About Us

Ruth Mott Foundation & Applewood

Our Founder: Ruth Rawlings Mott

Cultivating Community Vitality, Nurturing Hope & Pride

Ruth Rawlings Mott (1901–1999) was raised in El Paso, Texas. Her father was a family practice physician who served those in need on both sides of the border. Her mother was a businesswoman, kindergarten teacher, and founder of the El Paso YWCA.

Ruth went east to study physical education, became a teacher in the Baltimore Friends School, and returned to El Paso to open her own dance studio. It was there that she met and married Charles Stewart Mott and then moved to his estate, Applewood, in Flint, Michigan. She became a mother, an active partner with her husband in the community, and prominent in her own right as a local leader, foundation trustee, and national philanthropist.

Mrs. Mott established the Ruth Mott Foundation as a means of extending the reach of her philanthropy beyond her lifetime with a continued presence in Flint. Ruth Mott’s values and conduct inspire the Foundation to be inclusive, welcoming, and egalitarian, to act with kindness and good humor, treat all people with respect and dignity, and encourage personal responsibility, practice prevention, and maintain “the long view”.

Ruth Mott Foundation

Refined Strategy to Focus on North Flint

The Ruth Mott Foundation, a private foundation committed to promoting the health and vitality of its home community of Flint and the surrounding area, has adopted a more targeted place-based approach to philanthropy. Under its new strategy, Ruth Mott Foundation will focus on north Flint. At the core of this strategic focus is a commitment to support community voiced and driven priorities and plans. Through this approach, the residents of north Flint will shape those solutions intended to strengthen their neighborhoods and help create and sustain opportunities to contribute and thrive.

We define north Flint as the city limits on the west, north and east, and Flushing Rd./5th Ave./Longway Blvd. to the south.

“Place-based philanthropy has demonstrated that concentrating on a defined area with significant challenges can result in increased impact on a community,” said Maryanne Mott, Ruth Mott Foundation’s Chairman. “We are focusing on north Flint because it’s the area in our community where we believe our efforts can make the biggest difference.”

Additionally, we will seek to fund resident-driven, innovative solutions that have the potential for an outsized impact on long-standing problems. We will also consider capacity-building in order to bolster our impact.

Click here for more information about our new strategic plan.

Applewood: The Charles Stewart Mott Estate

100 Years of Family, Fun, and Farming in Flint

Charles Stewart Mott built Applewood in 1916 as a family home and gentleman’s farm. Today, it’s a vital community resource open to all.

We’re celebrating Applewood’s 100th year with regular public hours in 2016.  There will be engaging new tours and events, and expanded opportunities to learn, share, and grow. These new programs continue C.S. and Ruth Mott’s tradition of giving back to the community that gave them so much.

Applewood was transferred to the Ruth Mott Foundation upon Ruth’s death and became an essential part of the foundation’s philanthropic work.

In addition to an elegant home with an attached greenhouse, the 34-acre estate includes an apple orchard with 29 heirloom varieties, extensive gardens, a gatehouse, barn, and chicken coop. Applewood Estate is a Michigan Historic Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Sites.

mission_visionOur Mission, Vision and Values

Mission

The Ruth Mott Foundation’s mission is to advocate, stimulate, and support community vitality. Our commitment is to base the Foundation in its home community of Flint, Michigan.

Vision

The Foundation envisions communities of hope and pride, whose neighborhood environments and urban core are safe, attractive and healthy, enriched by cultural diversity and an engaged citizenry.

Values

Ruth Mott’s values and conduct inspire us to:

  • Be welcoming, inclusive, and egalitarian.
  • Treat everyone with respect and dignity.
  • Act with kindness and good humor.
  • Promote civic hope and pride.
  • Encourage personal responsibility.
  • Practice prevention.
  • Maintain the “long view.”

board_photoOur Board Of Trustees

Maryanne Mott
Chair

Harriet Kenworthy
Vice Chair

Joseph Robinson
Treasurer

Dolores Ennis
Secretary

Gloria Coles
Trustee

Lawrence Moon
Trustee

Charles Meynet
Board Observer

Melissa Patterson
Trustee

Robert Pestronk
Trustee

Shannon Easter White
Trustee

 

community_altContact Us

RMFOldLogo
ApplewoodNewLogo2
Mailing Address:
Ruth Mott Foundation
111. E. Court Street
Suite 3C
Flint, MI 48502
Mailing Address:
1400 E. Kearsley Street
Flint, Michigan 48503

Main Contacts:
Phone: (810) 233-0170
Fax: (810) 233-7022
Email: rmf@ruthmott.org
Main Contacts:
Phone: (810) 233-3835
Fax: (810) 234-2228
Email: applewoodinfo@ruthmott.org

Driving Directions:
From the North
Take I-75 south bound to exit #125 (I-475).
Take exit and continue south on I-475 to exit #7 (Court Street).
Take exit and continue on SB Chavez Dr.
Turn right on E. Court Street (.3 miles).
Bank One Building Plaza One Financial Center

Please follow these directions to FREE parking
From I-475, take exit 8A and turn east on Longway Boulevard. At the first traffic light, you’ll see our large “Applewood Estate” sign on a brick wall on your right. Just past that sign, turn right onto a dedicated street that leads to the free parking lot and public entrance. (Don’t make a sharp right at the light onto Kearsley Street.)

staffStaff

Executive


Handy Lindsey Jr.

President
hlindsey@ruthmott.org

Sheryl Johnston
Executive Assistant
sjohnston@ruthmott.org

Administration


Joyce Bobolts
Director of Finance and Administration
jbobolts@ruthmott.org
2
Tammy Staudacher
Grants Administrator
tstaudacher@ruthmott.org

Sofia Walker
Accountant
swalker@ruthmott.org 

Communications


Kristin Longley
Director of Communications
klongley@ruthmott.org
Andrea
Andrea Bergstrom
Communications Project Coordinator
abergstrom@ruthmott.org

Horticulture Department


Deb Elliott
Director of Estate Operations
delliott@ruthmott.org


Todd Bakos
Operations Project Manager
tbakos@ruthmott.org

1
Mike Belco
Integrated Pest Management Specialist
mbelco@ruthmott.org

1
Kelly Care
Horticulturist
kcare@ruthmott.org


Andrew Ewing
Horticulturist
aewing@ruthmott.org


Ila Kelley
Floriculturist
ikelley@ruthmott.org

Collections & Education


Megan McAdow
Director of Collections & Education
mmcadow@ruthmott.org

Malcolm Cottle
Collections Assistant
mcottle@ruthmott.org


Ashley Ross
Assistant Collections & Education Manager
aross@ruthmott.org

Elena Kondrashin
Collections Technician
ekondrashin@ruthmott.org


Renee Saba
Education & Events Coordinator
rsaba@ruthmott.org
1
Linda Bedtelyon
Volunteer Coordinator
lbedtelyon@ruthmott.org


