Published in Talent

People in the News: July 5, 2022

BY Sunday, July 03, 2022 06:22pm

Here is the MiBiz People in the news report for July 5, 2022 


  • Susan Jandernoa has been named chairperson of Grand Valley State University’s Board of Trustees. Jandernoa has served as a trustee since 2019 and recently as vice chairperson. Jandernoa, a former longtime elementary school teacher, now dedicates most of her time to community service, serving on the boards of Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan, First Steps of Kent County, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital Foundation, Broadway Grand Rapids, ArtPrize and the Michigan Health Endowment Fund. Elizabeth Emmitt, an adviser for Spectrum Health who previously served as deputy chief of staff for Gov. Rick Snyder, was named vice chairperson to the GVSU board. 



  • Haviland Enterprises Inc., a chemical manufacturer and distributor based in Grand Rapids, has appointed Meg Post as president and CEO. She will succeed Mike Karasiewicz, who retired on July 1 after four years. Post has been with Haviland since 2018 and has served as vice president of finance and chief financial officer as well as president. Prior to joining Haviland, she was a finance and valuation adviser at Adamy Valuation for more than a decade. Post will also succeed Karasiewicz on Haviland’s board of directors.



  • United Way Worldwide, the world’s largest privately funded charity, has named Whirlpool Corp. Chairman and CEO Marc Bitzer as chairperson of its board of trustees. Bitzer brings more than 25 years of executive leadership experience to the position. He has been with Whirlpool since 1999, serving as vice president of Whirlpool Europe, president of Whirlpool North America and president of U.S. operations. Bitzer has served on the United Way Worldwide board since 2018.


  • Covenant House Michigan, a nonprofit focused on youth homelessness with campuses in Detroit and Grand Rapids, has named Meagan Dunn as its next CEO. Dunn will succeed Gerry Piro, who plans to retire July 11 after eight years. Dunn has previously served as vice president of programs at YWCA Kalamazoo and director of community outreach and partnerships for Henry Ford Health System. Piro’s legacy includes leading the $4 million campaign to build the Grand Rapids campus and developing two major annual fundraising events that have now raised more than $4.3 million for Covenant House.



  • Grand Rapids-based virtual ADHD assessment and treatment organization ADHD Online has hired Dr. Gayle Jensen-Savoie as full-time division chief of psychology and Dr. Raafia Muhammad as full-time division chief of medicine and interim chief medical officer. Jensen-Savoie is a psychologist with 35 years of experience, most recently as field director for the Hospital Psychiatric Cadre at The Joint Commission. Muhammad holds a master’s of public health from Benedictine University and completed her internship at Brookdale University Hospital and her residency in preventive medicine and public health at the Texas Department of State Health Services.


  • Charles Gibson has been named Spectrum Health West Michigan’s vice president for medical affairs. Gibson is a graduate of the University of Louisville School of Medicine. He completed his residency at Grand Rapids Medical Education Partners through Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine and joined Spectrum Health West Michigan as an acute care surgeon in 2016. He recently chaired Spectrum Health Grand Rapids’ department of surgery and has served as medical director of surgical critical care and is part of the core faculty of the Spectrum Health General Surgery Residency Program and the Spectrum Health Surgical Critical Care Fellowship. 
  • Priority Health has named Kyla King as vice president of individual markets and Scott Norman as vice president for Medicare. King has been with Priority Health since 2012, most recently as director of marketing for individual, Medicaid and dual-eligible special needs markets. She has spearheaded data-driven growth in acquisitions and retention across those markets. Norman has nearly two decades of experience in insurance, most recently as vice president for business development at Physicians Health Plan, a division of Sparrow Health Systems, where he oversaw network development, strategic planning, sales, marketing and product development.
  • BHSH System — the company formed from the merger of Beaumont Health and Spectrum Health — has hired Carlos Cubia as chief inclusion, equity, diversity and sustainability officer. Cubia comes to BHSH from Walgreens Boots Alliance, where he has served as senior vice president and global chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer since 2017. He currently serves on the boards of the Chicago Urban League, the Chicago Sinfonietta, Hope Chicago and the National Diversity Council. At BHSH, Cubia will oversee the development and implementation of strategies to further sustainability, belonging, and health equity within the organization and for the communities it serves.


