People in the News: May 23, 2022

Here are the MiBiz People in the report of May 23, 2022


  • Investments in Gun Lakethe non-gaming economic development arm of the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians, appointed Jimmy Ten Brink Chief Executive Officer. TenBrink holds a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University and two master’s degrees from Loyola University Chicago and Grand Valley State University. He is currently studying business law at Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law. A member of the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of Potawatomi, TenBrink brings a wealth of experience from his previous roles as President of RSI Manufacturing and Baker Engineering, as well as Director of Corporate Business Development and Director of Operations for the owned holding company. to the Waséyabek Tribe Development Co. LLC.


  • Allegan based Perrigo Co. plc named Eduardo Bezerra as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer and Kyle Hanson as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary. Hanson will succeed Todd Kingma, who plans to retire after 19 years in the role. Hanson previously served as general counsel at The Buckle and senior vice president, general counsel and secretary at Wolverine World Wide. Bezerra is the former senior vice president and chief financial officer of Fresh Del Monte Produce, and also brings more than 20 years of experience in commercial, financial and strategic roles at Monsanto Co. and Bayer AG.


  • Michigan Capital Network hired Shawna Pendergrass as an Investor Relations Associate. Pendergrass has over 20 years of experience in administrative and client relations roles across all industries, including investment management, property management and construction. At MCN, she will participate in internal and external projects including meeting with investors, closing deals, financial transactions, and managing MCN’s angel investor network statewide.
  • Grand Rapids-based financial services company Acrisure SARL named Matthew Kirk as Executive Vice President and Head of Insurance Strategy and Execution. Kirk is a graduate of the James Madison School of Political Science at Michigan State University. He previously worked in the White House Office of Legislative Affairs as an assistant to George W. Bush and spent 16 years as senior vice president of The Hartford. At Acrisure, Kirk will support the execution of broader insurance plans and the deployment of AI-powered technology.


  • Grand Valley State University‘s Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy has hired Aimee Laramore as Director of Learning Services. Laramore holds a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership and Supervision from Purdue University, an MBA from the University of Toledo, and a Certificate in Transformational Leadership from Christian Theological Seminary. Previously, she was executive director of the Northwest Ohio Hemophilia Foundation, strategist of the John H. Boner Community Center, associate director of the Lake Institute on Faith and Giving at Indiana University, and philanthropic strategist of the Christian Theological Seminary.


  • the West Michigan Cancer Network named Shruti Jolly as Executive Director and Ashley Mitchell as administrative director. Jolly is a graduate of Wayne State University and Wayne State University Medical School and is the former chief resident of Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak. Jolly is currently a professor and associate chair of community practices in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Michigan and is also heavily involved in Michigan medicine. Mitchell is a Certified Advanced Oncology Nurse Practitioner with nearly 20 years of oncology experience. Mitchell is the Director of Oncology Clinical Administrative Services at Trinity Health Saint Mary’s Lack Cancer Center.
  • Health bara personalized and mobile healthcare service provider based in Grand-Rapids, has hired Martin Axelrod as Chief Financial Officer and General Counsel. Axelrod, a corporate lawyer, will help oversee the company’s next phases of growth. Axelrod previously worked in sales management, as a consultant at IBM, in sales and trading for a global investment bank, in software development, as a senior advisor to the wealth management team of a private bank and the largest Michigan-based national law firm.

— Compiled by Abigail Ham

New GMED chief plans to ‘start running’

gMuskegon economic development (GMED) appointed Marla Schneider as the new President and CEO after a three-year restructuring, the organization set about attracting new funders and revamping strategic planning.

Schneider succeeds Jim Edmonson, who led GMED’s three-year transition plan. Schneider officially begins her new role on June 1, but she is meeting with Edmonson this week to prepare for the transition.

“I think it will be a very smooth transition,” Schneider said. “I have no worries about the realization of the plan and its construction. I am very impressed with the immediate response and capabilities of the existing staff. It will be something where I can get to work. »

Schneider previously spent a decade working as vice president of marketing and communications for Greater Fort Wayne Inc., the economic development agency for Fort Wayne/Allen County, Indiana. She was also president of Three Rivers Distillation Company. in Fort Wayne and, since 2015, has been working directly with a local entrepreneur in Fort Wayne to help grow private businesses.

However, Schneider knew she wanted to return to an economic development role.

“It’s always been my plan to get back into the economic development industry – that’s where my passion lies,” Schneider said.

One of Schneider’s goals at Muskegon is to help grow the agribusiness, in which she has experience leading the operations of Three Rivers Distilling, she said.

“That’s going to be one of my big goals, watching the growth of this industry, which has really helped me learn from a business owner’s perspective what the struggles are,” Schneider said. “Coming back into economic development, I have a key understanding of the labor shortage we face and I’m pro-business and rationalizing that.”

Schneider’s 90-day plan upon joining GMED includes meeting with 100 companies.

“It’s the bread and butter of economic development: getting to know companies, what their pain points are and what they see as opportunities for growth,” Schneider said. “I want to develop a short-term strategic plan for the last quarter of the year and then work with the board of directors (GMED) on a long-term vision of what the county is looking for to build its growth.”

— Reported by Kate Carlson

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