Mary Steelman
Education & Events Assistant
msteelman@ruthmott.org

Kira Rabkina
Collections Technician
krabkina@ruthmott.org


Courtney Bean
Visitor Experience Specialist
cbean@ruthmott.org

Trevor Norman
Visitor Experience Specialist
tnorman@ruthmott.org

Programs


Raquel Thueme
Vice President of Programs
rthueme@ruthmott.org

Elizabeth Jordan
Senior Program Officer
ejordan@ruthmott.org


Erin Franzen
Program Associate
efranzen@ruthmott.org
R Turner
Rafael Turner
Program Officer
rturner@ruthmott.org


Tryphena Clarke
Community Engagement Officer
tclarke@ruthmott.org

Liz Delaney
Learning Officer
edelaney@ruthmott.org

 

Security

Alvin Bradford
Security Officer
abradford@ruthmott.org
Scott Kelley
Security Officer
skelley@ruthmott.org

Jeffrey Mabry
Security Officer
jmabry@ruthmott.org

Arthur Markham
Security Officer
amarkham@ruthmott.org

Tom Synder
Security Officer
tsynder@ruthmott.org

Mark Williams
Security Officer
mwilliams@ruthmott.org

get_involvedGet Involved

Applewood employees, volunteers, and interns are valued members of Ruth Mott Foundation’s mission. Opportunities are listed here as they become available.

Ruth Mott Foundation looks to recruit team members that are as economically, culturally, and ethnically diverse as the community we serve. We are committed to diversity and inclusion in all its forms, including but not limited to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, height, weight, marital status, sexual orientation, protected genetic information, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

volunteer

Volunteer

To learn more, click the VOLUNTEER button below or contact Linda Bedtelyon, Volunteer Coordinator at (810) 396-3108 or lbedtelyon@ruthmott.org.

Volunteer

Visitor Experience Assistant

Help guests enjoy their experiences at Applewood by participating in tours, family activities, and experiences in the garden. 

Event Assistant

Greet, welcome, count, and direct guests to event activities and distribute brochures. Provide logistical support for events. Typical activities include facilitating surveys, managing contests, running a video for guest viewing, or helping with event setup.

Tour Guide

Facilitate guided tours of the house and gardens through engaging visitors in conversation. Share the stories and history about the Mott home and family and encourage visitors to share their stories as well.

Education Assistant

Lead youth programs and students in school education programs. Sessions include classroom lessons, field trips, and gardening activities such as planting, weeding, watering, and harvesting vegetables. 

Horticulture Assistant

Support the Horticulture staff with such tasks as planting, weeding, and harvesting fruit.

Community Engagement Assistant

Greet, welcome, count, and direct guests to event activities and distribute brochures. Provide logistical support for events. Typical activities include facilitating surveys, managing contests, running a video for guest viewing, or helping with event setup.

Apply Online

internshipsInternships

The Ruth Mott Foundation has paid internships available throughout the year. Interns gain valuable hands-on experience while assisting RMF staff. Internships are offered by Collections & Archives, Communications, Horticulture, and Educational Programs. Thank you for your interest!

Education and Events Intern

Internships are now available in the Education Department with the Ruth Mott Foundation at Applewood Estate. Once home to Charles Stewart Mott and his family members, the Applewood Estate dates back to 1916. The estate is now owned and operated by the Ruth Mott Foundation and consists of award-winning gardens, historic buildings, and collections of art, artifacts, archives, and photographs.

Internships are open to undergraduate or graduate college students. We offer a well-rounded program whereby each student learns general knowledge and practices in several areas, in addition to working on one specific project to gain a more in-depth and hands-on experience.

Projects may be tailored to a student’s coursework or interests and the supervisor will work with students and professors to meet school requirements for classes and credits. Related majors include: art history, art (fine or studio), education/teaching, museum studies, history, anthropology/material culture, library science (archives), visual arts, and visual communication. Interns can expect to gain experience in the following areas:

  • Education – Work with staff to learn and conduct education programs and tours, develop educational materials for the site, and help organize the department resources. Assist with scheduling educational tours and field trips.
  • Events – Assist staff in event planning and delivering special programming; be on site for large events, lead activities for visitors of different ages.
  • Collections – Work with the Education department and Collections department to identify artifacts to use in educational programs, learn proper care and handling for an education collection.
  • Archives – Assist in researching the archival collection for educational content; help identify archives to use in educational programs, learn proper care and handling.

Duties May Include:

  • Assist staff in design, delivery and evaluation of on-site programs at Applewood and off-site community expos and events for the 2016 season.
  • Assist with data collection for events and compile program evaluations.
  • Organize supplies and provide logistical support for events and tours, most of which are held outdoors and require manual labor and an ability to lift or carry 40 lbs.
  • Perform administrative and office support activities such as fielding telephone calls, word processing, filing and faxing.

Qualifications:

  • High school diploma or GED.  College experience in a field such as education, history, public gardens, volunteerism, social work, or a related field desired.
  • Prior experience working directly with the public preferred.
  • Excellent interpersonal and relational skills, including ability to work effectively with people of all ages, social, racial, and economic backgrounds in a collaborative environment.  (Frequently work with large groups of children.)
  • Demonstrated ability for creativity, handling multiple tasks and meeting deadlines.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office including Word, Publisher, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.
  • Resident or work experience in Greater Flint community desired.

Ruth Mott Foundation looks to recruit team members that are as economically, culturally and ethnically diverse as the community we serve. We are committed to diversity and inclusion in all its forms, including but not limited to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, height, weight, marital status, sexual orientation protected genetic information, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

This position requires approximately 30-40 hours per week and involves occasional evening/weekend hours for events. Compensation is approximately $10 per hour. Hours are generally scheduled between 9am-4pm Monday through Friday. The specific dates and hours of employment will be finalized at the time of hiring.

To Apply:  Interested candidates should email a cover letter highlighting specific interests, resume, and contact information to resumes@ruthmott.org. Please indicate the hours per week you are available and requirements for school credit.

Collections & Archives Intern

Internships are now available in the Collections & Archives Department with the Ruth Mott Foundation at Applewood. Once home to Charles Stewart Mott and his family members, the Applewood Estate dates back to 1916. The estate is now owned and operated by the Ruth Mott Foundation and consists of award-winning gardens, historic buildings, and collections of art, artifacts, archives, and photographs. 

Internships are open to undergraduate or graduate college students. We offer a well-rounded program whereby each student learns general knowledge and practices in several areas, in addition to working on one specific project to gain a more in-depth and hands-on experience.

Projects may be tailored to a student’s coursework or interests and the supervisor will work with students and professors to meet school requirements for classes and credits. Related majors include: art history, art (fine or studio), education/teaching, museum studies, history, anthropology/material culture, library science (archives), visual arts, and visual communication. Interns can expect to gain experience in the following areas:

  • Exhibits: Researching, writing, designing, and installing exhibits. 
  • Education: Work with staff to learn and conduct education programs and tours, develop educational materials for the site, and help organize the department resources.
  • Collections: Assist the Collections department staff with accessioning and cataloging artifacts (using PastPerfect Software), inventory of select collections, use of computerized collections management systems, preparation of artifacts for exhibit or storage, and other registration and digitization projects.
  • Archives: Assist in processing archival collections, research requests, and special projects; scan photographs and learn how to use PastPerfect Software for Archival collections.

