DBusiness Daily Update: Charitable Gift America Inks NIL Deals with MSU Soccer and Golf Teams, and More

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
Charitable Gift America has inked NIL deals for the MSU’s women’s soccer, and its men’s (pictured) and women’s golf teams. // Courtesy of MSU
Charitable Gift America has inked NIL deals for the MSU’s women’s soccer, and its men’s (pictured) and women’s golf teams. // Courtesy of MSU

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

Charitable Gift America Inks NIL Deals with MSU Soccer and Golf Teams

Charitable Gift America has inked name, image, and likeness (NIL) deals for the Michigan State University women’s soccer team, and the MSU men’s and women’s golf teams.

The contracts — awarded through This Is Sparta!, a collective organized by Charitable Gift America — will provide every student athlete on the teams with $2,500 for the spring semester beginning in January, and an additional $5,000 for the 2023-2024 academic year starting next fall.

As part of the contract, each student athlete will give 5 percent back to a charity of their choice. This follows Charitable Gift America’s NIL deal with MSU’s women’s gymnastics team announced in August, which marked the first time in NCAA history that an entire women’s gymnastics team received NIL contracts of this kind.

“We’re thrilled that we can continue to expand our efforts and provide more Spartan athletes with financial support along with the opportunity to give back to worthwhile causes,” says Thomas Dieters, board president of Charitable Gift America. “Our project with the women’s gymnastics team was so successful and meaningful that we knew we couldn’t stop there. I’m grateful for Spartans across the country who have stepped up to the plate and helped empower our student-athletes to make a difference.”

Dieters notes that while there have been many donors to the This Is Sparta! fund, the new contracts could not have happened without the partnership of Bob Skandalaris, an entrepreneur, author, and MSU alum known for his support of MSU athletics, including donating the lead gift for the Skandalaris Football Center at the Duffy Daughtery Football Building on MSU’s campus.

Charitable Gift America has funded more than 70 Spartan athletes to date, including individual football and baseball players. Charities already benefitting from Charitable Gift America’s unique approach to NIL contracts include St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Plan International, Place of Hope, and the Global Sanctuary for Elephants.

For more information, visit cgaamerica.org.

Detroit Native Jessica McGlory Raises $9.25M to Redesign End-of-life Care

Guaranteed, a New York-based company providing modern, end-of-life care designed with the patient and caregiver in mind, announced that it has closed a $6.5 million seed round led by BrandProject, with participation from Precursor Ventures, Springbank Ventures, Lakehouse Ventures, and Cake Ventures.

Detroit native Jessica McGlory is the founder and CEO of Guaranteed.

Notably, 50 percent of the capital came from a woman- and/or person of color-led general partner investment firm or angel investor. Additionally, 27 percent came specifically from Black investment dollars. Guaranteed will use the funding to scale its platform with a focus on building out its patient experience — and hiring hospice and clinical care professionals, as well as engineering and marketing talent as it expands into new markets.

“Despite being a $29 billion market that is set to double in six years, our culture is far from having a constructive relationship with death,” McGlory “Since everyone dies, we are committed to making the end-of-life experience more personalized because we believe everyone should have access to the care they need in order to have a good death.”

For more information, visit onguaranteed.com.

Glam-Aholic Lifestyle Pop-up Opens in Detroit this Holiday Season!

Lifestyle brand Glam-Aholic Lifestyle will be bringing luxury retail to 1020 Woodard Ave. from Nov. 5-Jan. 21, 2023.

“I’m always excited to share the Glam-Aholic Shopping Experience with my city every chance that I get,” says Mia Ray, creator and founder of Glam-Aholic Lifestyle. “This pop up means so much to me because I know that my Glam-Aholics love to show up, show out, and shop. It inspires me to continue to create, as well as inspire my city to pursue its dream while watching mine unfold for over the past decade.”

Ray launched the Glam-Aholic Lifestyle brand in 2010 as a fashion blog, before evolving into a travel and lifestyle brand.

For more information, visit glamaholiclifestyle.com.

General RV in Wixom Offers New Wheelchair-accessible RV

General RV in Wixom is now offering a new accessible RV to accommodate campers with disabilities — the Keystone Outback 342CG.