  • TowerPinkster, a design firm based in Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo, has promoted Perry Hausman to manager of the firm’s mechanical engineering department and Jesse Hendershot to supervisor of the department. Hausman, who has worked for the firm since 1999, is a member of the National Society of Professional Engineers, the U.S. Green Building Council and the Building Commissioning Association. He has been instrumental in several of TowerPinkster’s most iconic projects, including work with Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo Public Schools and the Warner Building in Kalamazoo. Hendershot earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Western Michigan University and is a LEED-accredited professional. He has worked on projects such as the Albertus Magnus Hall of Science at Aquinas College and projects with Ferris State University and Gerald R. Ford International Airport.



  • SpartanNash Co. has promoted Jean-Paul Calabio to vice president and chief information security officer. Calabio has worked in information security for SpartanNash since 2021. With more than 20 years of experience in the field, he has previously guided information security efforts at Alorica, Maple Leaf Foods Inc. and SC Johnson. In his new role, Calabio will oversee information security governance risk and compliance and information technology security operations and incident response.
  • GreenStone Farm Credit Services, Michigan’s largest agricultural lender, has appointed Travis Jones, who currently serves as executive vice president and chief financial officer, to succeed longtime CEO Dave Armstrong when he retires July 31. Armstrong has been with GreenStone for 41 years, including the last 14 as CEO. Jones joined GreenStone in 2007 and also serves on the board of the Michigan Finance Authority and is involved in youth development activities through the Michigan Future Farmers of America Association.

— Compiled by Abigail Ham.

Tuuk Kuras bowing out as GR Symphony leader

Grand Rapids Symphony President and CEO Mary Tuuk Kuras plans to retire at the end of the year after four years of leading the organization. 

During Tuuk Kuras’ tenure, the symphony expanded its partnerships with local arts organizations including Frederik Meijer Gardens, Grand Rapids Ballet and Opera Grand Rapids; celebrated its 90-year anniversary; invested in diversity, equity and inclusion efforts; and navigated the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tuuk Kuras took the helm in January 2019, not knowing how tumultuous the coming years would be with the ensuing course-shift. 

“The immediate thought I remember having was we were going to have to learn how to innovate and pivot very quickly,” Tuuk Kuras told MiBiz

By the end of March, the Symphony was assembling a fully digital production of the Hallelujah Chorus that would eventually be featured on national television.

Tuuk Kuras, a former executive at Meijer Inc. and Fifth Third Bank, has had a lifelong passion for music. She grew up playing organ, piano and violin, and studied music and business at Calvin University, where she was a member of the selective choir Capella. She went on to study law and business at Indiana University and then to a successful career in banking.

But life eventually brought her back to Grand Rapids and back to music. She joined the Grand Rapids Symphony board of directors after accepting a position at Meijer in 2015. When the opportunity arose to lead the Symphony as president and CEO, she jumped at the chance to combine her profession with her passion.

Under Tuuk Kuras, the Symphony is on track to operate with a balanced budget for the fourth consecutive year despite the pandemic’s disruptions. A balanced budget was a key priority when Tuuk Kuras stepped into the role, and she guided the Symphony through improving the efficiency of its structure and processes as well as developing new programming strategies to increase revenue. 

Unlike many arts organizations across the country, the Symphony hasn’t furloughed a single musician since the pandemic began. Tuuk Kuras credits the supportive community and board and the Symphony’s administrative team with the success. 

“I’ve always been very focused on recruiting good talent and spending time to develop and groom that talent, and I’m very proud of our administrative team,” Tuuk Kuras said.

Tuuk Kuras met her husband, Patrick, while singing in the Grand Rapids Community Chorus, and they married in 2020. They plan to use retirement to spend more time with their families and continue developing their musical skills.


— Reported by Abigail Ham.

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