This position requires approximately 10 hours per week and involves occasional evening/weekend hours. Compensation is approximately $10 per hour. Hours are generally scheduled between 10am-4pm Monday through Friday. The specific dates and hours of employment will be finalized at the time of hiring.

How to Apply:
Interested candidates should email a cover letter highlighting specific interests, resume, and contact information to resumes@ruthmott.org. Please indicate the hours per week you are available and requirements for school credit. 

Employment

No job openings at this time.

comm_resources

Ruth Mott Foundation Press Releases

$1.2 million in grants awarded by Ruth Mott Foundation include water crisis recovery, job training, neighborhood projects

FLINT, Michigan, Aug. 1, 2016 – A mobile health clinic for water crisis recovery, a job training program for at-risk youth, and north Flint neighborhood improvement projects are some of the valuable programs supported by more than $1.2 million in grants awarded by the Ruth Mott Foundation.

The Board of Trustees approved the $1,263,930 in grant funding at its June meeting, continuing the Ruth Mott Foundation’s commitment to improving the quality of life for residents in north Flint. The Foundation’s new strategy focuses grantmaking on four priority areas that north Flint residents identified as critical: youth, safety, economic opportunity and neighborhoods.

During the Foundation’s strategic planning process with the community, many north Flint residents expressed a need for more support for neighborhood-level projects. This year, the Ruth Mott Foundation continued its support of the Neighborhoods Small Grants Program by the Community Foundation of Greater Flint. The program funds projects by citizen-based organizations that address pressing issues in their neighborhoods.

Last year’s Neighborhoods Small Grants Program engaged more than 200 youth and adults from north Flint in service projects that included building a mobile produce stand, mowing lots, boarding vacant homes and hosting events for youth and families. In Dewey Park in the 3rd Ward, for example, a $1,000 small grant supported visible improvements that included a cleanup, revamping the basketball courts and building benches.

“This streamlines the process for neighborhood small groups to be able to do things in the community,” said Flint resident Quincy Murphy, leader of the Garfield-Bunche Community Service Corporation and past recipient of a neighborhood small grant for Dewey Park. “This program makes it much easier for us to get funding for small projects that make a difference.”

Also included in the Ruth Mott Foundation’s latest round of grants is $50,000 in funding for the Genesee Health System’s Community Support and Resiliency Program, which will provide a Flint mobile mental health unit for children and adults affected by the Flint water crisis. The award is part of the Foundation’s overall $1 million commitment to addressing the short-term and long-term needs of Flint’s children and adults exposed to lead.

Another top priority addressed by the grants is job training for young people. A new $54,000 grant for the Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates program will help prepare at-risk youth for employment.

“We heard loud and clear the priorities that north Flint residents have for their families and neighborhoods,” said Handy Lindsey, president of the Ruth Mott Foundation. “We’re committed to following through with our new strategy and providing the resources and support to help them thrive.”

In all, 19 grants were awarded to the following organizations:

Grantee Project/Program Name Amount
United Way of Genesee County General Operating Support $250,000
Flint Institute of Music Tapology $130,000
Floyd J. McCree Theatre General Operating Support $101,250
Flint Institute of Music Community Outreach 2016-17 $94,770
Flint Institute of Music Flint Youth Theatre 2016-17 Signature Series $85,000
Genesee County Habitat for Humanity Target Neighborhood Repair 2016 $75,000
Community Foundation of Greater Flint Neighborhood Small Grants Program 2016 $67,770
Sphinx Organization Sphinx Overture and Artist Residencies $67,040
GST Michigan Works Jobs for Michigan’s Graduates $54,000
Flint Cultural Center Corporation Community Engagement and Cultural Education 2016 $53,155
Project SYNCERE STEMNETICS 2016 $50,375
Genesee Health System Community Support & Resiliency Program $50,000
University of Michigan-Flint North Flint Economic Prosperity Program $49,050
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Flint 100 Men 100 Boys Mentoring Program $42,500
Eastside Compassionate Mission Center Empowering Through Employment $28,520
African Drum & Dance Parents Assoc. General Operating Support $20,000
Michigan League for Public Policy Empowering North Flint Residents $20,000
Carriage Town Ministries Summer Education and Enrichment Program $14,500
El Ballet Folklorico Estudiantil General Operating Support $11,000
TOTAL $1,263,930

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Flint neighborhood pilot project to bring safe water, resources to residents

FLINT, Michigan, July 8, 2016 – A water resources expo and door-to-door canvassers are coming to the Civic Park Neighborhood this month as part of a pilot project to ensure hard-to-reach Flint residents have access to safe and clean drinking water.

The “What to Know and Do About Water Pilot Project” includes a water resource fair from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday, July 23, at Joy Tabernacle, 2505 N. Chevrolet Ave. During the expo, paid workers will go door to door in the Civic Park Neighborhood to identify residents in need of regular service delivery and conduct a household survey about water-related needs. The canvassers will have water, filters and testing kits available for residents who need them.

The goal is to reach any residents who, for any reason, aren’t getting bottled water, filters or other important resources.

Civic Park on Flint’s northwest side is one of the oldest planned subdivisions in the country and a portion of the neighborhood contains one of the highest concentrations of lead service lines in Flint, according to University of Michigan-Flint research. It’s located in Flint’s 2nd Ward.

The water expo and canvassing is being coordinated by the Flint Grassroots Initiative, a partnership group based at Joy Tabernacle formed in response to the water crisis. Grant funding for the project came from the Ruth Mott Foundation and United Way of Genesee County. The canvassers will go door to door in the neighborhood daily for 10 weeks in order to visit every home.

“We’re reaching the residents at the grassroots level to make sure they’re not still drinking the water,” said Pastor R. Sherman McCathern of Joy Tabernacle. “We’re bringing help directly to their doorsteps.”

Four of the 12 canvassers were hired from a recent job fair at Joy Tabernacle. The rest of the workers are from Mott Community College’s Workforce Development Program.

The pilot project is the result of Flint water outreach meetings held with residents, the Ruth Mott Foundation, Community Foundation of Greater Flint, United Way, University of Michigan-Flint, State of Michigan and other community organizations. Flint residents identified gaps in services related to the water crisis and said they feared some residents are still drinking lead contaminated water.

“We listened to the residents of Flint and we heard concerns that some are not getting the information or critical water resources they need,” said Handy Lindsey, president of the Ruth Mott Foundation. “This pilot program was designed to reach every house in a neighborhood and make sure families have access to safe and clean water.”

The project will provide a template for the water expo and door-to-door delivery that, if necessary, can be replicated by community groups in other neighborhoods where residents are in need of water resources.

“The United Way is committed to responding to the community’s immediate needs related to water,” said Jamie Gaskin, CEO of the United Way of Genesee County. “This partnership is just one of the ways we’re helping Flint residents get what they need amid the crisis.”

