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The Johnson Center Improves Philanthropy

The Johnson Center Improves Philanthropy

by J. Bennett Rylah

Matthew Downey acts as the Nonprofit Services Program Director at Grand Valley State University's Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy. While he currently works in a Silver LEED certified building at 201 Front Ave SW, the Johnson Center did not live here when it began 20 years ago. In fact, the building that currently houses the Johnson Center used to be a bicycle factory. And the organization itself has grown to be much, much larger.

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Finding Your Place in Grand Rapids

Woman with flesh-eating bacteria wins lawsuit

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) -- A jury has awarded $755,000 to a Grand Rapids woman who developed flesh-eating bacteria.

More than three years ago, Kelly Robinson walked into the Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital emergency room, seeking treatment for a sore throat.

The Grand Rapids woman's sore throat eventually progressed into flesh-eating bacteria that spread to the tissue in her neck.
Robinson has scars that cover much of her body and has undergone multiple surgeries.

After suing the hospital and a physician's assistant, a jury this week awarded Robinson $755,000.

Her lawyer, Kevin Lesperance, says at least $155,000 of the money will go to the State of Michigan and Medicaid. The 44-year-old Robinson hopes to use the rest to go back to school.

The Grand Rapids Press reports Spectrum Health plans to appeal the decision.

Time capsule opened in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- A Grand Rapids senior living community celebrated a special anniversary with a trip back to the mid-60's. Holland Home's Fulton Manor has been serving seniors at its East Fulton Street location for exactly 100 years.

Staff at the manor opened a time capsule which was first buried in the late 1800's. It was last opened and added to in 1966.

The capsule contained newspapers from 1912 and old documents from Holland Home.

Lt. Governor Calley to speak at GRCC commencement

Lt. Governor Calley to speak at GRCC commencement

Michigan’s 2nd youngest Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley, 35, will address Grand Rapids Community College graduates at the 2012 commencement ceremony  to be held at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, April 27, at the Gerald R. Ford Fieldhouse on the GRCC campus.

“We’re honored to have someone of Lt. Governor Calley’s calibur and stature speaking to our students as they embark on their next stage in their lives,” said GRCC president Steven C. Ender.  “He has a great message to share based on his own experience involving hard work and what it takes to succeed – it will be another learning experience for our graduating students.”

Lt. Gov. Calley graduated from Michigan State University in 1998 with a B.A. in business administration and received his MBA from Grand Valley State University in 2000.  He served as a community banker for more than a decade working his way from the mailroom to vice president.  

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West Catholic Quiz Bowl Team Places 2nd in the State

West Catholic Quiz Bowl Team Places 2nd in the State

The West Catholic Quiz Bowl team capped off its most successful season in school history by finishing in second place in the Class B Division of the Michigan High School Quiz Bowl State Championship at Michigan State University on April 20 and 21. West Catholic lost in the finals to three-time defending state champion Detroit Country Day.

At the State Tournament, the team posted wins over North Branch, Huron, North Branch (again), Haslett, Ludington, and St. Joseph. The only team to defeat West Catholic in the double elimination tournament was Detroit Country Day, who won in a close match on Friday and then won again in the tournament finals. The 840 points scored by West Catholic in its first match against North Branch were the most points scored by any team in Class B at this year’s tournament.

Final approval expected for charter academy

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM)- A new public arts charter school is on track to open this fall in Grand Rapids.

The Grand Rapids Ellington Academy of Arts and Technology has received a preliminary go-ahead to open under a charter contract with Lake Superior State University.

The school will open on Burton Street on the campus of Kingdom Square. It will focus on performing arts, music, and theater along with academics.

Bruce Harger with Lake Superior State University says, "It's very important to have a high school, especially a middle school-high school, because it's in the middle school years where children begin to be challenged."

Marvin Sapp, GREAAT Schools founder said, "We believe that this model is going to be a model that is going to add to the whole structure of what education is supposed to be in our community."

The new public arts charter school would be for sixth, seventh and eighth graders. Only 75 students will be accepted per grade.

UICA restructures; limits public hours

GRAND RAPIDS, (WZZM) -- The Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts is struggling and will temporarily cut back hours. The board's director says the UICA is restructuring and the executive director has stepped down.

Less than a year ago, the UICA moved into, and started renovating a large building on Fulton and Division. But half way through construction, board leaders say they're out of money.

They need $7 million to finish the project. The UICA already constructed the first three floors-- costing $8 million. But, the organization has to pay a lease, until the project is finished and it's causing them to lose money.

The organization sent out a letter to donors-- saying they're cutting back hours to restructure-- and solve this problem. The executive director, who stepped down, will be paid as a consultant until he can be replaced. Directors say, state and federal funding cuts-- ultimately, left them in a lurch.