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Abigail Ham

Abigail Ham

GRAND RAPIDS — The West Michigan Center for Arts and Technology, a nonprofit focused on increasing social and economic opportunities in the region, is launching a new tech education pathway within its Adult Career Training Program. 

Economic development agency The Right Place Inc. has launched plans to transform the greater Grand Rapids area into a technology and innovation hub over the next 10 years. 

KALAMAZOO — Bell’s Brewery Inc. has launched a new charitable initiative that expects to distribute $480,000 in donations in its first year and support social and environmental causes in communities where its products are distributed.


The wind and solar industries could fully replace the number of lost jobs at U.S. coal-fired power plants that are expected to close to meet emission-reduction targets, a recent University of Michigan study has found.

Grand Rapids-based Guiding Light Mission Inc. has tapped a longtime Amway Corp. community relations specialist to lead the nonprofit’s fundraising and communications.

Land use changes driven by population growth and habitat loss and degradation continue to stress the health of the Great Lakes, according to a recent report jointly issued by federal environmental agencies in the U.S. and Canada.



Emily DeRitter formed Grand Rapids-based wedding coordination company The Best Day Details LLC in late 2019. 

A Grand Rapids nonprofit providing independent living services received a boost last week when Kent County voters extended a senior services millage that will help the organization’s recently launched technology support program.

The Industry 4.0 transition depends on male-dominated fields like computer science and engineering, potentially causing a disproportionate effect on women seeking to enter the field. 


Arts and cultural organizations are helping to define Muskegon’s downtown resurgence as they innovate out of slumps in attendance and events caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

A nationwide bus driver shortage has forced school districts to cut routes and scheduled transit services to trim trips. 

For more than a year, advocates representing local governments and realtors have failed to reach common ground on proposed regulations for short-term rental properties — and compromise between the two sides appears far from certain.



Prince Shema arrived in Michigan from the Democratic Republic of the Congo via Ethiopia in 2013. With help from a local nonprofit organization, he completed an independent living preparation program while going to high school. 

GRAND RAPIDS — A $110,000 grant will help expand the Literacy Center of West Michigan’s Family Literacy Program, which helps equip non-native English speakers whose children attend local schools with literacy and communication skills.

Philanthropic giving by U.S. corporations surged last year compared to 2020, a positive sign for Michigan nonprofits that tend to rely more on corporate donors than individuals compared to other states.


Sustainability-focused outdoor shoe manufacturer Holo Footwear Inc. plans to move its headquarters from Portland, Ore. to downtown Grand Rapids, state and local economic development officials announced today.

Applications are now open for the first round of grants from a newly established fund for women-owned businesses in Muskegon County.

An expanded countywide housing millage is already funding five multifamily developments in Kalamazoo County, where studies have identified a need for thousands of additional housing units.


A new state law makes Michigan the 14th state to require personal finance education as a prerequisite for high school graduation. 

The West Michigan Railroad Co. will receive up to $8.7 million in federal funding to upgrade and rebuild 5.6 miles of track in Southwest Michigan that railroad officials say will help spur economic development.

Lena Scoby considered her inability to have biological children as a sign to take her call to motherhood in a new direction. She accepted her first foster care placement, a young girl named Summer, in 2018. At the time, Scoby was single and working full time. 


Cruise the Great Lakes — a consortium of local tourism agencies, cruise lines, port authorities, U.S. states and Canadian provinces — has launched a sustainability pledge for ship operators and local communities in response to increasing demand for sustainable travel options.

Businesses and individuals around the world have stepped up to fundraise for Ukrainian refugees since Russia’s invasion began in February, but the head of a Southwest Michigan business development service has taken his show of support a step further. 

The Interurban Transit Partnership has received board and federal approval to purchase a $1.95 million property in Grandville for its new paratransit service operations center.


CASCADE TWP. — The first cohort of companies to receive grants through an air travel technology development program have revealed the fruits of their labor, including a self-driving wheelchair, an advanced flying security camera and a complete 3D model of Gerald R. Ford International Airport. 

With a rapidly growing number of workplace tasks expected to go digital in the next decade, developing digital skills is key to creating economic opportunities and reducing vulnerability to unemployment.