At the Civic Park expo, residents will get important information about lead mitigation and will be able to sign up for Double Up Food Bucks, expanded Medicaid services and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Water, filters, baby wipes and other items will be given out to participants, and a free cookout and musical entertainment are also planned.

From 1-2:30 p.m., a Flint water panel discussion will be held with representatives from the State of Michigan and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The pilot project is the result of significant collaboration among residents, grassroots organizations, nonprofits and governmental agencies. In addition to the partners already mentioned, others include American Red Cross, Civic Park Neighborhood Association, Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, Michigan Faith in Action, Michigan Works! and the Michigan Emergency Operations Center.

For more information about the Flint water crisis and how local organizations are responding to it, visit www.flintcares.com.

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Community invited to celebrate Applewood Estate’s milestone anniversary at 100th Birthday Party on June 23

FLINT, Michigan, June 20, 2016 – The community is invited to celebrate a milestone and sing “Happy Birthday” to one of Flint’s treasured landmarks.

Applewood Estate, the former Flint family home and gentleman’s farm of automotive pioneer Charles Stewart Mott, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year – and the public is invited to a free community birthday party from 5-8 p.m. on Thursday, June 23.

A cake-cutting ceremony with the Ruth Mott Foundation Board of Trustees is planned for 6 p.m. Other highlights include horses in the historic barn, strolling house tours, lawn games, pony rides, petting zoo, apple cake and a photo booth, in addition to music and dance by a local group, El Ballet Folklorico Estudiantil. Guests can also create birthday cards to be donated to the Genesee County “Meals on Wheels” program for senior citizens.

Applewood Estate, 1400 E. Kearsley St., was built in 1916 by Mott, one of the founding partners of General Motors. The estate is now owned and maintained by the Ruth Mott Foundation and located between the Flint Cultural Center and Mott Community College.

As part of the 2016 centennial celebration, Applewood is open to the public more than ever before, and for the first time the house is now open for free public tours – with online reservations strongly suggested. The grounds at Applewood have been opened on occasion since Ruth Mott passed away in 1999, but this is the first year the general public gets to tour inside the Mott family home. House tour reservations will not be needed during the birthday party event June 23.

Applewood is open from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Thursday to Sunday until Oct. 30, and admission is always free.

The transformation of Applewood from a family home to a public resource was the vision of C.S. Mott’s late wife, Ruth Mott, who wanted to open it up in honor of her late husband and his significant contributions to Flint and the automotive industry. The estate was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979 and received an official Michigan Historical Marker in May.

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Ruth Mott Foundation names new vice president, announces staff changes

FLINT, Michigan, May 23, 2016 – The Ruth Mott Foundation has named a new vice president and hired several new staff members to help drive the progress of its recently developed strategic plan to focus on improving quality of life for residents in north Flint.

Raquel Thueme, formerly program director, has been promoted to vice president of programs. In this elevated role, Thueme is a senior member of the leadership team and works closely with the Ruth Mott Foundation president to ensure all operations align with the Foundation’s priorities. Since her hiring in 2011, Thueme has been responsible for the program team’s development, implementation and evaluation of grants awarded by the Foundation.

“Raquel’s drive and dedication to Flint helped guide us into this new chapter,” said Handy Lindsey, president of the Ruth Mott Foundation. “She’s committed to making sure north Flint residents have a voice in our decision-making process and having her fill this new role is a perfect fit for the Ruth Mott Foundation team.”

Thueme previously served as president and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit. She also worked for many years in the health care industry in several executive leadership capacities. She has a master’s degree from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University.

In other program team changes, Liz Delaney has been hired as learning officer and Elizabeth Jordan was promoted to senior program officer. In the newly created learning officer position, Delaney will develop a framework for measuring and reporting the Foundation’s progress against the goals outlined in its new strategic plan to focus its grantmaking resources in north Flint.

The Foundation has also filled an existing position and added three new positions at Applewood Estate, the historic Flint home of automotive baron Charles Stewart Mott, which is owned and operated by the Ruth Mott Foundation and is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.

Malcolm Cottle fills the role of collections assistant, working with the Foundation’s director of collections & education to manage programs, archives and other activities at Applewood. In addition, Renee Saba has been hired to the new role of education & events coordinator, and Courtney Bean and Trevor Norman were hired as part-time visitor experience specialists.

Saba is responsible for developing and coordinating educational programming and events at Applewood and in the community. Bean and Norman are tasked with helping to coordinate tours and other activities at the estate while ensuring exceptional customer service to Applewood visitors.

The staff changes were implemented as part of the Ruth Mott Foundation’s new 2016-20 strategic plan. The plan was developed after a comprehensive community engagement process that led the Foundation to focus its grant-making activities in north Flint, an area with significant challenges that could benefit from concentrated resources. The plan also includes a goal to make Applewood Estate more accessible to Flint residents and the general public.

Other previously announced staff changes as part of the strategic plan include the addition of a community engagement officer and director of communications.

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Ten Philanthropies Will Help Flint Recover and Rise from Water Crisis

FLINT, Michigan, May 11, 2016 — Ten foundations today announced they will work together to help the city of Flint recover and rise from its water crisis. Participants plan to commit a total of nearly $125 million to the collaborative effort.

The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, FlintNOW Foundation, Ford Foundation, The Hagerman Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Ruth Mott Foundation, Skillman Foundation and W.K. Kellogg Foundation are initial supporters. Additional partners are expected to announce their support soon.

“Flint’s water crisis is far from over. While some funds and services have been provided, we’re still waiting for the state and federal governments to step up, replace damaged infrastructure and make long-term commitments to the health and education of children,” said Ridgway White, president of the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, which is headquartered in Flint. “Today our foundations are stepping in to help. We envision a vibrant Flint with a robust economy, dynamic culture, and healthy, thriving residents, and we’re committed to achieving these goals.”

The collaborative funding initiative will focus on six priorities. Each will be supported by one or more of the participating philanthropies.