Approximately 25.5 million Americans have a disability that limits their travel. Many recreation areas are adapting to welcome campers with disabilities and updated ADA compliant trails and pathways, and the RV industry is following suit.

“What Keystone has done with the 342CG model is create an accessible trailer that can help those whose mobility challenges limit their access to the outdoor recreation and camping lifestyle,” says Geoff Radke, director of sales at General RV. “It can open whole new experiences to those that may not have been able to enjoy them previously. Access and inclusion continue to be focus points for the RV industry and General RV Center.”

The wheelchair Keystone Outback 342CG was built with accessibility in mind. Working with adventurers and disability advocates, the new model includes a ramp door which sits at the natural point of ingress and egress for wheelchairs. The floorplan includes widened doorframes and sliding doors, which makes it easier for wheelchair users to maneuver the living space.

The Keystone Outback 342CG currently is available at four of General RV’s Michigan Supercenters: Birch Run, Brownstown, Grand Rapids, and Wixom. It also is available at the Huntley, Ill., North Canton, Ohio, and Orange Park, Fla. locations.

Bayview Yacht Club Retains Rouge Partnership Strategies for Bayview Mackinac Race

The Bayview Yacht Club (BYC) announced Wednesday that Rouge Partnership Strategies has been retained to develop new sponsorship opportunities and manage partnerships through the 100th Bayview Mackinac Race, which is scheduled to take place in July 2024.

As part of the agreement, Rouge will develop and oversee traditional, digital, and experiential marketing activations at the start of the race in Port Huron, at the finish on Mackinac Island, and during other BYC events.

“As the world’s longest consecutively run long-distance freshwater yacht race, the Bayview Mackinac Race holds a unique position not only in the world of sailing but all of sports,” says Lynn Kotwicki, 2022 commodore of the Bayview Yacht Club. “As we look to the 100th running of the race in 2024, it is our pleasure to affiliate with Rouge Partnership Strategies, a company that has successfully worked with leading sports teams and events in Michigan and throughout the country.”

In addition to the Bayview Mackinac Race, Rouge will manage sponsorships and activations for BYC’s Detroit Cup, One Design Regatta, Women on Water Regatta, as well as other regattas the club oversees.

“Over the past 20 years, we have been fortunate to be involved with many high-profile sports teams and events around Michigan and the United States,” says Zach Wagner, co-founder of Rouge Partnership Strategies. “The Bayview Mackinac Race is one of Michigan’s crown jewel events and as it approaches the 100th consecutive running there is a tremendous opportunity for companies to elevate their brands by partnering with the event.”

The 99th and 100th Bayview Mackinac Races start July 15, 2023, and July 20, 2024, respectively.

City of Detroit Issues 34 Inaugural Neighborhood Beautification Grants

The city of Detroit has issued the first 34 Neighborhood Beautification Program (NBP) grants ranging from $500 to $15,000 for a total of almost $500,000.

Groups all over Detroit, representing all seven City Council districts, are among the recipients. They will use the funds for neighborhood clean-ups, community gardens, and public space activities.

The NBP grants provide funding for Detroit-based neighborhood associations, block clubs, faith-based organizations, and nonprofits that currently own the property where they want to carry out a project in the community.

“Detroiters are proud of their communities and want to roll up their sleeves and beautify the streets they call home, they just need financial help to do so,” says Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “When I campaigned, I said that every neighborhood has a future and, this fund will go a long way to making our neighborhoods stronger and more beautiful places to live and raise a family.”

Applications for next round will open in early 2023. For more information, visit here.

Oakland County Invests $20M into Healthy Communities Parks and Outdoor Recreation

Oakland County announced Wednesday that it plans to transform local parks by investing more than $20 million in the Healthy Communities Park and Outdoor Recreation Investment Plan.

The Oakland County Board of Commissioners approved utilizing $15 million of the county’s $244 million share of American Rescue Plan Act dollars while the Oakland County Parks and Recreation Commission is providing $5.2 million in matching funds.

