Providing leadership and resources needed to connect complex community challenges with high impact solutions in Macomb County.
Each member of Advancing Macomb’s board of directors has a professional or personal connection to Macomb County and a professional or personal leadership role in the broader Detroit Region.
The community benefits provided by Advancing Macomb are made possible because of our dedicated partners. These organizations are champions within the community.
Connect to valuable resources for nonprofits, volunteers, fundraising, and community collaboration.
Don’t miss any of our upcoming news and events! Here you can find all our past and present events and any news that we have going on!
Our highly invested board of directors and our experienced staff leverage their collective leadership and regional relationships to foster collaboration and to connect resources to communities, programs, and projects in need.
Executive DirectorRead Bio
Diane Banks joined Advancing Macomb as Executive Director in March 2019, taking over the role from founding Executive Director, Melissa Roy. She has over 14 years of experience as a public and non-profit administrator. Prior to joining Advancing Macomb, she served as Program Director at Leadership Macomb where she directed educational and fundraising events, worked to develop strategic direction for the organization, and built relationships with a wide network of key county and regional leaders. Previously, Diane worked as an environmental health specialist and program administrator with the Macomb County Health Department, developing and managing the organization’s surface water quality education program.
Diane is passionate about her community and has continuously worked to promote and strengthen Macomb County in both her personal and professional life. She has served on the City of New Baltimore Downtown Development Authority Board and is a member of several professional organizations including, Inforum Michigan and the Association of Leadership Programs. She holds master’s and bachelor’s degrees, both cum laude, from Central Michigan University.
Program ManagerRead Bio
Angela Lenda serves as the Program Manager for Advancing Macomb. She is actively engaged in development, programming, and community engagement for the organization’s initiatives. She also promotes the efforts of Advancing Macomb as well as Macomb County’s assets to a wide audience through social media, the newsletter, and community events.
Her career has taken her through both the non-profit and corporate sectors, and she brings significant experience in non-profit administration, program/project management, volunteer management, communications, and community relations. Prior to formally joining the Advancing Macomb staff in 2018, she volunteered for the organization since its early days in 2015.
Angela is a Macomb County native and enjoys taking advantage of the many community and cultural events that the county has to offer. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan, a master’s degree from Central Michigan University and was a Community Engagement Fellow with the Michigan Community Service Commission.
Each member of Advancing Macomb’s board of directors has a professional or personal connection to Macomb County, and a professional or personal leadership role in the broader Detroit Region. Their mission is to provide thoughtful civic leadership to Macomb County, empower community development and provide a deeper connection to the region at large.
Macomb Community College
Macomb Community College
Jim Sawyer became the sixth president of Macomb Community College on July 1, 2017. During his fifteen years at Macomb, he has served as the Dean of Engineering and Advanced Technology, Vice Provost for Career Programs, and Provost and Senior Vice President for the Learning Unit. Prior to joining Macomb Community College, Jim held leadership positions in engineering, quality, and operations at companies such as Chrysler, Dana, Ancor and New Haven Foundry. Jim is an American Society for Quality Certified Quality Engineer and he holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Lawrence Technological University, a Master of Science in Administration and Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from Central Michigan University. Jim currently serves on the boards of Leadership Macomb, St. John Providence Hospital, Macomb/St. Clair Workforce Development, Advancing Macomb, Michigan Design Council and the American Society of Body Engineers Foundation.
Vice ChairRead Bio
John Blanchard is director of local government relations for General Motors. He was recently appointed as lead executive for GM to oversee all projects and initiatives within the City of Detroit and communities throughout Southeast Michigan. This is in addition to his role as a liaison between GM and city and county governments in key GM markets across the United States with a focus on coordinating local public policy and government relations activities that will impact the company. Blanchard currently serves on the boards of several other local organizations including Automation Alley, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, Detroit Riverfront Conservancy and the GM Foundation. Prior to his current assignment, Blanchard led the GM Worldwide Real Estate Group and was responsible for the acquisition, disposition and redevelopment of all corporate real estate around the world, including overseeing the redevelopment of the GM Global Headquarters at the Renaissance Center. Blanchard is a lifelong resident of Macomb County.
Trion Solutions, Inc.
Trion Solutions, Inc.