  • Ensuring That all Flint Residents Have Safe Drinking Water — As government works to replace damaged infrastructure, foundations will fund ongoing, independent water testing. Some of the funds will support experts who will work to ensure that the community will benefit from a 21st century approach to the efficient, integrated management of drinking water, storm water and waste water.
  • Meeting the Health Needs of Flint Families — As one part of efforts to support the health needs of Flint families, there will be a dollar-for-dollar match of up to $5 million on donations made to the Flint Child Health & Development Fund through December 31, 2016. The fund was established at the Community Foundation of Greater Flint with an initial donation from Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, whose research on elevated blood lead levels among Flint children demonstrated the severity of the crisis. It’s intended to provide support over the next 20 years for interventions that will help Flint children overcome the effects of lead exposure. It’s estimated that such long-term interventions will require at least $100 million in support. Prior to the $5 million matching grant, the Community Foundation already had succeeded in raising $6 million for the fund, and has thus far granted $263,000 of that amount. Grants from the fund are advised by a committee of community members, including representation from residents, Hurley Children’s Hospital, Mott Children’s Health Center, Greater Flint Health Coalition, United Way of Genesee County, and the Community Foundation of Greater Flint. For more information on the fund or to make a donation, visit flintkids.org.
  • Supporting Early Education — To help ensure that children age 6 and under in Flint will have access to Early Start, Head Start and Great Start Readiness programs, the initiative will help to identify and prepare classroom, playground and other space to house these early education programs, while the state of Michigan is expected to provide funding for the programs themselves.
  • Building a More Robust Non-Profit Sector — Local community organizations have been heroic in their response to Flint’s water crisis, and they are stretched thin as a result. The funding initiative will support the area’s nonprofit partners and help them expand their ability to serve the needs of local residents.
  • Promoting Community Engagement — Flint residents must have a voice in planning the city’s dynamic future. By promoting civic engagement and local decision-making, the initiative aims to guarantee that people with the closest ties to the community will have the greatest say in determining its future.
  • Revitalizing Flint’s Economy — After decades of decline, the local economy had just begun to show initial signs of recovery when the drinking water crisis dealt another major blow. The initiative will restart and accelerate progress, dedicating significant resources toward forging a new economic future for the city and region, supporting job training and entrepreneurship, and building on Flint’s cultural and creative heritage.

“The residents of Flint have endured an unimaginable crisis with grace, perseverance and resolve,” said Rip Rapson, president and CEO of The Kresge Foundation. “Philanthropy has a responsibility to assist community organizations and the people of Flint and elevate the national discussion on issues including aging infrastructure, civic engagement and capacity, social justice and public health.”

The 10 founding sponsors of the collaborative funding initiative are:
  • Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, committing up to $50 million over the first year and up to $100 million total over five years, with grants across all six priority areas, as well as investments in K – 12 education;
  • FlintNOW Foundation, committing continued support from a $10 million pledge to aid in a broad range of relief and revitalization efforts in Flint. To date, FlintNOW has helped generate millions of dollars in aid for a variety of short- and long-term programs focused on immediate relief, children’s health and education, and long-term economic development;
  • W.K. Kellogg Foundation, committing up to $5 million over the next year to support children’s education, health and well-being, backed by significant investments in community engagement;
  • The Kresge Foundation, committing up to $2.5 million for operations and recovery programs of select nonprofit partners, grants that build on the Foundation’s expertise in community development, health, and human services, and exploration of future support to enhance civic capacity and community engagement;
  • Carnegie Corporation of New York, committing $1 million to support the educational needs of children in Flint;
  • Ford Foundation, committing $1 million over three years to the health needs of the Flint community;
  • The Hagerman Foundation, committing $1 million over the first year to support the non-profit sector and efforts to revitalize Flint’s economy, with plans to support education, health and wellness for children and their families for years to come;
  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, committing a total of $1 million to support children’s health needs through the Flint Child Health & Development Fund of the Community Foundation of Greater Flint, and to an evaluation of how the community is recovering in the immediate and long term;
  • Ruth Mott Foundation, committing $1 million for the short- and long-term needs of Flint children and adults, in addition to investments already made in priorities identified by residents;
  • Skillman Foundation, committing $500,000 immediately, with the potential for an additional $1.5 million over the next three years, to support civic capacity, childhood health and nutrition, and childhood literacy.

“We believe partnership will pave the way to a brighter future for Flint’s children, and our collective efforts to support Flint must engage people in the community,” said La June Montgomery Tabron, president and CEO of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. “We encourage other foundations, businesses and all communities to join with us and make the necessary investments so all children in Flint have an equal opportunity to thrive.”

More information: C.S. Mott Foundation

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Applewood Estate, Flint home of automotive pioneer Charles Stewart Mott, awarded Michigan Historical Marker amid 100th anniversary celebration

FLINT, Michigan, May 5, 2016 – The Michigan Historical Commission has honored Applewood: The Charles Stewart Mott Estate with a new historical marker as the estate celebrates its centennial and opens its doors to the public for the first time.

The official Michigan Historical Marker was unveiled at a dedication ceremony during Applewood’s grand opening on Thursday, May 5. The Ruth Mott Foundation, which owns and operates Applewood, opened the historic residence for free public tours Thursday, revealing pieces of the Mott family estate that were never before seen by the general public in honor of Applewood’s 100th anniversary.

Opening Applewood as a community resource was the wish of Charles Stewart Mott’s wife, the late Ruth Mott, who set out to transform the estate into a public memorial to her husband after he passed away in 1973.

“This historical marker is really a tribute to the generosity of Ruth Mott and Charles Stewart Mott, who dedicated much of their lives to improving the Flint community,” said Handy Lindsey, president of the Ruth Mott Foundation. “Ruth Mott’s vision is becoming a reality as the community gets to see a piece of Charles Stewart Mott’s legacy that most people have never seen before.”

Mott was a founding partner in General Motors, a prominent philanthropist and former mayor of Flint. His family home was built in Flint in 1916 in a Jacobean Revival style and named Applewood Estate in part due to the estate’s apple orchard, which is still thriving today.

In 1951, Mott donated Applewood’s former pasture land, along with additional funds, to help expand what is now Mott Community College.

Shortly after Mott passed away, Ruth Mott began planning for the future of Applewood Estate’s 34 remaining acres. Her wish was for the property to commemorate her husband’s contributions to Flint and the automotive industry. A philanthropist in her own right, she envisioned Applewood as a place of beauty and a community resource for the public to enjoy.

“Community is what these historical markers are all about. Not just the local community but the Michigan community as well,” said Jack Dempsey, president of the Michigan Historical Commission. “It’s self-evident why Applewood deserves a Michigan Historical Marker.”

Applewood was granted a listing on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.

After Ruth Mott passed away in 1999, the Ruth Mott Foundation opened the grounds for public tours and work began to preserve the house.

The commencement of the public house tours in 2016 coincides with the Ruth Mott Foundation’s new strategic plan, which includes making Applewood more available to the community. In addition to the Mott family home, visitors can also tour the colorful gardens, barn and chicken coop. The historic garage, once home to Mott’s beloved cars, is now lined with hands-on exhibits. Admission to Applewood is always free.

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Ruth Mott Foundation to debut public tours inside home at Applewood: The Charles Stewart Mott Estate in celebration of 100th anniversary

FLINT, Michigan, April 28, 2016 – An exciting piece of Flint’s rich automotive history is about to be revealed to the general public for the first time.

Applewood Estate, the Flint family home of industrial pioneer Charles Stewart Mott, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year and introducing free tours of the historic residence that include areas never before seen by the general public. Centennial events planned throughout 2016 offer an opportunity to shine a bright spotlight on Flint and spread community pride.

The fun kicks off during the Grand Opening, Thursday, May 5, with an unveiling ceremony for Applewood Estate’s historic marker planned for 12:30 p.m.

Also new for 2016 are interactive exhibits, including portraits that “come to life” inside the home, that provide visitors with insight into one of the Flint area’s most prominent families.

