I just finished reading a book called “Hillbilly Elegy” by JD Vance. What I liked about this book: So many striking themes from my own family of origin: poverty, dysfunctional family relationships, addiction, alcoholism, abuse, vulnerability. It is also personally interesting to me that, like me, JD Vance also ended up graduating from high school,Continue reading “Standing in the Gap for Those in Need: My Review of HillBilly Elegy”

Community Spotlight: Next Step of West Michigan – walking alongside the most vulnerable

Yesterday I visited with Jonathan Peerboom – Program and Development Director of Next Step of West Michigan (Next Step) – a faith-based nonprofit employing people coming out of prison or rehab and providing them with a community of support that will help them integrate into the workforce, regain hope and empower themselves to create aContinue reading “Community Spotlight: Next Step of West Michigan – walking alongside the most vulnerable”

Rent Control is now a Law in Oregon – But is it a Proper Response to an Affordable Housing Crisis?

Good afternoon, all. This week I am back in the office after taking some time to recover from a cornea transplant. My eyes are still pretty sensitive to the light, but it was great to see the sun rise over Grand Rapids this morning. Rent Control as a way of Combating Affordable Housing Crisis? TodayContinue reading “Rent Control is now a Law in Oregon – But is it a Proper Response to an Affordable Housing Crisis?”

Grand Rapids Social Enterprise, L3Cs and a Call to Community Partnership.

Yesterday I visited with Dr. Justin Beene – Founder of Grand Rapids Center for Community Transformation  (GRCCT) – a collective of non-profit/for-profits working to see flourishing in Grand Rapids for all.  GCCT is essentially a hub for social enterprise, for the common good of the Greater Grand Rapids Area. GRCCT states on its website thatContinue reading “Grand Rapids Social Enterprise, L3Cs and a Call to Community Partnership.”

Grand Rapids Combats the Affordable Housing Crisis through the Rental Assistance Center

Today was my first day back mentoring my student at a local elementary school in the City of Grand Rapids. I was excited to catch up with my student, what had changed over the summer? One thing that changed, he had moved once again. Having to be concerned about where you will be sleeping at night,Continue reading “Grand Rapids Combats the Affordable Housing Crisis through the Rental Assistance Center”

Removing Barriers for the Vulnerable in our Society.

  Today is the first day of Artprize!  I took this photo today. For the next few weeks Grand Rapids will be swarming with visitors to see Art like the “Phoenix” – see below a photo I took.   Mel Trotter Ministries  – showing compassion for the vulnerable Today just so happens to be MelContinue reading “Removing Barriers for the Vulnerable in our Society.”

Staring Into the Eyes of a Fatherless Generation.

There’s nothing like a Michigan summer. Memorial Day weekend means the beginning of summer – and, consequently, the end of the school year.     Today was my last day of mentoring for the school year.  Unless my student moves  (which is always possible) I hope to see him in the Fall. Most of myContinue reading “Staring Into the Eyes of a Fatherless Generation.”

Calling the Next Generation of Leaders.

Good morning and Happy Thursday! It is a beautiful morning in downtown Grand Rapids!   Yesterday was the annual meeting of the Trustees of Mel Trotter Ministries. It was one year ago that my term ended as Board Chair. Last year I shared my reflections on this experience. One of my great joys during thisContinue reading “Calling the Next Generation of Leaders.”

Lessons from Court: Real Estate Investors combating the Affordable Housing Crisis

I took this photo this morning. Even when its cold outside, there is just something about the morning sun rising over Grand Rapids that gets me excited.   Wearing Multiple Hats. Life is complicated when we wear multiple hats. I’ve written about the multiple hats I wear. We all wear multiple hats. For example –Continue reading “Lessons from Court: Real Estate Investors combating the Affordable Housing Crisis”