COVID-19 Update: EY Announces Entrepreneurs of the Year, JPMorgan Chase Commits $30B to Advance Racial Equity, and More

Here is a roundup of the latest news concerning the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to announcements from local, state, and federal governments, as well as international channels. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
map of Michigan coronavirus cases
Courtesy of Bridge, as of Oct. 7

Here is a roundup of the latest news concerning the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to announcements from local, state, and federal governments, as well as international channels. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

Ernst & Young Announces Entrepreneurs of the Year
Detroit’s Ernst & Young announced the winners of its 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year Michigan and Northwest Ohio Award Thursday during the program’s first-ever virtual awards gala.

“There are many successful entrepreneurs in this world, but building something of long-term value takes grit, persistence and a sense of ambition where nothing is impossible,” says A.J. Jordan, director of the Entrepreneur of the Year program at EY Americas. “EY is proud to honor these unstoppable visionaries who are inspiring innovation without limitation and fueling growth around the globe. They are a wonderful addition to our global alumni community of past winners, and we look forward to serving as a resource as they continue to make an impact.”

The winners for the Entrepreneur of the Year 2020 Michigan and Northwest Ohio Award are:

  • Ryan Greenawalt, Alta Equipment of Livonia.
  • Raj Vattikuti, Altimetrik of Southfield.
  • Brad Baxter and Jacob Zuppke, AutoPets of Auburn Hills.
  • Justin Mast, Bloomscape of Detroit.
  • Eric J. Erwin, FloraCraft Corp. of Ludington.
  • Uma Sharma, MMS Holdings of Canton Township.
  • Gwen Jimmere, Naturalicious of Livonia.
  • Tom Shea, OneStream Software of Rochester.
  • Greg Kiley, Velocity, A Managed Services Company Inc. of Holland, Ohio.

To learn more about the program and watch a replay of the event, visit here.

JPMorgan Chase Commits $30B to Advance Racial Equity
JPMorgan Chase has announced new long-term commitments to advance racial equity. The firm will harness its expertise in business, policy, and philanthropy and commit an additional $30 billion over the next five years to provide economic opportunity to underserved communities, especially the Black and Latinx communities.

Building on the firm’s existing investments, this new commitment is designed to drive an inclusive economic recovery, support employees, and break down barriers of systemic racism.

“Systemic racism is a tragic part of America’s history,” says Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co. “We can do more and do better to break down systems that have propagated racism and widespread economic inequality, especially for Black and Latinx people. It’s long past time that society addresses racial inequities in a more tangible, meaningful way.”

Over the next five years, the firm expects these new commitments, which include loans, equity and direct funding, to promote and expand affordable housing and homeownership for underserved communities. Efforts will include:

  • Originating an additional 40,000 home purchase loans for Black and Latinx households.
  • Committing $8 billion in mortgages.
  • Improving key home lending products and offerings, including substantially increasing the Chase Homebuyer Grant in underserved communities.
  • Help an additional 20,000 Black and Latinx households achieve lower mortgage payments through refinancing loans.
  • Committing up to $4 billion in refinancing loans.
  • Financing an additional 100,000 affordable rental units.
  • Providing $14 billion in new loans, equity investments, and other efforts to expand affordable housing in underserved communities.
  • Investing additional capital in vital community institutions and increasing funding for the construction and rehabilitation of affordable housing for low and moderate-income households nationwide.

JPMorgan Chase also will provide an additional 15,000 loans ($2 billion) to small businesses in majority-Black and Latinx communities, improve financial health and access to banking in Black and Latinx Communities, and build a more diverse and inclusive workforce.

The firm will also provide $2 billion in philanthropic capital over the next five years to drive an inclusive economic recovery and support Black, Latinx and other underserved communities. This extends and increases the firm’s current five-year $1.75 billion philanthropic commitment made in 2018. It will also include an emphasis on supporting Black- and Latinx-led organizations.

Little Caesars Hosting Job Fair Oct. 10 in Redford Township
Detroit-based Little Caesars is hosting a job fair Oct. 10 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Little Caesars store in Redford Township (15839 Telegraph Rd.) to fill new full- and part-time positions at many of its company-owned stores throughout metro Detroit.

Available jobs include full-time managers and co-managers as well as part-time crew members and assistant managers. Interested applicants will have the chance to interview and be considered for on-the-spot hiring. Qualified candidates must have identification and fill out an I-9 form to be hired on-the-spot.

Ann Arbor’s Franworth Launches Franchise for Good Nonprofit
Ann Arbor’s Franworth has launched a nonprofit arm called Franchise for Good to help other nonprofits grow by leveraging Franworth’s expertise and 450 years of combined experience in scaling businesses through the franchising model.

Founded by Franworth President and COO Dave Keil, Franchise for Good is the only full-service agency in the nonprofit space offering a suite of flexible franchisor services for nonprofit organizations of all sizes an avenue for growth.