As part of the centennial celebration, Applewood is increasing public access to four days a week with more family fun and programming than ever before. The grounds and home will be open Thursday to Sunday from May 5 through Oct. 30.

In addition to the Mott family home, visitors can also tour the gardens, barn and chicken coop. The historic garage, once home to Mott’s beloved cars, is now lined with hands-on exhibits.

The best part? All the events, activities and exhibits are absolutely free all season long.

Applewood Estate, 1400 E. Kearsley St., was built in 1916 by Mott, one of the founding partners of General Motors. The residence and 34 remaining acres of the estate are now owned and maintained by the Ruth Mott Foundation and located between the Flint Cultural Center and Mott Community College. The estate was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.

Applewood was designed to be a beautiful and practical estate, including recreational opportunities, flower and vegetable gardens and a farming operation that once had dairy cows, horses, pigs, and poultry. The landscape design incorporated an old apple orchard already on the property.

The transformation of Applewood from a family home to a public resource was the vision of C.S. Mott’s wife, Ruth Mott, who wanted to open it up in honor of her husband and his significant contributions to Flint and the automotive industry. With its colorful gardens and expansive grounds, she also envisioned Applewood as a place of beauty and a community resource for the public to enjoy. The gardens and grounds at Applewood were opened to the public after Ruth Mott passed away in 1999, but the house will be opened for the first time for public tours this year.

“This centennial is a celebration we want the whole Flint community to enjoy,” said Handy Lindsey, Ruth Mott Foundation president. “Flint was home to C.S. Mott and his family, and we want Applewood to be a welcoming retreat and resource for Flint residents and all our visitors. Our goal this year is to open up even more avenues for people to get to know Applewood and the Ruth Mott Foundation.”

Applewood Centennial Highlights:

  • The home is open to the public for the first time. New guided house tours begin in May and visitors can reserve a spot on the website, ruthmottfoundation.org/reservations/. Reservations are strongly suggested because tour group sizes are limited. Walk-ins are accepted if space is available.
  • A new book about Applewood was published in honor of the 100th anniversary and will be available for sale on site. “Applewood: The Charles Stewart Mott Estate | One Hundred Years of Stories, 1916-2016” contains beautiful color images of the house and gardens as well as never-before-seen historic photos and excerpts from Mott family materials preserved in the Ruth Mott Foundation Archive.
  • A complete biography of C.S. Mott by noted biographer Vincent Curcio is in the works.

Applewood’s centennial coincides with the Ruth Mott Foundation’s new 2016-20 strategic plan. After a comprehensive community engagement process, the foundation focused its grant-making activities in north Flint, an area with significant challenges that could benefit from concentrated resources. The strategy also includes a plan to make Applewood Estate more accessible to Flint residents and the general public.

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New era in grantmaking begins at Ruth Mott Foundation with $1.3 million awarded under new north Flint strategy

FLINT, Michigan, April 13, 2016 The Ruth Mott Foundation today announced it is awarding $1.3 million in grants under its new strategy to strengthen north Flint neighborhoods and create opportunities for residents to contribute and thrive.

The new grants signify an exciting era for the foundation, which in November launched its five-year strategic plan to concentrate grant-making resources in north Flint and give voice to an often underrepresented group of residents.

The $1,292,450 announced Wednesday will go toward 10 programs that represent four priority areas chosen during an intensive community engagement process initiated in 2015 as part of the foundation’s commitment to let north Flint residents drive its grant-making strategy. The Ruth Mott Foundation believes that focusing on a defined area with significant challenges – and engaging the residents in that area to help determine solutions – will result in a greater positive impact.

“Too often, residents of Flint go unheard and it’s critical for us to lift up their voices and make them a part of the process,” said Handy Lindsey, president of the Ruth Mott Foundation. “We went to the residents first with our new strategy, and now we’re able to deploy our resources from the ground up. Throughout this entire process, we’re gathering input from people in north Flint about what they need to improve their lives and their neighborhoods.”

The foundation has defined north Flint as the city limits on the west, north and east sides, and Flushing Road/5th Avenue/Robert T. Longway Boulevard to the south.

After a comprehensive series of eight community forums with more than 500 participants, the Ruth Mott Foundation used residents’ feedback to narrow its focus on priority areas that would help improve quality of life in north Flint. The four main priority areas are youth, safety, economic opportunity and neighborhoods, and specific themes within those areas include youth programs out of school hours, blight, job training and neighborhood centers.

Included in the newly approved grants are $368,000 awarded to Genesee County Habitat for Humanity for the Urban Renaissance Center’s Civic Park Revitalization Initiative, and $280,000 awarded to the United Way of Genesee County for Friends of Berston to operate Berston Field House.

The United Way/Friends of Berston grant will help Berston Field House continue as a neighborhood hub and offer even more youth programs and activities. The goal is to restore and build upon Berston’s rich history and storied legacy in north Flint.

“The United Way of Genesee County couldn’t be more excited to continue to grow its partnerships with Berston Field House and the Ruth Mott Foundation,” said Jamie Gaskin, CEO of the United Way of Genesee County. “These funds are critical to ensuring youth and adults in the north Flint community have access to important recreational and enrichment opportunities.”

The Habitat for Humanity grant will help the Urban Renaissance Center boost its employment programs that serve ex-offenders and other chronically unemployed people in the Civic Park neighborhood in north Flint. An exciting plan to repurpose a vacant home as a neighborhood museum of Civic Park history is also proposed as part of the grant program.

“Our goal is to help build the capacity of Urban Renaissance Center so they can be well positioned to help residents find employment and build hope and pride in the Civic Park neighborhood,” said Margaret Kato, executive director of Habitat for Humanity.

In all, 10 grants were approved by the Ruth Mott Foundation Board of Trustees in April.

Project/Program Name Grantee Amount
URC Civic Park Revitalization Initiative

 

Genesee County Habitat for Humanity

 

$368,000

 

Friends of Berston

 

United Way of Genesee County

 

$280,000

 

YMCA Youth Programs 2016

 

YMCA of Greater Flint

 

$150,000

 

Mr. Gaines Gardening Program PLUS

 

Catholic Charities of Shiawassee & Genesee Counties

 

$100,000

 

Social Enterprise Expansion

 

St. Luke NEW Life Center

 

$96,000

 

Raise it UP! Youth Arts and Awareness

 

United Way of Genesee County

 

$92,250

 

Creating Economic Opportunity in North Flint

 

Genesee Chamber Foundation

 

$88,000

 

North Flint Former Prisoner Project

 

Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency

 

$50,000

 

North Flint Unemployment Insurance Project

 

Regents of the University of Michigan

 

$40,000

 

Buckham/GVRC Share Art Project

 

Buckham Fine Arts Project

 

$28,200

 

The grants are on top of $1 million the Board of Trustees has pledged in response to the Flint water crisis.

Moving forward, the foundation is committed to continuing to listen to north Flint residents and will modify its strategic plan as the community’s priorities evolve.

“As Flint has changed, the Ruth Mott Foundation must also shift to align with the community,” Lindsey said. “With this new sense of collective direction, we will invest in what matters to and makes a difference for north Flint residents.”

