October 15, 2018

Monday, October 15, 2018

Launch Michigan Coalition to Boost Educational Excellence in MI

We have shared the data around our educational outcomes in Michigan and how we’re facing a changing workforce and skills gap. Now we are taking a closer look as to why we need to ensure students are prepared for future jobs that don’t yet exist and work already underway in Michigan to address it.

Heather McGowan, an internationally known speaker, writer and thought leader, articulated the demands of our changing global workforce and how it requires a foundation of learning at CMF’s 46th Annual Conference.

“We’re entering the fourth industrial revolution when things wake up and everything around you has some intelligence and is speaking to each other, how do humans fit in that?” McGowan questioned.

McGowan shared the following data points:

  • 65 percent of future jobs don’t exist yet

  • 47 percent of tasks will be automated by 2033

She shared how “humans need to focus on being human and human skills,” which is rooted in strong emotional and social intelligence. Essentially, we need to have foundational learning to engage in critical thinking, spur curiosity and harness the abilities for lifelong learning.

“You’re going to add and delete many apps on your phones as you’re going to add and delete many careers,” McGowan said. “If you look at these things as foundational knowledge and fundamental literacies that will help you adapt and change in the future.”

How can we prepare students for this future?

CMF members and partners joined McGowan on stage to discuss the work of Launch Michigan, a diverse, statewide coalition of stakeholders, including CMF, committed to boosting educational excellence for every student and every school throughout our state.

“We won’t be prepared for the world and the economy that Heather laid out for us if we don’t do this work right now,” Julie Ridenour, president, Steelcase Foundation and member of the Launch Michigan Steering Committee said.

“The imperative I don’t believe has ever been as dire as it is right now. Therefore, I think people will rise up,” Nancy Moody, chair, DTE Energy Foundation and a member of Launch Michigan said.

Moody shared that DTE Energy, faced with the reality that 50 percent of its workforce will be eligible to retire within 5 years, has been working to connect youth and young adults to career pathways, through investing in career and technical education (CTE) programs, training and innovative partnerships.

Launch Michigan’s short-term focus includes:

  • Educator support and engagement

  • Accountability

  • Finance

  • Literacy

Ridenour shared that parents are the number one influencer in a child’s life and teachers are the second, which is why supporting our teachers is paramount.

Examples of work already underway that aligns with this effort are teacher leadership programs funded by the Steelcase Foundation and the Doug and Maria DeVos Foundation.

The Center for Excellence, Teaching and Learning (CETL), launched by Ed Trust-Midwest in partnership with the Steelcase Foundation, works with educators to better support instructional practice, collaboration and professional development. Three of the five elementary schools working with CETL are among the top improving schools in the state.

The Doug and Maria DeVos Foundation has also partnered with the Steelcase Foundation in supporting teacher leadership, creating systems where teachers can work alongside their peers to develop their talents through the Educational Network of Greater Grand Rapids.

“We start with teachers because highly effective teachers are the greatest in-school factor in changing outcomes,” Ashley Johnson, program officer for education, Doug and Maria DeVos Foundation said. “We partner with teacher leaders which changes how they do teacher learning and empowers them to share their knowledge and talent with their peers.”

Ridenour said Launch Michigan is currently forming work groups to quickly turnaround its first pieces of work in early 2019.

 “We know that we need a successful educational system as a cornerstone of a prosperous community, a prosperous state and a very strong economy,” Ridenour said. “We also know that education is a safeguard for democracy so that the wise execution of democracy is the result of education.”

Want more?

Connect with Launch Michigan.

Read more from Heather McGowan’s "Work to Learn: The Future of Work is Learning."







Public Policy Endowment Fund Launches in Honor of Rob Collier

Hundreds of CMF members, community and state leaders joined together in celebrating Rob Collier, president and CEO of CMF, his career and dedication to Michigan philanthropy last week at the Grand Rapids Public Museum as part of CMF’s 46th Annual Conference.

As CMF has shared on social media there were many special guests and surprises for Rob, including a tribute video featuring CMF members and partners, a one of a kind video from the Blue Man Group and proclamations from Senators Gary Peters and Debbie StabenowGovernor Rick Snyder and the state Legislature.

At the celebration, Neal Hegarty, vice president of programs, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and outgoing chair of CMF’s Board of Trustees, announced the establishment of the Robert S. Collier Public Policy Endowment Fund in honor of Rob’s service to CMF and Michigan philanthropy.

“From its earliest days, CMF has been a powerful advocate on the public policy issues that impact philanthropy. During Rob’s tenure as president and CEO, CMF’s reputation continued to grow as one of the leading voices, not just in Michigan, but nationally, on public policy issues of vital importance to foundations and the communities that they serve,” Hegarty said. “There is no better way to honor a man who has played such a leadership role in our sector than by permanently endowing a fund to support CMF’s future policy activities.This fund will allow CMF to build upon Rob’s amazing legacy.”

Thanks to the generous contributions from more than 100 CMF members, partner organizations, colleagues and Rob's personal friends, the fund launched with $1.35 million in assets. 