“Nonprofit organizations need to grow and innovate to survive just like for-profit businesses do,” says Keil. “Through Franchise for Good, we hope to make a positive impact in communities nationwide by providing great organizations with the resources they need to fuel sustainable growth and expand their missions and reach.

“As franchise industry veterans, we know the power of the franchise model and have seen firsthand how companies can use these tools to propel success. We’re excited for this incredible opportunity to apply franchising’s proven processes and playbooks in a new way and provide the nonprofit space with an innovative, best-in-class suite of support services.”

The first Franchise for Good partnership was recently signed with Colorado Homebuilding Academy, a nonprofit training organization to form BuildStrong Academy, a developmental program with a mission to develop more than 20 locations over 15 years and train 1 million under/unemployed people across the U.S. in trade jobs.

For more information, visit here.

Local Filmmaker to Premiere ‘It’s A Life Worth Living’ in Pontiac
“It’s A Life Worth Living,” a film written and directed by metro Detroit native Keith Perna, will make its Michigan premiere at Grace Gospel Fellowship Church (65 E. Huron St.) in Pontiac on Oct. 23, 24, 30, and 31 at 7 p.m.

“It’s A Life Worth Living” is a full-length feature film following the story the John Gesler, a man haunted by his upbringing who struggles to find meaning and worth in his life. This leads him to choose a path of selfishness and drug abuse. As his life spirals downward, so does his relationships with his family and his wife. He soon comes to realize that the only place he can find what he’s truly looking for is in the Lord.

Each of the four screenings includes a live introduction to the film by Perna and Grace Centers of Hope CEO Pastor Kent W. Clark. Additionally, each night will vary by featuring a musical performance, a question-and-answer panel or a live testimony from a GCH resident whose life has been positively changed. Tickets are $15 with all proceeds benefiting GCH, a faith-based organization confronting issues of homelessness, addiction, poverty, abuse, and spiritual emptiness daily.

Event organizers will follow strict COVID-19 safety guidelines to protect the health and well-being of guests, staff, and volunteers. This includes providing temperature checks for people entering the church, requiring face masks to be worn at all times, encouraging social distancing whenever possible, and placing hand sanitization stations in common areas throughout the building.

Filmed in Oakland and Macomb counties, it features Daniel Jeffries, Shawntay Dalon, Nancy Lynette Parker, and Martha Reeves, the legendary American singer and former Detroit politician. The film was featured in this year’s International Christian Film Festival in Orlando, Fla., where it was nominated for Best Director and Most Inspirational Film. It also was featured in the Christian Worldview Film Festival where it was nominated for Best Film and the Sanctity of Life Award.

To view the trailer, visit here. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit here.

Forgotten Harvest to Host First Virtual Women’s Harvest Happy Hour
Forgotten Harvest will host its first virtual Women’s Harvest Happy Hour, on Oct. 22 at 6 p.m., to raise funds for the Forgotten Harvest Farm, presented by The Kroger Co.

The event will be hosted by WXYZ-TV7 news anchor and reporter Glenda Lewis and also will feature a cooking segment from the owner and executive chef of Two Unique Caterers and event planner Kelli Lewton.

“The Kroger Co. of Michigan is happy to continue supporting the tremendous efforts of Forgotten Harvest as we have done for the past 20 years,” says Rachel Hurst, manager of corporate social affairs for Kroger. “With our Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Social Impact Plan, we need partners like Forgotten Harvest to reach the families that are in need.”

The event will be streamed free here.

An exclusive live Zoom panel discussion with local female food industry leaders, hosted by Lewis, will take place Oct. 20 from noon-1 p.m. Tickets for the panel can be purchased for $100 here.

Evening of Unity Set for Oct. 18
The Yeshiva Beth Yehudah in Southfield will host its annual dinner virtually for the first time on Sunday, Oct. 18 at 7 p.m., with the theme “An Evening of Unity.”

The largest event of its kind in the country, the Yeshiva Dinner historically pays tribute to an educational institution, ensuring a strong, united Jewish Detroit. The dinner, typically attended by thousands of guests and local, national, and international political, civic and philanthropic leaders, has transitioned online due to the pandemic.

The event will feature guest remarks from:

  • Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister of Israel.
  • Yousef Al Otaiba, United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the United States.
  • Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase.
  • S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow.
  • S. Sen. Gary Peters.
  • Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
  • Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan.
  • Dr. Wendell Anthony, president of the Detroit Chapter, NAACP.

The Yeshiva also has announced that this year’s Outstanding Leadership Award, the institution’s highest honor, will be awarded to Steve Steinour, chairman, president, and CEO of Huntington Bancshares Inc.

All tickets to this year’s event have been sponsored, making attendance free of charge, with the hope of bringing together as many people as possible.

For more information, visit here.