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Tryphena Clarke hired as community engagement officer as Ruth Mott Foundation embarks on new strategic plan

FLINT, Michigan, March 30, 2016 – The Ruth Mott Foundation has hired Tryphena Clarke, a lifelong Flint resident with a proven ability to work at the neighborhood level, as its community engagement officer.

Starting in April, Clarke will be a liaison between the foundation and the community, and will work to identify ways to help north Flint neighborhoods thrive. She will be responsible for ensuring that foundation programming is informed by and driven by north Flint residents.

As community engagement officer, Clarke is stepping into a new, one-of-a-kind role. She will work from an office in north Flint as she maintains strong relationships with neighborhood residents, grantees and other key stakeholders.

The Ruth Mott Foundation developed the community engagement officer position as a critical element of its recently developed strategic plan, which concentrates the foundation’s grantmaking activities in north Flint – an area with significant challenges that will benefit from focused resources.

“Tryphena is an ideal hire for this position because of her wealth of knowledge of the Flint community and her commitment to effecting positive change,” said Ruth Mott Foundation President Handy Lindsey. “Her ability to organize at the grassroots level and her passion for the city will serve us well as the foundation grows its presence in north Flint.”

Clarke has a decade of experience working with social service agencies in the city of Flint, most recently as director of the Building Neighborhood Capacity Program at Metro Community Development. She previously worked at WOW Outreach, Resource Genesee and My Brother’s Keeper.

Clarke, who lives in north Flint, is a Baker College of Flint graduate pursuing her master’s degree in social work from Michigan State University.

The Ruth Mott Foundation currently grants about $6 million annually to help strengthen neighborhoods and create opportunities for residents to thrive in Flint. The foundation recently developed its new 2016-20 strategic plan with the belief that concentrating on a defined area with significant challenges will grow positive change in north Flint.

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Ruth Mott Foundation hires Kristin Longley as director of communications amid new strategic plan

FLINT, Michigan, March 9, 2016 – The Ruth Mott Foundation is naming Kristin Longley, an experienced journalist with a deep knowledge and love of the Flint community, to serve as its director of communications.

Longley will lead the foundation’s communications activities, including media relations and social media strategy, effective March 21. She will also help spread the word about the uplifting work of the foundation’s grantees and help maintain the website.

This is a new position created as part of the foundation’s recently developed strategic plan to help the residents of north Flint build a thriving and sustainable community.

“We are thrilled to bring Kristin aboard during this exciting period of change at the foundation,” said Ruth Mott Foundation President Handy Lindsey. “Her commitment to Flint and her experience with digital and social media will help support the foundation’s mission as we strengthen our grantmaking activities in north Flint.”

Longley brings with her over a decade of media experience, including recently serving as community engagement specialist at The Flint Journal, where she also served as an assistant editor and reporter. She previously worked at the Jackson Citizen-Patriot and The Associated Press in Detroit.

She is a graduate of Michigan State University and lives in Grand Blanc with her husband and two dogs.

“The Ruth Mott Foundation is committed to making a difference in Flint and so am I,” Longley said. “It’s exciting to be a part of an organization that’s focusing its resources in an effort to see real change, and I’m looking forward to carrying the foundation’s inspiring message out in the community.”

The Ruth Mott Foundation currently grants about $6 million annually to help strengthen neighborhoods and create opportunities for residents to thrive in Flint. The foundation recently developed its new 2016-20 strategic plan with the belief that concentrating on a defined area with significant challenges will grow positive change in the community

For more information, please contact Handy Lindsey at 810-233-0170.

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Ruth Mott Foundation Commits $1 Million to Address Flint Water Crisis

Flint, Michigan, February 24, 2016 – The Ruth Mott Foundation Board of Trustees has dedicated $1 million in funding to address the Flint water crisis.

“We feel great compassion for our community and we are compelled to act knowing that the water situation clearly impacts the health and vitality of every resident. We have made this pledge to support Flint residents during this crisis,” said RMF Chair Maryanne Mott.

The $1 million in funding will be directed toward short term and long term needs of Flint’s children and adults exposed to lead.

Two initial grants have been awarded from this commitment. The first grant is $90,000 to the United Way of Genesee County for its ongoing efforts as a community connector and resource for water crisis emergency response systems. The second grant is a $150,000 contribution to the Flint Child Health and Development Fund at the Community Foundation of Greater Flint. The Fund is a supplemental resource to the ongoing pursuit of state and federal funding to aid children with health, nutrition and education interventions that support positive outcomes for Flint’s children exposed to lead.

“While it is essential for the foundation to address the water crisis through this financial support, as a Flint place-based funder we are here to work in partnership with the community to implement solutions to this and other issues that contribute to a better future for Flint residents,” said Handy Lindsey, RMF President.

As a result, the $1 million dedicated to the Flint water crisis will not reduce the foundation’s commitment to implementing its strategic plan in north Flint. That work will proceed making use of an array of resources including grantmaking as well as the foundation’s ability to engage with residents, convene community leaders, and present Applewood as a unique venue for learning, technical assistance, engagement and reflection.

The Ruth Mott Foundation’s mission is to advocate, stimulate, and support community vitality. The foundation envisions communities of hope and pride, whose neighborhood environments and urban core are safe, attractive and healthy, enriched by cultural diversity and an engaged citizenry.

For more information, please contact Handy Lindsey at 810-233-0170.

Ruth Mott Foundation welcomes Charles Meynet to the Board of Trustees as Board Observer

Flint, Michigan, December 1, 2015 –The Ruth Mott Foundation welcomes Charles Alexander Mott Meynet as Board Observer to the Board of Trustees.

The Chapman University graduate earned his bachelor degree in Computer Information Systems with a minor in Economics in 2014. He is currently a Product Manager with Salesforce in the San Francisco area. His philanthropic interests include economic development, impact investing, and education.

He is the great-grandson of Charles Stewart and Ruth Rawlings Mott, and the grandson of Maryanne Mott.

“Charles follows a strong philanthropic tradition by the Mott family and the board observer role prepares the next generation for service to the Foundation and Flint,” said RMF President Handy Lindsey.

The Ruth Mott Foundation is a private foundation committed to promoting the health and vitality of our home community of Flint and the surrounding area. We envision a healthy community that is economically strong and culturally vibrant, where all residents are empowered to access the resources needed to see and shape their future.

For more information please contact Handy Lindsey at 810-233-0170.

Rafael C. Turner joins the Ruth Mott Foundation as Program Officer

Flint, MI, September 21, 2015 – The Ruth Mott Foundation has hired Rafael C. Turner of Grand Blanc, Michigan as a Program Officer. Turner will join the Foundation on October 19. 

“Rafael brings great experience from the public, private and volunteer sectors to his new role at the Foundation. He has worked to champion policies, education and resources designed to improve community conditions in Flint and the region and we are excited for him to join our team,” said Raquel Thueme, Program Director of the Ruth Mott Foundation.

