LINC UP selects next executive director

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LaKiya Thompson Jenkins. Courtesy LINC UP

LINC UP’s board of directors completed its search for a new executive director. 

As of Sept. 7, the equity-focused affordable housing nonprofit’s new executive director will be LaKiya Thompson Jenkins, who currently serves as the organization’s director of operations. She succeeds Jeremy DeRoo, who recently became CEO of Dwelling Place.

Jenkins has served in a variety of roles of increasing responsibility within the organization throughout her 11-year tenure.

“The board’s highest priority was looking internally for highly qualified candidates, and places its trust in LaKiya and the staff of LINC UP to continue its work to expand affordable housing and empower the community,” said Heather Rosema, LINC UP board chair. “LaKiya will work with the board and staff to continue implementing the 2021-23 strategic plan and expand opportunities in neighborhoods on the southeast and southwest sides of Grand Rapids. She has our full support and trust, and we couldn’t be more excited for her to step into this leadership role.”

Jenkins called it an “honor and a privilege” to be chosen for the role.

“Our work is to create opportunities for the community to grow and advance,” she said. “We must continue being strategic to create more affordable housing and advocate for a more equitable Grand Rapids. I am honored to step into this new role and will work with the LINC UP staff and board to continue our equity work right here at home.”

LINC UP

Founded in 2000, LINC UP’s mission is to advance racial equity in Grand Rapids by expanding opportunities in affordable housing and increasing community power. 

The nonprofit works to create more equitable housing and change policies that limit advancement opportunities in historically under resourced communities and neighborhoods. 

LINC UP is a community development organization with nearly $40 million in assets across Kent County.

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