Women Who Move West Michigan – 2022 – Special Section
Executive Vice President
Convivial Brands – The High Five GR
19 La Grave Ave. SE | Grand Rapids, MI 49503 | 616-828-1411 | thehighfivegr.com
When it comes to special event venues in downtown Grand Rapids, few stand out as much as The High Five GR, despite its nondescript façade on La Grave near Fulton. Originally a roller rink, the space maintains its yesteryear charm with the same hardwood floors and exposed brick of its early days. Punctuated by large windows with sweeping city views and high, wood-beamed ceilings, the space is wide open and welcoming—and the perfect setting for weddings, receptions, private parties, corporate events, live music shows, and more.
Convivial Brands, which owns The High Five GR as well as Design Design, Style Life, Tableau, and Verdant Graphics, exists to make life better for people in the community, and each brand achieves that goal differently. Founded by Don Kallil, Convivial Brands is a family owned and operated business that proudly includes women ownership and women executive leadership.
Liz Mokhiber is the Executive Vice President for all of the brands, overseeing the day-to-day global operations and working closely with each executive. Jennifer Kallil is the Vice President of Events, and Heather Young is the Venue and Sales Manager for The High Five GR.
Before Convivial Brands was conceived as the umbrella, The High Five GR had already been established and hosting events since 2018. The venue’s very first wedding was Liz Mokhiber’s, making its inception even more meaningful to the family.
“I was the first bride, and we built out the space not just for my wedding but because we realized the space was so amazing that we wanted to make it available for anyone who wants to use it,” says Mokhiber. “Just knowing that so many people and brides and event goers have been able to see the space and use it and enjoy it, feels really good. We’re so thrilled to be able to offer it as a way to connect the community.”
Now, Liz works closely with the entire High Five team, helping them overcome various barriers, and supporting the strategic growth plans for the High Five. While they’re already booking into 2024 for weddings—a testament to the appeal of the space— The High Five GR has situated itself as an ideal site for corporate events as well. With capacity for up to 300 people, plus state-of-the-art audio and visual systems, the space is unrestricted and accommodating for a number of creative uses.
The High Five GR is currently focusing on building enticing packages for event planners and working as a team on strategies to serve corporate business and help them make a lasting impression. “We have a team that’s on fire to ensure that any occasion is supported, whether it’s a company party, staff meeting, awards ceremony, or leadership address,” says Mokhiber. “Any event a company could possibly think to have with us, we want to offer it to them.”
What also sets The High Five GR apart, and Convivial Brands as a whole, is their passion for improving lives and their commitment to creating opportunities for women in the community. “We really believe in empowerment and professional development,” says Mokhiber. “If our staff—who are mostly women—want to grow in their careers, they can do that with us,” says Mokhiber. “We’ll find ways to make it happen as much, and as fairly and equitably, as we possibly can.”