Maria has spent most of her career providing businesses with assistance in human resource administration and insurance. She is constantly interfacing and spending time with amazing business leaders, providing them valuable assistance with their non-revenue generating activities. Her expertise in this area allows business owners and corporate leaders to spend more time growing and improving their businesses. She loves the challenge presented by each business and works hard to help them improve and progress through the vast and diverse services of Trion. In addition to her career, Maria is very involved in her community and serves in the following capacity:
Executive Board – Advancing Macomb
Executive Board – The Macomb Chamber
Chairperson – Macomb Community College Foundation
Advisory Board – Families Against Narcotics
When Maria is not at work, she is a jewelry designer and owns her own business and is the primary jewelry designer for My Sister’s Jewelry and Maria Silamianos Jewelry Designs. She is also a voracious reader, and loves to bike, kayak, downhill ski, swim and garden. Maria is married to Craig Sherman and is the proud mom of Dylan Sherman, freshman at HOPE College in Holland, Michigan and Michael Sherman, junior at University Liggett School.
Paul Trulik is president and CEO of Apparatus Solutions Inc. He has more than twenty years of experience in finance, accounting and human resource management. In 2009, Trulik created Apparatus, which is an organization focused on bringing exceptional financial and administrative services to the nonprofit and social enterprise community of Michigan. Trulik holds many key financial and administrative positions within the non-profit community of Southeast Michigan, including chief financial officer of Business Leaders for Michigan and the Downtown Detroit Partnership as well as treasurer for Invest Detroit Foundation and Advancing Macomb. Trulik has a Bachelor of Accountancy degree from Walsh College. A Macomb County resident, he lives in Shelby Township with his wife and three children.
McLaren MacombRead Bio
Proper Group InternationalRead Bio
Proper Group International
Mick Brody is the Chief Financial Officer of Proper Group International, headquartered in the city of Warren. Mick is responsible for all financial aspects of the company, covering operations in three states and in Canada. Mick has extensive experience covering all aspects of finance and accounting throughout his thirty years of experience. Mick is a highly motivated financial professional with deep experience in all aspects of finance and overall management.
Mick was born and raised in Macomb County and remains a committed resident, where he and his wife are raising their two daughters. Mick is a proud member and volunteer at St. Paul of Tarsus Parish in Clinton Township.
Warner Norcross + JuddRead Bio
Warner Norcross + Judd
Matt Casey is a partner at Warner Norcross + Judd, one of the largest law firms in Michigan with eight Michigan offices and more than 200 attorneys. While his practice is business based, he has a specialized focus in representing financing institutions in the documentation of commercial loans as well as the workout of troubled loans. Active in the community, he is a board member of the Macomb County Chamber of Commerce, the St. John Providence Foundation Board and the Macomb Community College Foundation Board. He is a magna cum laude graduate of the Wayne State University School of Business Administration and has a juris doctorate degree from Wayne State University Law School. Casey is a lifelong Macomb County resident and has practiced law in the county for nearly twenty-five years.
USI Insurance ServicesRead Bio
USI Insurance Services
Mark Cullen is a Senior Vice President at USI Insurance Services. He and his wife Julie have recently made Macomb their home. In addition to his background in commercial construction, development and real estate, Mark brings his talents in marketing and sales as well as his regional connections to the Advancing Macomb board.
Pete Dwyer is the President of HR-1. He has 35 years of experience in recruiting, executive recruiting, executive coaching, team building and problem resolution. He graduated from Western Michigan University in June 1983 with a Bachelors in Business Administration and went to work for Central Transport in August 1983. Pete started in operations and moved into Human Resources in 1986. He began as a field recruiter for operations and sales and was involved in building the regional management footprint for the company. In ’91 he was promoted to Director of Recruiting, Associate Director of Human Resources in ’97, Director in 2000 and VP of Human Resources in 2002. Pete worked directly with the owners of the company and recommended they form HR-1 in order to service the entire enterprise properly. In 2011 he became the President of HR-1 which services the following industries: Transportation / Logistics, Insurance, Concrete, Tire re- manufacturing, retail and real estate. Pete has worked and lived in Macomb County for 38 years.
