Wendy Lewis Jackson has been named the 2018 recipient of the Dr. Gerald K. Smith Award for Philanthropy by the Michigan Forum for African-Americans in Philanthropy (MFAAP), an Affinity Group of the Council of Michigan Foundations (CMF).
Lewis Jackson was honored on stage at CMF’s 46th Annual Conference on October 9 at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids.
The award honors the significant efforts and contributions of an individual in the field whose work and grantmaking activities promote effective and responsive change for vulnerable families and their children. The award was presented by Jason Paulateer, vice president and market manager, PNC, and chair of the CMF affinity group Michigan Forum for African-Americans in Philanthropy.
Lewis Jackson is managing director for the Detroit Program with The Kresge Foundation. She co-leads the foundation’s efforts to revitalize Detroit and strengthen its social and economic fabric.
“Wendy has worked tirelessly to advance tangible and sustainable progress that has helped to reduce inequality,” said Robert Thornton, program officer, Skillman Foundation. Thornton, the 2017 award recipient, nominated Lewis Jackson for this year’s honor.
One of her roles is leadership of Kresge Innovative Projects: Detroit (KIP:D), a multi-year effort to spur and support neighborhood projects across the city. “The outpouring of interest in grassroots change confirms our belief that neighborhood residents have the imagination and verve to make change,” she recently shared. “What they need is financial backing and technical support.”
Prior to joining The Kresge Foundation in 2008, Lewis Jackson was a program director for children and family initiatives and executive director for education initiatives at the Grand Rapids Community Foundation. ((include info on two awards))
“Wendy is hardworking and selfless,” notes Rob Collier, president and CEO, CMF. “She has truly committed her life to advancing the quality of life for Michigan families, strengthening opportunities for all.”