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 Inclusion
The Michigan Community Service Commission is firmly committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation in its programs, activities, and materials. Please call (517) 335-4295 to request accommodations or to obtain materials in an alternate format.
- 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.
Maria Wilson Holmes is the Director of Community Investment, External Affairs for Comcast’s Heartland Region. She has been employed in the cable industry for more than 30 years, primarily focused on three areas: programming, government affairs, and community investment. Maria began her career as an executive producer in local origination productions and is an award winning video producer. In her current role, Maria is responsible to oversee community investment initiatives including employee engagement programs. Maria serves on several boards and committees including the Plymouth United Way, Women in Cable Telecommunications, and Washtenaw Literacy Advisory Board. She has been professionally recognized with various awards and numerous video/production awards. Her leadership has resulted in several company awards and recognitions as well. Maria attended Eastern Michigan University with a major in Telecommunications and minor in Marketing. Maria has been a member of the Commission since 2015.
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.
Renaissance Venture Capital FundJessica is the Chief Administrative Officer for Renaissance Venture Capital Fund. She handles office operations, marketing and finance and business development support to reinforce Renaissance’s mission of helping to drive forward both innovation and growth of emerging companies in the region. Jessica previously worked for the Workforce Development Agency (WDA) as an analyst for the IT Talent Systems Department where she managed the Michigan Virtual Career Fair events, social media accounts for Pure Michigan Talent Connect and supported the marketing and outreach for the Pure Michigan Talent Connect system. Prior to working with WDA, Jessica worked for the MEDC’s Talent Enhancement Division on the Escalated Services Team where she assisted Michigan employers with finding talent for hard to fill positions and driving talent to utilize Pure Michigan Talent Connect. Jessica is a member of the Women’s Leadership Council of Jackson County and has been a Big Sister through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Jackson County for 5 years. She joined MCSC in December 2017.
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.
Michigan Israel Business Accelerator
In May of 2019, Scott Hiipakka was named the CEO of the Michigan Israel Business Accelerator. Previously, Hiipakka served as the director of the Office of Performance and Transformation under former Gov. Rick Snyder. In July 2016, Scott Hiipakka was appointed as the newly created Program Management Director-Executive Office of the Governor. His responsibilities included oversight and integration of key state strategic initiatives.
Prior to his role in state government, Hiipakka worked in the private sector as the Vice President for a consulting firm that specialized in emergency preparedness, safety and security. He also has experience in the medical and pharmaceutical industries.
Hiipakka also serves as a Brigade Commander in the Michigan Army National Guard where he holds the rank of Colonel. In this capacity he is responsible for teaching, mentoring, and building functional teams ranging in size from 30 to over 2,600 people. His prior assignment included serving as the Senior Strategic Planner and Advisor, State of Michigan-Flint Water Crisis. Other assignments include multiple command and staff positions with deployments in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and Operation Noble Eagle (Washington, DC). His active duty military experience includes service in the US Army Ranger Regiment and other key leadership and advisor roles. Hiipakka has over 20 years of military service.
He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Leadership Oakland and was the former Board Chair and board member for Winning Futures. Hiipakka is the recipient of the 2016 Leadership Oakland Leader of Leaders Award, the 2014 Winning Futures Legacy Award, and the 2013 Winning Futures Rare Everyday Hero Award. Hiipakka holds a bachelor’s degree in advertising from Michigan State University, a master’s degree in homeland security from Penn State University, and a master’s degree in strategic studies from the US Army War College. He was appointed to the Michigan Community Service Commission in December 2017.
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.
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.
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.
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.
First Family of Michigan
Sherry 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.
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.
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.
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.
Student, University of Michigan
Kelsey Snyder is currently a senior at the University of Michigan pursuing her bachelor degree in Political Science. She started her experience at the University by joining the Michigan Community Scholars Program, focusing on local service efforts. During her time at Michigan she has been an active member of the Panhellenic Community. She served on the executive board as Director of Alumnae Relations for her sorority, Sigma Kappa. She serves as the co-director of membership and internal affairs for the Panhellenic Peer Educator Program, Sexual Violence Empowerment and Education Division. She previously interned in Washington D.C. with the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. Kelsey has volunteered with the Tom Wall Foundation for 8 years, focusing on providing opportunities for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. She is the director for Victor’s Day at the University of Michigan which brings in over 600 students and adults with disabilities in the greater Detroit area to meet Michigan athletes. She recently served as a peer model in a social skills group for students and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders at Subfield Center in Ann Arbor. She joined MCSC in December 2017.
Retired, Youth development consultant
Judy Watson Olson comes from and is passionate about the Upper Peninsula. She is an active volunteer and serves as the Chair of the Board of Trustees of U.P. Health System – Marquette, is active in Rotary Youth Exchange through her Rotary Club, and volunteers at her Gwinn church. She retired in 2013 as president of Great Lakes Center for Youth Development, a Marquette-based nonprofit that promotes positive youth development and builds capacity in nonprofit organizations throughout the U.P. She has over 35 years of experience in youth development, community development, and program management. She has worked for MSU Extension and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. She has gained experience and expertise in philanthropy, community building, program development and strength-based youth development. While under her leadership, the Kellogg Foundation through the Kellogg Youth Initiative Partnerships invested over $18 million in the youth development environment, assisting in the development of over 10 new youth or family development organizations, and providing assistance and resources to an additional 75 nonprofit organizations, schools, and governmental units. Judy holds a B.S. and M.S. from Michigan State University, and an Ed.D. from Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL.
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.
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.
Corporation for National and Community Service
Cathy has been with the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) since December 2000 when she began as State Program Specialist in the Albany, NY Field Office. In February 2005, she accepted the position of State Program Director (SPD) for the CNCS South Carolina Field Office and moved to Columbia, SC, serving in that role for the next seven years. As a native of the Great Lakes State, she accepted a May 2012 transfer to serve as SPD in the CNCS Michigan Field Office. As an employee at CNCS, she has collaborated closely with three State Commissions on National and Community Service in NY, SC and MI. Prior to her employment at CNCS, she worked for nine years at Catholic Human Services as the project director for two CNCS Senior Corps Programs in the ten county region of NWMI. Earlier work experience included case management for the Medicaid Waiver Program for the Area Agency on Aging of NWMI and coordinator of the Respite Care/Information and Referral Program with the same agency. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Sociology from Central Michigan University and a Graduate Certificate in Gerontology from Eastern Michigan University.