Fifth Third BankRead Bio
Fifth Third Bank
David Girodat is president and chief executive officer of Fifth Third Bank for Eastern Michigan. His first job in the industry was in 1988 when he worked as a junior loan officer for First National Bank. Since then, the bank transitioned to Old Kent Bank and then Fifth Third. Over the years, Girodat held positions of increasing responsibility including regional loan officer, middle market banker, chief of real estate and senior commercial banker. He became president in 2007. He also serves on the boards of Walsh College Foundation, Detroit Regional Chamber, New Detroit and Henry Ford Macomb Hospital. Girodat grew up in Warren and attended classes at Macomb Community College. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in finance from Walsh College. David served as Advancing Macomb’s board chair from the organization’s inception through 2020.
Gayle Joseph GroupRead Bio
Gayle Joseph Group
Gayle Joseph is CEO of Gayle Joseph Group, a public relations firm that partners with business leaders to help them build and protect their brands using strategic communications and multimedia storytelling. Before opening her company, Joseph was vice president of corporate communications for JACK Entertainment, a $1.4 billion, Detroit-based gaming and entertainment company owned by Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman, Dan Gilbert. While there, she was instrumental in the successful launch of the JACK brand, as well as all communications for the operational transition of the company’s properties. She also led the announcement and grand openings of Wahlburgers restaurants in Detroit and Cleveland. Throughout her career, Gayle has held leadership positions working with many notable brands, including Ford Credit, General Motors, Guardian Industries, Kelly Services, Microsoft, Sprint, Shell Oil, Taubman and The Home Depot. A lifelong Macomb County resident, Joseph serves on the board of Advancing Macomb and Public Relations Society of America Detroit Chapter, and is a member of Detroit Economic Club, Inforum, Macomb County Chamber, Detroit Regional Chamber and Lebanese American Chamber. Joseph earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism and public relations from Northern Illinois University.
Lipari FoodRead Bio
Macomb County Chamber of CommerceRead Bio
Macomb County Chamber of Commerce
Kelley Lovati received her BSA and MSA degrees from Central Michigan University and a PhD in Management with a specialization in Leadership and Organizational change from Walden University. Kelley is an accomplished professional with a strong operations background who is well-connected throughout Macomb County. She has a wide spectrum of experience both in the public health and the corporate sector with experience in management, marketing, community outreach, event development and public speaking. Kelley has an active membership in the American Management Association; participated in the Leadership Macomb Class XVII (2014) and Multicultural Leadership Training (2014). Dr. Lovati is actively engaged with community groups to stimulate social change in equity for all individuals and is on the Board of Directors for Macomb Act (Active Cultural Togetherness). Kelley was born and raised in Macomb County and truly supports Making Macomb Your Home or workplace of choice. She is looking forward to leading the Macomb County Chamber of Commerce into its next chapter.
The Chaldean Chamber of CommerceRead Bio
The Chaldean Chamber of Commerce
Martin Manna is the President of The Chaldean American Chamber of Commerce and the Chaldean Community Foundation. The Chaldean Chamber of Commerce seeks to represent the estimated 15,000 Chaldean owned businesses in Michigan. The Chaldean Community Foundation provides social services to more than 18,000 annually. Martin is also one of the founders and publishers of The Chaldean News, a monthly magazine distributed to over 10,000 Chaldean households. Martin is involved in several civic and community affairs. Currently he is a Director for New Detroit and Advancing Macomb, one of the organizers and Board member of The Bank of Michigan, a Director for the Nineveh Council of America and an Advisor with In Defense of Christians.
Ascension Macomb Oakland HospitalRead Bio
Ascension Macomb Oakland Hospital
Bill Mott has served as Chief Operating Officer at Ascension Macomb Oakland Hospital since 2015.
He is a graduate of Leadership Macomb and serves on both the Macomb County Chamber of Commerce Board and the Board of Directors for Lighthouse of Oakland County.
O'Reilly Rancilio P.C.Read Bio
O'Reilly Rancilio P.C.
John Nitz is a founding member of O’Reilly Rancilio P.C. and has served as a director and officer of the Law Firm. During his 40 years as a practicing attorney, Nitz has broad experience in many areas of the law. Nitz coordinated the work of several law firms in the drafting of the Charter for the County of Macomb, which was approved by the electorate in November 2009. The firm was general counsel for the Macomb County Charter Commission, and currently is special counsel to the Macomb County Executive, Mark A. Hackel. Active in the community, Nitz has served as a director and officer of many organizations including as a trustee, secretary and president of Warren Consolidated Schools, as a director of the Warren, Center Line, Sterling Heights Chamber of Commerce, president of the Warren Rotary Club, founder and past president of Leadership Macomb, trustee of the Warren Consolidated Schools Foundation, trustee for the Utica School Foundation for Educational Excellence, and director and president of Friends of the Octagon House.
