Goodbyes are never easy, and this one comes with mixed emotions for sure. It has been my highest privilege to lead the Grand Haven Area Community Foundation. I have sounded like a broken record since I announced my transition, but I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to help support our amazing community.

While I am packing up professionally and moving into a new opportunity in Grand Rapids, I feel lucky to be able to remain a resident of this area — my hometown — and be part of the wonderful momentum and good things that are happening here.

There are so many things that make me proud when I look back on my time here. Our committed Board, talented team, regional impact, productive partnerships, meaningful collaborations, and so much more. This organization is far more than our impressive numbers — we are changing lives because of the generosity of so many. The IRS classifies us as a non-profit organization, but we prefer to flip that around and self identify as a for-impact community organization.

As I take a final look out my window, I’m happy to see people enjoying the new Lynne Sherwood Waterfront Stadium. What an honor to be at the table that envisioned this new community space, and even higher honor to lead the community foundation through our $3 million investment in this space.

A simple quote from Winnie the Pooh has been resonating with me for the past few months: “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” That is exactly how I feel — how fortunate I have been to have had 11 years with an organization that I love so dearly.

I leave you with a few parting words:

Be grateful. Be impactful. Be mindful.

Onward and upward — the best is yet to come!