The Flint Native earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Michigan University in Communications and a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Michigan-Flint. He resides in Grand Blanc, Michigan with his wife and three children.

Prior to joining the Ruth Mott Foundation, Turner served as a Senior Consultant with the Flint Area Reinvestment Office where he was responsible for identifying new federal and state funding opportunities and sharing those opportunities with various local nonprofit organizations throughout Flint and Genesee County. The bulk of Rafael’s career has been as a key congressional team member, most notably for more than a decade in the office of (retired) U.S. Congressman Dale E. Kildee, beginning as an intern in his Capitol Hill office and later in his Flint District office, where he served in a variety of roles including Constituent Services Representative and ultimately Deputy District Director.

For the past four years, he has served on the Board of Trustees of Mott Community College and is a national board member on the Association of Community College Trustees, as well as the organization’s Diversity and Public Policy Committees. He was recently appointed to the Board of Trustees for the Community Foundation of Greater Flint.

The Ruth Mott Foundation, located in Flint, currently grants about $6 million annually to support new ideas in arts and culture, beautification and health promotion in Flint and Genesee County.

For more information please contact Andrea Bergstrom at 810-396-3401.

Ruth Mott Foundation welcomes Shannon Easter White to board of trustees

Flint, Michigan, July 2, 2015 – Flint native Shannon Easter White, who founded FUNchitecture a Flint-based design solution firm, has joined the board of trustees of the Flint-based Ruth Mott Foundation.

The Carman-Ainsworth High School graduate and University of Michigan-Master of Architecture alumnus launched her career at PDA Architecture (now inForm studio) and then worked for 10 years with THA Architects Engineers. After the birth of her first child, Shannon started FUNchitecture to focus her talents on working with FUN clients desiring FUNctional design solutions while balancing her new role as a mom.

“I’m thrilled at the opportunity to continue to pay it forward to this community through proactive and innovative grantmaking and programs with the Ruth Mott Foundation,” says White. “My personal beliefs and professional actions over the past 15 years perfectly align with RMF’s charge to advocate, stimulate, and support community vitality and I can’t wait to be an active part in moving this community forward!”

White also serves on numerous non-profit boards and understands that successful communities are the result of involved residents who care about where they live. She will lead the Community Foundation of Greater Flint through their new strategic plan when she takes over as board chair there in early 2016. Shannon currently serves on the governing boards of the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, the American Institute of Architects and the Flint Institute of Arts.

“Shannon’s dynamic personality, high standards and deep experience in this community make her an ideal addition to our Board,” said Maryanne Mott, chair of the Ruth Mott Foundation’s board of trustees.

Ruth Rawlings Mott established the Ruth Mott Foundation as a means of extending the reach of her philanthropy beyond her lifetime with a continued presence in Flint, Michigan.

Her values and conduct inspire the Foundation to be inclusive, welcoming, and egalitarian, to act with kindness and good humor, treat all people with respect and dignity, encourage personal responsibility, practice prevention, and maintain “the long view”.

Since its inception, the Ruth Mott Foundation has invested through direct grants and foundation administered programs nearly $93 million in promoting healthy living, appreciation of the arts and culture and vibrant neighborhoods for the residents of greater Flint.

 

Joyce A. Bobolts joins the Ruth Mott Foundation as Director of Finance and Administration

February 18, 2015, Flint, MI – The Ruth Mott Foundation has hired Joyce A. Bobolts of Grand Rapids, Michigan to fill the Director of Finance and Administration position.

Bobolts will provide leadership for the Ruth Mott Foundation’s finance, accounting, grants management, human resources and office administration functions.

“We are delighted to have someone of Joyce’s experience, energy, and leadership join the staff as the Director of Finance,” said Handy Lindsey Jr., President of the Ruth Mott Foundation.

“It’s exciting to be able to leverage more than twenty-years of experience in Philanthropy to help further the mission of the Ruth Mott Foundation,” says Bobolts. “I’m looking forward to moving closer to extended family and getting to know the Flint community. Everyone has been so welcoming it already feels like home.”

The Michigan native earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters of Business Administration degree in accounting from Michigan State University. She and her husband grew up in Saginaw, Michigan and have two adult sons that both reside here as well.

Prior to joining the Ruth Mott Foundation, Bobolts served as Director of Finance at the Frey Foundation in Grand Rapids, Michigan for twenty-one years. There she served as a trusted member of the Foundation’s executive leadership team and advised the Foundation’s President and Trustees on important financial, investment, office operations, human resources and IT matters.

Bobolts previously worked for Ernst & Young as a tax consultant. 

The Ruth Mott Foundation, located in Flint, currently grants about $6 million annually to support new ideas in arts and culture, beautification and health promotion in Flint and Genesee County.

Ruth Mott Foundation Appoints President

1The Board of Trustees of the Ruth Mott Foundation has appointed Handy Lindsey, Jr. to be the Foundation’s next President commencing September 1, 2014. Lindsey is a well-respected philanthropic leader with over 30 years of experience with the Chicago Community Trust, the East St. Louis Community Foundation, the Field Foundation of Illinois, which he directed for 15 years, and the Cameron Foundation in Petersburg, Virginia, where he served as its inaugural chief executive officer from 2004 to 2013.

“We are thrilled to welcome Handy to Flint and to the Ruth Mott Foundation,” Board Chair, Maryanne Mott, stated. “Handy has a wealth of knowledge about family foundations, community foundations, and the larger world of philanthropy where he is regarded as a mentor and trailblazer. Many of the communities where Handy has worked share characteristics similar to Genesee County, Michigan,” Ms. Mott noted.

Mr. Lindsey earned his bachelor degree from the University of Chicago and also holds an MA degree from the School of Social Service Administration and an MBA from the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago. He served for seven years as a Commissioner for the Chicago Housing Authority, was on the board of directors of the Council on Foundations, led Grantmakers for Effective Organizations as its chairman, and also served as vice chairman of the Association of Black Foundation Executives.

Lawrence Moon, a Trustee of the Foundation and a Flint business leader, stated that “Handy Lindsey has the education, experience and enterprise to lead the Board and the Staff of the Ruth Mott Foundation to continue and enhance its positive impact on the Flint community, but most importantly, Handy has a real passion for this work and he knows how to listen and respond to community needs and priorities.”

“It’s an honor to be chosen as the next President of the Ruth Mott Foundation,” Lindsey declared. “Working with this Board of dedicated Trustees and a remarkably talented Staff will be a privilege, and I look forward to meeting and exchanging ideas with our partners throughout the Greater Flint region as we work together to build a stronger and healthier community.”

The Ruth Mott Foundation, created in 1999 upon the passing of Mrs. Mott, operates Applewood, the 34-acre Mott family estate and gardens, and engages in grantmaking to maintain and enhance the vitality of Flint. The Foundation envisions communities of hope and pride, whose neighborhood environments and urban core are safe, attractive and healthy, enriched by cultural diversity and an engaged citizenry.

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Opportunities in the Community

Opportunities in the Community will be posted as they become available.

 
 
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