DTE EnergyRead Bio
Brown & BrownRead Bio
Brown & Brown
Brian is the Sales Leader for Brown & Brown in Sterling Heights. Together with the Michigan President, Brian supports the Michigan workforce development, regional growth and strategic planning. His specialty is one-on-one interactions with clients to help solve business risk needs. Brian’s accomplishments have kept Brown & Brown as the largest insurer in Macomb through strong client development and year-over-year sales records. Brian is a proud graduate of Central Michigan University, where he completed his undergraduate degree and Walsh College, where he completed his Masters of Business Administration. Brian is actively involved in community organizations: Forgotten Harvest, Cornerstone Schools, the American Polish Cultural Society and Walsh College.
Henry Ford MacombRead Bio
Henry Ford Macomb
Barbara Rossmann joined the organization in 1999 as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, and was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer in January 2004. Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals is among Macomb County’s leading employers and health providers, with nearly 3,000 employees, 900 medical staff members, an acute care hospital with tertiary level services, an inpatient behavioral health facility and an extensive regional ambulatory network including six health centers. With annual net operating revenue of approximately $400 million, Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals is the second largest operating unit of Henry Ford Health System, recognized as a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient.
Barbara received Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Science degrees. In addition to executive leadership roles within the Daughters of Charity Health System and Trinity Health, both leading health systems in the United States, Barbara served as a Captain in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps.
Barbara’s commitment to the southeast Michigan region extends beyond her work through Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals. She serves as a board member for the Sterling Heights Regional Chamber, Greater Detroit Area Health Council, Michigan chapter of the American College of Healthcare Executives, Macomb Health Plan; Families Against Narcotics Advisory Board, Leadership Macomb, Advancing Macomb, Medstar, Macomb Community College Foundation, 5/3 Bank Eastern Division Board of Directors, Southeast Michigan Red Cross board, and a member of the Michigan Hospital Association’s Legislative Policy Panel.
Waste ManagementRead Bio
Hitachi Business FinanceRead Bio
Hitachi Business Finance
Mike Semanco is president and chief operating officer of Hitachi Business Finance. He has over 20 years of experience in the financial services and banking industry. He received a Bachelor of Business Administration in finance from Walsh College in 1991 and a Master of Science degree in finance in 1999. In 2006, Semanco was named the Walsh College Distinguished Alumnus and is a member of the Board of Trustees. He is active within the local business community as a member of the Detroit Economic Club, Troy Chamber of Commerce, Rochester Chamber of Commerce and Mayor’s Business Council of Rochester Hills. Semanco was named to Crain’s Detroit Business 40 Under 40 Class of 2007 and was named 2008 Michigan Financial Services Champion from the Small Business Administration. Semanco is a lifelong Macomb County resident.
First State BankRead Bio
First State Bank
As the Chief Risk Officer and Senior VP of First State Bank, Kelly is responsible for assessing and mitigating risks, overseeing collections, managing litigation and all aspects of banking and finance law. She oversees regulatory, compliance, examination, privacy and other statutory requirements. She grew up and was raised in Oakland County where she remains active in the community, including with her alma mater Marian High School, and at St. Hugo Parish. She graduated third in her law school class at the University of Detroit Mercy, all while supporting her husband’s business and raising her children. Her proudest accomplishments are her eight children, all of whom live locally.
Her legal profession started in labor and employment at Dykema Gossett, but she changed courses during the recession and accepted a job at First State Bank in 2009. Her most rewarding accomplishment in her legal profession was being a part of the team at First State Bank that worked with struggling borrowers and successfully found a way to allow most of them to stay in their homes – retaining their dignity and integrity.
Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce and IndustryRead Bio
Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Stacy Ziarko serves as the President and CEO of the Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry. She brings a wealth of knowledge in the areas of fundraising, strategic planning, and non-profit management in addition to her relationships with a wide range of business, non-profit and community leaders. She is also a life-long resident of Macomb County.
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Advancing Macomb Foundation is a 501(c)(3) and all donations are tax deductible. EIN 46-2344176
Photos Provided by Anne Nicolazzo
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