Editor’s note: Each issue of the Influential Women enewsletter will feature profiles of the Business Journal’s reigning 50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan. The profile first appeared in the event program.
As a female entrepreneur and an advocate for diversity and women in leadership, Doreen Bolhuis has built and grown Gymco over the past 33 years, while becoming a visionary leader for the community.
With a $1-million budget and 30 employees, Gymco in Grand Rapids has been named Small Business of the Year by the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, honored three times as a Top Women-Owned Business by the Business Journal and listed five times on the 101 Best and Brightest Places to Work list by Michigan Business & Professional Association.
Bolhuis also created the Gymtrix DVD series designed to get kids active and teach sport skills.
As a former elite-level gymnastics coach and member of the Junior Olympic Committee for USA Gymnastics, Bolhuis regularly blogs and shares her expertise in physical literacy in the media.
In the community
On a state level, she works to promote business-friendly legislation through board service with the West Michigan Policy Forum and the Grand Rapids chamber.
She's also a member of the Michigan Fitness Foundation and sits on the Governor’s Council for Physical Fitness, Health and Sports.
A tireless small business coach, a mentor to female professionals and an adjunct fitness professor at Aquinas College, Bolhuis has garnered honors from Inforum of West Michigan and Women’s Resource Center.
Bolhuis speaks on the subject of small business development and actively mentors women, business leaders and other entrepreneurs, and she currently sits on the advisory council for Grand Rapids Public Schools’ Academy of Business, Leadership & Entrepreneurship.