“As a former Oakland County Commissioner and mayor of Ferndale, I have been passionate over the years about the need to beef up our parks system in the south end of the county,” says County Executive Dave Coulter. “These projects will add or improve 10 parks in the county’s south end, providing more equitable access to parks in our more densely populated areas, many of which are within walking distance of public transportation.”

The goals of the plan include revitalizing and enhancing parks located in or servicing residents of communities most impacted by the pandemic; improving physical and mental health, social connectivity, and quality of life of residents; and addressing barriers to equitable access and use of quality park and recreation opportunities for residents of all ages and abilities.

Oakland County Parks and Recreation will make major improvements at select local parks and transition management responsibilities to Oakland County Parks and Recreation. Portions of Beech Woods Park in Southfield and Shepherd Park in Oak Park, Hawthorne Park in Pontiac, and Ambassador Park in Madison Heights will become the newest additions to the county parks system. Oakland County Parks also will partner with the Hazel Park Community Center to develop joint recreation programming facilities.

Grant funding also will provide several local governments with support for local park and recreation facility improvements. Among the beneficiaries of these investments are Green Acres Park in Hazel Park, Pontiac municipal parks, Mack-Rowe Park in Royal Oak Township, Shepherd Park in Oak Park, and Beech Woods Park in Southfield.

ACG Detroit to Host Annual Kimble Bells Networking and Charity Event Dec. 7

ACG Detroit is gearing up for its 17th Annual Kimble Bells Networking and Charity Event from 6-8:30 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Birmingham Country Club (1750 Saxon Drive).

The evening will include food, cocktails, and networking while raising funds to benefit Elizabeth’s Courage Fund, a local charity supporting palliative care to improve the quality of life for seriously ill children and families at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital.

To register for this event, visit here.

Consumers Energy Foundation Announces $500K in Grants

The Consumers Energy Foundation in Jackson announced $500,000 in grant funding to help two statewide organizations — the Food Bank Council of Michigan (FBCM) and the Michigan Association of United Ways (MAUW) — to provide direct assistance and necessities to Michiganders.

The grant funding is part of the Consumers Energy Foundation’s commitment to investing in Michigan’s people and addressing critical and emergent needs in a meaningful way.

“As costs continue to rise in nearly every facet of our lives, we know many in our state are facing significant challenges to accessing basics like food and safe housing,” says Brandon Hofmeister, president of the Consumers Energy Foundation.

“The Consumers Energy Foundation is committed to eliminating whatever barriers possible to those basics, and these grants will allow two organizations that are out in our communities every day to continue and expand the work they’re doing to connect people and families with the resources they need to thrive.

The two $250,000 grants will allow both organizations to distribute the funding throughout the state where the need is greatest, with a focus on addressing immediate needs for residents within the Asset-Limited, Income-Constrained, Employed (ALICE) population.

Salvation Army Seeking Volunteer Bell Ringers for Holiday Campaign

The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit is seeking volunteer bell ringers for the 2022 Red Kettle Christmas Campaign. The nonprofit requests the community’s support to help meet its $8.2 million fundraising goal.

The Salvation Army aims to fill more than 74,000 hours of bell ringing shifts across hundreds of kettle locations throughout Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb counties.

“During the holiday season, our bell ringers bring hope to those in need while spreading holiday cheer across metro Detroit,” says Maj. Bob Mueller, metro Detroit area commander for

The Salvation Army Great Lakes Division. “Our goal is to serve those in need in our community. Volunteer bell ringers are the difference between an empty kettle and one that raises the funds that sustain the help The Salvation Army provides all year long.”

Those interested in volunteering can visit registertoring.com to sign up for volunteer shifts. There, volunteers have an option to choose a traditional, two-hour session at a physical red kettle site or participate in a virtual bell ringing shift where they can raise funds in the comfort of their own home.

Bell ringing begins on Friday, Nov. 11 and runs through Saturday, Dec. 24, excluding Thanksgiving and Sundays.

In addition, supporters can make a tax-deductible contribution to The Salvation Army Red Kettle Christmas Campaign by:

  • Texting GIFT to 24365
  • Visiting SAmetrodetroit.org
  • Calling 877-SAL-MICH
  • Sending a check, made payable to The Salvation Army, to: 16130 Northland Dr., Southfield, MI 48075

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