“The Robert S. Collier Public Policy Endowment Fund is a perfect tribute for an individual who has devoted the past 30 years of his life tirelessly advocating on behalf of philanthropy for common sense public policy,” David Jones, executive director, Petoskey-Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation and new chair, CMF’s Board of Trustees said. “Rob’s legacy of public policy work is now permanently endowed and will continue in his name, as it should.”

The Robert S. Collier Public Policy Endowment Fund will support public policy work in Lansing and Washington as it aligns with CMF's annual Government Relations and public policy goals, addressing critical policy issues facing the field of philanthropy and our Michigan communities.

Rob will as he says, “graduate” from his position on October 31 but will remain engaged with CMF through December 31 to assist Kyle Caldwell, CMF’s new president, with transition activities. He and his wife Diane, will continue a more than 37-year affiliation with CMF in 2019 as volunteers and members of CMF through their donor advised fund at the Shiawassee Community Foundation.

Want more?

If you would like to contribute to the Robert S. Collier Public Policy Endowment Fund please contact Dave Lindberg, CFO of CMF.

Watch the special video tribute.

Check out the photos from Rob’s celebration at the Grand Rapids Public Museum.

View the Blue Man Group video.







Expanding MI Voter Access to Increase Civic Engagement

The deadline to register to vote in Michigan’s November 6th election has closed but if a ballot proposal passes, Michiganders could register to vote on Election Day, expanding voting access and voter registration.

As CMF has reported, Promote the Vote, proposal 3, is a key issue that will be on the November ballot.

CMF’s Board of Trustees voted last week to support this ballot proposal, at the recommendation of CMF’s Public Policy Committee, as it supports equitable civic engagement for all Michiganders. Rob Collier, CMF president and CEO, shared with CMF members at last week’s Annual Members Meeting that “Voters are charitable givers, and therefore we need all Michiganders to be voters.”

Promote the Vote states that voting “yes” on proposal 3 will “ensure every eligible Michigan citizen can vote and every vote is secure and counted.”

If passed by voters, this proposal would provide qualified Michigan voters with the following rights:

  • To vote on a secret ballot.

  • For military and overseas voters to be sent a ballot 45 days before an election.

  • To vote straight party on all partisan general election ballots.

  • To be automatically registered to vote when obtaining a driver’s license or a personal ID card (unless the person declines).

  • To register to vote by mail on or before the 15th day before an election. After that, citizens may register to vote in person with proof of residency up to and on election day.

  • To register to vote in person at any time with proof of residency.

  • To vote an absentee ballot, by mail or in person, without giving a reason.

  • To have election results audited to ensure the accuracy of elections.

Promote the Vote reports that in the past two elections Michigan voters endured the sixth and 12th longest lines in the country respectively. In addition, Michigan is one of only 14 states with a voter registration deadline 30 days or more prior to Election Day.

If passed, this ballot proposal would amend an article of our state’s constitution.

Otherwise, to expand voter access and registration would require a state constitutional convention to review our state constitution in its entirety which is unlikely considering the tremendous effort and burden on the state to execute such a review.

For instance, in Michigan a question as to whether we should hold a constitutional convention is only proposed to voters every 16 years. Therefore, the Promote the Vote ballot proposal (also known as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment) is the most practical and efficient way to make this change because it has been approved by the Board of State Canvassers and state legislature to put this issue before the voters.

Promote the Vote has a growing list of supporting organizations and partners including the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce, Michigan Education Association, NAACP, Police Officers Association of Michigan, Jewish Community Relations Council/American Jewish Committee, League of Women Voters of Michigan and ACLU of Michigan, just to name a few.

Want more?

Check out Promote the Vote’s campaign.

View the Michigan ballot proposals.








ITC Holdings Corp. Supports Program to Connect MSU Students with Detroit Civic Institutions

Content excerpted and adapted from a company press release. Read the full release.

ITC Holdings Corp., a CMF corporate giving program member, provided $100,000 to support Michigan State University’s (MSU) InnovateGov program which provides MSU students with hands-on experience working on an array of social challenges.

InnovateGov connects MSU's students to Detroit's civic institutions while providing students with a one-of-a-kind opportunity to do real and impactful work on the city's most critical social challenges. 

"The students participating in InnovateGov are making a noticeable difference in the Detroit community. They bring the knowledge, energy and enthusiasm needed to tackle some of our greatest social challenges,” Christine Mason Soneral, senior vice president and general counsel for ITC said. "I'm proud to be a champion of this program and look forward to seeing what these students can accomplish." 

Since the program launched in 2014, it has deployed more than 150 MSU students to work on and deliver high-impact projects to civic partners in more than 30 Detroit civic institutions. These projects have focused on chronic absenteeism, vacant properties, small business development and more.

This work has also led to the development of an outreach process that prevented property tax foreclosure for thousands of residents and the launch of a celebrated and widely used database connecting Detroit small businesses with local suppliers.

"As a Michigan-based company, we can see firsthand the incredible impact and opportunity that this program provides, not only for the students but for our civic organizations and the residents they serve," Simon Whitelocke, vice president, ITC Holdings Corp. and President, ITC Michigan said. "It's a 'win-win' for all involved." 



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